Car Rental Reopening Checklists

Lower the risk of spreading coronavirus with an effective car rental reopening plan

Published 4 Aug 2020

Car Rental Reopening

The COVID-19 pandemic globally affects the economy as businesses need to comply with temporary closure including the tourism industry. With few people traveling, car rental companies are also affected by this global movement. As we enter the “new normal” phase, there are countries that are slowly reopening their borders to travelers and allow businesses to reopen. This phase, however, may change depending on the modified restrictions based on the number of recorded COVID-19 positive cases. With that scenario, car rental companies have to plan and restructure their systems accordingly to provide a safe car rental reopening for employees and customers.

This article features:

  • car rental health and safety strategies;
  • get safely back to business with iAuditor; and
  • free ready-to-use and customizable car reopening checklists.

Car Rental Health and Safety Strategies

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has divided the level of risk exposure to 1) very high, 2) high, 3) medium, and 4) lower risk depending on the job tasks of an employee. Car rental employees will likely fall to medium exposure risk as their job may have frequent contact with travelers who return from different locations with widespread COVID-19 transmission. As preparation for the business reopening, employers should implement precautionary control strategies based on a thorough hazard assessment. The following are the health and safety strategies for business key areas that could help car rental reopening:


It is paramount for the business owners to ensure the health and safety of their employees when planning to reopen their business. As a contingency plan, car rental businesses should enforce strict compliance in promoting healthy hygiene practices including frequent handwashing and applying the proper coughing etiquette. They have to comply with employee social distancing with at least 6 feet apart and require them to wear face masks to protect other people in case the employee is infected. Monitoring employee temperature and recording travel histories and other health concerns would help prevent the possibility of illnesses. Also, all employees should be informed of the new guidelines and resumption plans of the business.


The released guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) should be enforced to reduce the risk of employee exposure to the COVID-19 virus. Cleaning and disinfection is an important part of car rental reopening. If the workplace has been completely unoccupied for 7 days or more, normal routine cleaning is enough to reopen the area, otherwise, intensified cleaning is advised. Prior to reopening, car rental companies should prepare the workplace and develop a plan on how to control, monitor, and respond to hazards due to coronavirus. Also, it is advised to limit physical contact with clients. An online transaction for inquiries, reservations, booking, and interviews are recommended.


A vehicle is the most crucial asset of car rental businesses. Prior to reopening, precautionary measures should be in place. All outgoing vehicles should be inspected to ensure cleanliness and roadworthiness. While for returned vehicles it should undergo sanitation and disinfection processes to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

The vehicle interior is the hotspot of possible exposure to the COVID-19 virus since it is a confined space with commonly touched surfaces. The following car areas need extra attention:

  • steering wheel;
  • cupholder;
  • seat belt;
  • inside door handle;
  • gear shifter; and
  • audio volume.

These 6 items were the frequently touched areas that accumulated most of the dirt and bacteria. The CDC recommends cleaning then disinfecting with EPA-approved products to lower the risk of spreading COVID-19 virus to other customers.

Get Safely Back to Business with iAuditor

To ensure the safety of the general public, the CDC has established guidelines that adhere to precautionary measures as businesses return to operation and reopen. With iAuditor by SafetyCulture, car rentals can streamline not only their reopening inspections but the entire safety initiative with a mobile-ready app.

To get you started we have collected car rental reopening checklists designed to help businesses comply with precautionary guidelines set by health organizations.


Disclaimer: Please note that this screening checklist is a hypothetical example and provides basic information only. It is not intended to take the place of medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should also seek your own professional advice to determine if the use of such a checklist is permissible in your workplace or jurisdiction.