Author Topic: Multiple rental cars  (Read 6967 times)

acroy

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Multiple rental cars
« on: November 04, 2013, 11:24:43 AM »
I have a client who routinely sends 4-6 people to my facility.
They come from the same office & are going to the same destination.
They routinely all take separate rental cars - spending the company's money, clogging the highways, burning the gas - for one person in each mid-sized (the company standard) or Premium (if the have the miles/status) rental car.
Not my money, not their money, but what a waste!

more4less

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2013, 11:50:12 AM »
You could offer them a van :) On the other hand, it would some what hurt your company's business.

Jamesqf

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2013, 12:44:55 PM »
They come from the same office & are going to the same destination.
They routinely all take separate rental cars...

What are they doing during the hours they aren't at your company location, though?  That is, if they are staying overnight, would you suggest they all share a single hotel room?

Albert

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2013, 01:40:57 PM »
Staying in the same hotel would be convenient, wouldn't it? At least that's what I always do when on business trip with someone else from the company.

Maybe they just don't like each other...

Jamesqf

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #4 on: November 04, 2013, 08:17:20 PM »
Staying in the same hotel would be convenient,

Not just the same hotel, but all sleeping in the same hotel room.  It'd save money :-)

The point I was trying to make is that maybe the company expects people to have a life outside working hours, and thus provides them with cars.

acroy

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #5 on: November 05, 2013, 07:30:10 AM »
To clarify, I run an r&d test plant, our clients will send people to my Plant for tests which lasts usually 1, sometimes as long as 5 days.

So on occasion, a client company will send say 5 co-workers from the same office in say Chicago, all on the same plane, to the same hotel, but they will all take separate cars from the airport to the hotel, and from the hotel to my facility.

The fun part is - most of the hotels have free shuttles to/from the airport and to/from my facility, so NO rental car is needed at all.

Just an example of amazing waste

as far as sharing a hotel room - I'd know I'd not do that with co-workers. That's getting too close :)

dragoncar

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #6 on: November 05, 2013, 10:08:11 AM »
To clarify, I run an r&d test plant, our clients will send people to my Plant for tests which lasts usually 1, sometimes as long as 5 days.

So on occasion, a client company will send say 5 co-workers from the same office in say Chicago, all on the same plane, to the same hotel, but they will all take separate cars from the airport to the hotel, and from the hotel to my facility.

The fun part is - most of the hotels have free shuttles to/from the airport and to/from my facility, so NO rental car is needed at all.

Just an example of amazing waste

as far as sharing a hotel room - I'd know I'd not do that with co-workers. That's getting too close :)

But again, do they go straight from your facility to bed, and come right back in the morning?  If not, perhaps the company expects them to have personal thing to do in their off time.

Unless I was on some crazy 24/7 site visit, I would expect a car (if in a suburban area vs a big walkable or transit heavy city)

odput

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #7 on: November 05, 2013, 10:31:25 AM »
Two cars for 5 people is plenty for everyone to do their own thing during their time off.

Also, even if each person was provided their own car, why on earth don't they get into one or two for the commute to and from the plant?

dragoncar

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #8 on: November 05, 2013, 11:33:24 AM »
Two cars for 5 people is plenty for everyone to do their own thing during their time off.

Sorry, it's not up to my employer to dictate who I share a car with when I'm not on the clock.  If I want to visit my aunt Sally, I'm not bringing my annoying coworker Joe who needs to go to the bank.

Rural

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #9 on: November 06, 2013, 03:33:06 AM »
Two cars for 5 people is plenty for everyone to do their own thing during their time off.

Sorry, it's not up to my employer to dictate who I share a car with when I'm not on the clock.  If I want to visit my aunt Sally, I'm not bringing my annoying coworker Joe who needs to go to the bank.
But if the cost is being covered by the employer then I think they should have a say in it. If you want to go visit your Aunt Sally without Joe then rent your own car

I'm with dragoncar here. If my employer wants me to travel to somewhere neither they nor I are located, they have to foot the bill for me to have a semblance of normal life while I'm off.

