MINNEAPOLIS, MN--(Marketwire - July 11, 2008) - Next week, Advantage Rent A Car will help introduce a Global Positioning System-based audio device that will help change how tourists and business travelers get to their destinations when renting a car from Advantage.
Advantage is partnering with Tourism Radio to offer a virtual "tour guide" radio service device that combines GPS technology with an informative and entertaining audio service to tell travelers about the surrounding area, road safety warnings and cautions and any points of interest as they approach them in their Advantage rental car. The device, which plugs into the cigarette lighter and broadcasts through the vehicle's radio, will be available for $9.99 per day to be used in rental cars at Advantage's Maui car rental and Honolulu car rental locations.
"We all know that locals have great stories, anecdotes and personal history about the areas that they grew up in. Most tourists want this kind of information about their destination as they travel. This is the reason why Tourism Radio has been a successful information tool for tourists over the past three years," said Mark Allewell, Chief Operating Officer of Tourism Radio International.
Three types of information are broadcast on Tourism Radio. The first is "Greater Area" audio covering information specific to the area that the vehicle is traveling through. Hourly radio shows make up the second level of information aired and the shows cover a wide range of subjects from local cooking to local music. And lastly the "Intelipoint" information alerts the listener to the area's landmarks and highlights as the vehicle approaches or passes them.
"Tourism Radio uses patented technology in their system to track the location of the user and play location-based information and points of interest," said Allewell. "The strength of the product, however, is in the audio content. Our DJs are locals and whether in the United States, New Zealand, South Africa or Spain, the formula is the same."
Mary Jane Wells, Executive Vice President of Advantage, said, "We are excited to work with Tourism Radio in the United States as an exclusive provider of this product. As a company, we are always looking for ways to enhance the customer experience and this is the perfect compliment."
"Location-based information is now part of people's everyday lives, be it having a GPS service for your vehicle or checking Google earth on your phone. Our goal as a company is to mould those into one simple solution; location-based audio content for tourists," said Jacques Teichmann, CEO of Tourism Radio Spain. "Forward thinking companies always associate together and thus the partnership between Advantage Rent A Car and Tourism Radio is no surprise. Advantage is growing exponentially in the USA and as Tourism Radio offers a product that no other company in the world offers, the two marry perfectly together. Our plan is to have 2,000 Tourism Radio decoders in the USA by mid to late 2009, starting off in Hawaii this July."
Advantage Rent A Car is privately held by Denny Hecker Family Ventures, with executive offices in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and whose principal business location is in San Antonio, Texas. Advantage serves travel and leisure, lifestyle, business, government and insurance replacement rentals in more than 80 U.S. locations and 36 affiliates internationally. Advantage is America's first major car rental company committed to going 100 percent green and providing environmentally conscientious travelers with a fleet of fuel efficient vehicles by the end of 2010. For a complete list of car rentals, locations, franchise opportunities, promotions and other information, please visit www.advantage.com.
Tourism Radio was founded in 2005 by Mark Allewell, a South African entrepreneur and now Chief Operating Officer for Tourism Radio International. The company was sold in 2006 to a European venture capitalist, which expanded Tourism Radio's reach from South Africa to countries such as Namibia and Spain. In addition to Hawaii in the United States, Tourism Radio plans to expand to New Zealand and Australia by the end of 2008. For more information, please visit www.tourismradio.info.
The Denny Hecker group of companies includes more than 200 companies with operations in automobile dealerships, fleet sales and leasing, daily automobile and motorcycle rental, real estate brokerage, commercial and residential real estate development, aviation, hospitality, and technology. For more information, please visit www.dennyhecker.com.