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Top 10 Car Rental Agent Certifications

This article covers the most popular and useful certifications for car rental agents, providing an overview of the benefits and requirements of each.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 16 min read

Certifications for car rental agents are important in the job market for several reasons. First, certifications demonstrate that an individual has the knowledge and skills necessary to do the job effectively. This can give employers confidence in the agent’s ability to provide quality service and meet customer needs. Second, certifications can help an individual stand out from other candidates in a competitive job market. Having a certification shows potential employers that the applicant is serious about their career and willing to put in extra effort to be successful. Finally, certifications also provide evidence of continuing education and professional development, which is increasingly valued by employers.

The purpose of this article is to review the top certifications for Car Rental Agents and explain how they can enhance a car rental agent's career.

What are Car Rental Agent Certifications?

Car rental agent certification is a specialized training program designed to equip car rental agents with the knowledge and skills necessary to successfully handle the daily operations of a car rental business. This certification program provides agents with an understanding of the industry, its regulations, customer service principles, and best practices. The coursework includes topics such as vehicle selection, pricing strategies, vehicle maintenance and repair, customer service techniques, and marketing.

Having car rental agent certification can be beneficial for both employers and employees alike. For employers, having certified agents on staff can help reduce operational costs by providing a more efficient and cost-effective approach to running their business. Certified agents are also better equipped to handle customer inquiries and complaints in a professional manner which can lead to increased customer satisfaction and loyalty.

For employees, having this certification can open up new job opportunities in the industry as well as provide them with an edge over other applicants when applying for jobs. Having this certification reflects a commitment to professionalism and excellence which employers look for when hiring new staff members. Furthermore, certified agents have access to various resources such as industry publications which can help them stay up-to-date on the latest news in the industry as well as keep abreast of any changes or developments that could affect their role in the organization.

Pro Tip: Make sure that your car rental agent is certified and has the proper training to handle any situation that may arise during the rental process. This will ensure that you are dealing with a professional who knows how to handle any potential issues and provide quality customer service.

Related: What does a Car Rental Agent do?

Top 10 Car Rental Agent Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Car Rental Agents today.

1. Certified Car Rental Agent (CCRA)

Certified Car Rental Agent (CCRA) is a professional certification program designed to teach car rental agents the best practices for providing excellent customer service. The CCRA program is offered by the National Association of Certified Car Rental Agents (NACCRRA). It takes approximately 10 hours to complete the course and obtain the certification.

To get CCRA certified, you must first register with NACCRRA. Once your registration is approved, you will be given access to an online training portal where you can take the course. The cost of the course is $249 USD and includes all materials needed to complete the program. Upon successful completion of the course, you will receive a certificate of completion and be eligible for discounts on car rental services from participating companies.

2. Certified Automotive Rental Manager (CARM)

Certified Automotive Rental Manager (CARM) is a professional certification program designed to provide individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary to manage a successful automotive rental business. The CARM program is administered by the National Automobile Rental Association (NARA) and provides an industry-recognized credential for those who have successfully completed the program's requirements.

The CARM program consists of two parts: a written examination and an on-site practicum. The written exam covers topics such as customer service, rental operations, vehicle maintenance, safety, marketing, accounting, and legal issues related to operating an automotive rental business. The practicum involves hands-on training in areas such as vehicle inspection and maintenance, customer service, fleet management, and other operational aspects of running a car rental business.

In order to become certified through the CARM program, applicants must first submit an application form along with proof of completion of the required coursework. Once approved, applicants must then pass both the written exam and practicum in order to receive their certification.

The cost of becoming certified through the CARM program varies depending on which courses are chosen. Generally speaking, it will cost between $500-$1,000 USD for all required course materials and exams. Additionally, there may be fees associated with taking the written exam or practicum at certain locations.

It typically takes between 6-12 months to complete all requirements for certification through the CARM program.

3. Certified Vehicle Rental Professional (CVRP)

Certified Vehicle Rental Professional (CVRP) is a professional certification program designed to recognize and reward individuals who demonstrate expertise in the vehicle rental industry. The program is administered by the National Vehicle Leasing Association (NVLA).

The CVRP certification is awarded after successful completion of an online exam that covers topics such as vehicle rental operations, customer service, fleet management, vehicle selection and pricing, safety and security, and other related topics. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions and takes approximately two hours to complete.

In order to be eligible for the CVRP certification, applicants must have at least two years of experience in the vehicle rental industry or have completed a minimum of 15 hours of approved coursework related to the industry. Applicants must also pass a background check before taking the exam.