And I agree it would be appropriate to carpool to the facility from the hotel.

odput

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #10 on: November 06, 2013, 07:22:04 AM »

I'm with dragoncar here. If my employer wants me to travel to somewhere neither they nor I are located, they have to foot the bill for me to have a semblance of normal life while I'm off.


I agree that they should provide for normal activities, but while you are off visiting your Aunt Sally (or doing whatever), is it really unreasonable to think that the other 4 people can agree on a place to go for dinner and drinks in the other vehicle?  How often do 2 of the 5 people travelling have something that they both need independent transportation for?  I stand by that 2 cars is plenty for 5 people to travel with, even if one person has something they want to do completely on their own.

paddedhat

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #11 on: November 06, 2013, 09:12:01 AM »
I was involved with a similar situation for nearly two decades. I supervised volunteers for a large banking industry company that regularly sent a crew of roughly twenty employees to do volunteer work, all over the states. Each project lasted a week, and accommodations were generally hotels, with two to a room. Typically, transportation was 4-5 minivans, available for the duration. At no point was there a lack of transportation for anybody who wanted to head anywhere, off hours, and I can't remember ever having a single issue with my crew.

ritchie70

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #12 on: November 06, 2013, 09:55:14 AM »

I'm with dragoncar here. If my employer wants me to travel to somewhere neither they nor I are located, they have to foot the bill for me to have a semblance of normal life while I'm off.


I agree that they should provide for normal activities, but while you are off visiting your Aunt Sally (or doing whatever), is it really unreasonable to think that the other 4 people can agree on a place to go for dinner and drinks in the other vehicle?  How often do 2 of the 5 people travelling have something that they both need independent transportation for?  I stand by that 2 cars is plenty for 5 people to travel with, even if one person has something they want to do completely on their own.

I've actually been in this scenario multiple times. I'm pretty much 100% introvert, and I don't actually like most of my co-workers very much.  They're perfectly nice people, but I hate small-talk, probably because I suck at it.

If I'm being sent away from home for days on end, I expect/demand my own car so I can explore the area on my own. I'll eat dinner with them one or two nights out of the week, but my off-work time is MY off-work time, and they're not welcome to it. I expect to be able to live my life without negotiating with people I don't really care about - or having to do what everyone else wants to do when someone else wants to go visit Aunt Sally.

If you're nice to the rental car clerk, they might give you something more fun than the vanilla midsize the company negotiated, but fun cars don't tend to hold many people.

I was sent to Orange County, California in 2004 or so, and wound up driving all over in a Mustang convertible, including going to the beach at 6 AM and watching surfers from the Newport Beach pier. (I'm from Illinois, so it felt like 8 AM to me. I was up anyway.) I couldn't have done that if I had to "borrow the car from dad" - which is what it would have felt like.

galliver

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #13 on: November 06, 2013, 11:18:02 AM »
No one has asked how much free time they actually have...friends of mine who have gone on this sort of trip tend to work 12-14 hr days on site and not have too much time to 'explore' or do other personal business while on the trip. In that case, there seems to be no reason for more than 1 or 2 cars (depending if they work in shifts or all simultaneously).

My bf has shared a car and stayed in the same hotel as his coworkers on each of the several trips he has gone on.  My PhD advisor expects us to save money where possible when we travel, including room-sharing (and this seems to be the standard for other groups as well). You could argue grad school is different, but I still say it's the equivalent of an entry level job in academia. :)

But, if it is a longer trip and there is more free time involved, coworkers shouldn't be "chained" to each other.

dragoncar

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #14 on: November 06, 2013, 11:26:38 AM »
No one has asked how much free time they actually have...friends of mine who have gone on this sort of trip tend to work 12-14 hr days on site and not have too much time to 'explore' or do other personal business while on the trip. In that case, there seems to be no reason for more than 1 or 2 cars (depending if they work in shifts or all simultaneously).

