Hertz Rolls Out an Faster Airport Exit So You Don't Hail An Uber

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
hertz rolls out an faster airport exit so you dont hail an uber

Once upon a time, your transportation options upon touching down at a U.S. airport involved hailing a taxi, renting a car, or taking a shuttle to your hotel. Those options still exist, but business travellers and tourists can now waltz out the door and into a number of app-based ride-hailing services and a growing list, depending on location, of short-term, app-based car rental services that don’t carry any of the usual names seen at the rental line.

Hertz clearly felt that omitting a couple of minutes from the rental counter-to-destination trip might help it stay ahead of those pesky mobility upstarts. Enter the magic of biometrics.

Announced today, Hertz Fast Lane (officially, Hertz Fast Lane Powered by Clear) is now in operation at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, ahead of a 2019 rollout at 40 airports, including JFK, LAX, and SFO. The rental agency claims the new tech will allow customers to get on the road faster.

Available to Gold Plus Rewards members, the service relies on biometrics (fingerprints, iris scans, and facial scans) for its checkout system. To use it, you first need a Clear account with your biometric data contained within, linked to your Gold Plus Rewards account. Grab a car, and your physical identity will be confirmed via facial scan an automated kiosk at the exit gate.

“Prior to the use of Clear, we have an exit gate process that takes two minutes on average,” said Jodi Allen, chief marketing officer at Hertz, told Bloomberg. “As a result of putting Clear in place we’re able to get our customers out the exit gate in 30 seconds or less, which is a 75 percent improvement. On Monday mornings in Atlanta where there are surge customers, making sure we can get people out significantly faster makes everybody’s experience better.”

Hertz claims Clear is free to use if you’re a rewards member, and there’s discounts available for Clear’s time-saving airport service.

While it doesn’t erase the existence of Uber, Lyft, Maven, ZipCar, or Turo (et al), smoothing out the traditional rental experience is one way of keeping customers who now have all the choice in the world.

[Image: Hertz]

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3 of 16 comments
  • NeilM NeilM on Dec 12, 2018

    Screw the whole fingerprint thing. What I want to know is where Hertz has a bunch of those Lotuses for rent, and what's the nearest racetrack?

  • Gasser Gasser on Dec 12, 2018

    I gave up on Hertz years ago, when the premium price still got me only worn and dirty cars. This last time I made a reservation with Enterprise. First I waited 15 min for their bus. Then the bus made the grand tour of O'Hare. Then I got to their rental office and the line (with two agents working) was about 8 people long, in front of me. I pressed the Uber app and had a ride in literally 3 minutes. Good bye rental cars in Chicago!!!! Whatever extra I spend on Uber is compensated for by not paying to park a rental at either a hotel or a restaurant. I also never have to look for a gas station with an Uber or pay $8/gallon if I am tight on time when returning.

    • Krhodes1 Krhodes1 on Dec 13, 2018

      I don't think I have ever gotten an Uber faster than the time it takes to pickup a rental car as a Gold Member anywhere in the US. Possible exceptions being the handful of airports where the Ubers line up like a cab rank. I do use Uber a fair amount, but only because I am someplace where having a car is inconvenient due to lack of parking or cost of parking. If it weren't for the rewards program, I too would have bailed on Hertz by now. But everyone else has rewards that expire, as far as I know.

  • Cprescott I remember when Fords were affordable.
  • Cprescott As a once very LOYAL FORD buyer, I had to replace my 22 year old Ford (bought new in 1997) once it finally started to have problems at 180k miles. I would have gladly purchased something like this from Ford but they abandoned me as a car buyer. Oddly, Hyundai still builds cars in a variety of flavors so I became a customer of theirs and am very happy. Likely will consider another once this one gets up in mileage.
  • SCE to AUX A friend once struck a mounted tire that was laying flat in the middle of her lane on the PA Turnpike. She was in a low late-90s Grand Prix, and the impact destroyed the facia, core support, radiators, oil pan, transmission, subframe, and suspension. They fixed it all.
  • Dukeisduke Lol, it's not exactly a Chevrolet SS with Holden badging.
  • Dukeisduke Years ago, I was driving southbound along North Central Expressway (south of Mockingbird Lane, for locals), and watched a tire and wheel fall out of the bed of a pickup (no tailgate), bounce along, then centerpunch the front end of a Honda Accord. It wasn't pretty.