My bf has shared a car and stayed in the same hotel as his coworkers on each of the several trips he has gone on.  My PhD advisor expects us to save money where possible when we travel, including room-sharing (and this seems to be the standard for other groups as well). You could argue grad school is different, but I still say it's the equivalent of an entry level job in academia. :)

But, if it is a longer trip and there is more free time involved, coworkers shouldn't be "chained" to each other.

I definitely asked this and did not get a response.

For those advocating car and hotel sharing while away from home, I certainly hope you also do the same at home.  Invite coworkers to bunk in your room, take your car out for a spin, or borrow your bike.  Otherwise, you are frankly wasting resources.

galliver

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #15 on: November 06, 2013, 12:37:08 PM »
Holy cow the complainypantsness! Why is it the employers responsibility to pay for your extracurricular activities? Do you expect them to pay for the gas for the rental car too?

If you want to go somewhere after work I feel it should be on your dime regarless of what city you happen to be in. You want to go sightseeing after work? They should not be expected to pay for your vacation. Simple.

If I had to travel for work and they wanted us to bunk two to a room I would understand and likely pay for my own room without a word of complaint because it's my perogative to do so.

Pretty sure what is being discussed is the standard of reasonable accommodations by the employer. This does vary by industry; grad students do bunk two to a room when possible at conferences, whereas workers in high-level finance/business get to fly business class and stay in fancy hotels, if I'm not mistaken. Don't personally know any.

I believe most other businesses stand by providing the worker a comfortable, private room; meals; and a way to get around (e.g. rental car). Including gas. And they are responsible for any sightseeing the worker decides to do when they aren't working because (a) it's too hard to separate from "legitimate" business travel (b) it's not like the worker can bring their own car, typically (assuming it's far enough to fly) (c) it's unreasonable to expect someone to just work/eat/sleep for more than a few days at a time. Relaxation time boosts worker productivity.

dragoncar

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #16 on: November 06, 2013, 01:04:45 PM »
Holy cow the complainypantsness! Why is it the employers responsibility to pay for your extracurricular activities? Do you expect them to pay for the gas for the rental car too?

If you want to go somewhere after work I feel it should be on your dime regarless of what city you happen to be in. You want to go sightseeing after work? They should not be expected to pay for your vacation. Simple.

If I had to travel for work and they wanted us to bunk two to a room I would understand and likely pay for my own room without a word of complaint because it's my perogative to do so.

Pretty sure what is being discussed is the standard of reasonable accommodations by the employer. This does vary by industry; grad students do bunk two to a room when possible at conferences, whereas workers in high-level finance/business get to fly business class and stay in fancy hotels, if I'm not mistaken. Don't personally know any.

I believe most other businesses stand by providing the worker a comfortable, private room; meals; and a way to get around (e.g. rental car). Including gas. And they are responsible for any sightseeing the worker decides to do when they aren't working because (a) it's too hard to separate from "legitimate" business travel (b) it's not like the worker can bring their own car, typically (assuming it's far enough to fly) (c) it's unreasonable to expect someone to just work/eat/sleep for more than a few days at a time. Relaxation time boosts worker productivity.

Right, they aren't obligated by law to provide this standard.  But the industry standard is to provide the things the employee is accustomed to at home.

If people are saying employees should carpool whenever possible, sure, that's good for the environment.  But I think the employer is doing right by its employees by letting them choose.  The employer doesn't mandate carpools into the home office, so it shouldn't mandate carpools after work hours in a remote location.

acroy

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #17 on: November 06, 2013, 01:22:47 PM »
No one has asked how much free time they actually have...friends of mine who have gone on this sort of trip tend to work 12-14 hr days on site and not have too much time to 'explore' or do other personal business while on the trip. In that case, there seems to be no reason for more than 1 or 2 cars (depending if they work in shifts or all simultaneously).

this is generally the schedule, it's busy 12-14hr days.
It just boggles my mind when (such as next Monday) 4 people who work for the same company are all going to get on the same plane in NY,
fly to TX,
get off the plane,
all go to the same Avis desk and each get a separate car,
 follow each other to the same hotel 30 miles away (which provides free shuttle),
get up in the Am and take separate cars 4 miles to my facility (from a hotel with free shuttle service),
stay 12hrs,
all drive separately back to the hotel,
eat across the street at Carinos (ok I'm guessing here, maybe they'll split up and do something crazy like try Red Lobster),
Get up in Tuesday AM,
drive their separate cars back to the airport,
get on the same plane back to NY.

It's their company's money, but egads the waste!

When I travel for the Company I generally try to make a power-trip of it, share the car, work hard, get'r done, get back on the plane and HOME. Every now and then I'll combine a trip with a personal weekend of sightseeing in the destination city -  that's cool. I've gotten to see a few cool cities that way.

gooki

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #18 on: November 06, 2013, 02:48:48 PM »
Why don't they all take separate private jets?

But seriously have they not heard of taxis?

GuitarStv

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #19 on: November 07, 2013, 09:31:58 AM »
Depending on distances, it might be cheaper to rent from a corporate account than take taxis everywhere.


FWIW, I see the problem as being one of motivation.  The employees have no motivation to be efficient since the company is picking up the tab.  The company picks up the tab because they're asking the employees to do something that's outside of their traditional job description.

Ideally the company should just give the employees a per diem for car rentals/food/etc. and then let the employees sort it out.  I bet you that if they did that all of a sudden everyone would be much more inclined to carpool, since it means more cash in their pockets.

Jamesqf

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #20 on: November 07, 2013, 11:05:28 AM »
Right, they aren't obligated by law to provide this standard.  But the industry standard is to provide the things the employee is accustomed to at home.

Sure, exactly as my past employers weren't required by law to pay me more than minimum wage.  But if they expected me to keep working for them, they did :-)

Now I agree that it might be better all around for the employer to pay a per diem and let the employees choose whether to carpool, share rooms, or whatever.  (And back in the days when I had to travel for work, they did, so I'd sometimes fly my own plane, putting the bike in the back, and stay with friends instead of at hotels.)
« Last Edit: November 07, 2013, 12:04:04 PM by Jamesqf »

dragoncar

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #21 on: November 07, 2013, 12:27:48 PM »
Right, they aren't obligated by law to provide this standard.  But the industry standard is to provide the things the employee is accustomed to at home.
Industry standard? You seem to be making assumptions about what industry they're in... I can see it as standard for high level employees but I think when a group travels like this is more mid-level and thus not so standard

We had a friend working for a very well paying government contractor get put on a long-term assignment where we live (and quite a ways away from his home). He got his own hotel room but a group of 6 or so guys shared two rental cars. They were given a awesome per diem for food and gas (DH and I got a few free meals out of it) but they were expected to share the cars.

Both of my parents have had to do some travel for work in the past and I believe that if there was a group like OP was talking about they were sharing cars as well.

I'm sure this is standard in their industry, otherwise why would the company waste money? 

huadpe

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Re: Multiple rental cars
« Reply #22 on: November 07, 2013, 02:22:14 PM »
As someone who manages a small business, I can see why they'd let each person get their own car.  It can substantially reduce morale to be less than generous with this kind of stuff.  If it were my position, I'd give each person an allotment to spend on the car or to keep as cash, which was enough to rent an economy car.  If they want to go 2-3 per a car, then they can each get a little extra for them to keep, but if one guy really wants his own car, he's not forced into a sharing arrangement that gets everyone grumbling.  Amenities on business trips are a form of compensation, and it's generally poor form as an employer to shortchange your employees on compensation.