The cost for the CVRP certification exam is $200 USD. The fee includes access to study materials, registration for the exam, and a one-year membership with NVLA. After passing the exam, applicants will receive their official CVRP certificate from NVLA.

4. National Association of Fleet Administrators (NAFA) Certification

The National Association of Fleet Administrators (NAFA) Certification Program is an industry-recognized credential that demonstrates a professional’s expertise in fleet management. It is designed to recognize the knowledge, skills, and abilities of those who manage fleets of vehicles for businesses, government agencies, and other organizations.

The NAFA Certification Program consists of three levels: Certified Automotive Fleet Manager (CAFM®), Master Automotive Fleet Manager (MAFM®), and Doctorate Automotive Fleet Manager (DAFM®). The CAFM® is the entry-level certification and requires two years of fleet experience as well as passing a written exam. The MAFM® requires five years of fleet management experience and passing a written exam. The DAFM® requires seven years of fleet management experience as well as passing a written exam.

To get certified, individuals must complete an application form and submit it to NAFA along with their resume, proof of education, proof of fleet experience, and the applicable fee. After their application is accepted, they will be sent instructions on how to register for the exams. Once they have passed all required exams, they will receive their certificate in the mail.

The cost for each level varies depending on whether or not you are already a member of NAFA. For non-members, the cost for the CAFM® certification is $375; for MAFM®, it's $475; and for DAFM®, it's $575. If you are already a member of NAFA, then you can save up to 20% off these prices.

5. International Car Rental and Leasing Association (ICRLA) Certification

The International Car Rental and Leasing Association (ICRLA) is a non-profit organization that provides certification for car rental and leasing companies. This certification is designed to ensure that the company meets the highest standards of customer service, safety, and professionalism. The ICRLA certification process involves an extensive review of the company's policies and procedures, as well as its customer service practices.

The ICRLA certification process typically takes approximately two months to complete, depending on the size of the company. The first step in obtaining ICRLA certification is to submit an application packet that includes a detailed description of the company’s operations, including its policies and procedures. Once this information has been reviewed by an ICRLA representative, they will then conduct an onsite inspection of the company’s facilities and operations. If all requirements are met, the company will be awarded their ICRLA certification.

The cost of obtaining ICRLA certification can vary depending on the size and scope of the business. Generally speaking, it can range anywhere from $500 to $2,000 or more. This cost covers both the application fee and any additional fees associated with conducting an onsite inspection or review of the business’s operations.

In addition to providing assurance that a car rental or leasing company meets industry standards for customer service, safety, and professionalism, having an ICRLA certification also helps businesses stand out from their competition by demonstrating their commitment to excellence in these areas.

6. American Car Rental Association (ACRA) Certification

The American Car Rental Association (ACRA) Certification is a certification program designed to recognize car rental companies that have achieved excellence in customer service, safety, and operational standards. It is the only industry-recognized certification program for car rental companies.

To become certified, car rental companies must meet a set of standards established by ACRA. These standards include having a valid business license, insurance coverage, and a commitment to providing excellent customer service. Companies must also demonstrate compliance with local laws and regulations, as well as provide proof of financial stability.

The process of obtaining ACRA Certification typically takes between 8-12 weeks from the time of application submission to final approval. Companies must submit an application form along with supporting documents such as their business license, insurance policies, and financial statements. Once the application is approved by ACRA’s Certification Committee, the company will be issued a certificate of recognition that can be displayed at their location or website.

The cost of obtaining ACRA Certification varies depending on the size and complexity of the company’s operations. Generally speaking, fees range from $500-$2,000 USD per year for small businesses and up to $10,000 USD per year for larger car rental companies.

7. National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Certification

The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) is a non-profit organization that was established in 1972 to improve the quality of vehicle repair and service through the testing and certification of automotive technicians. ASE Certification is a voluntary program that tests technicians on their knowledge and skills in specific areas of automotive repair and service. Technicians must pass an ASE exam in order to become certified in their specialty.

It typically takes about six months to prepare for an ASE exam, although some people may be able to complete it faster depending on their experience level. To get started, you will need to purchase the appropriate study materials from ASE or other vendors and then begin studying for the exam. You can also take practice tests online or attend an ASE-approved training program to help you prepare.

Once you are ready to take the exam, you will need to register with ASE and pay the associated fee. The cost of each test varies depending on which one you are taking, but most range from $30-$50 per test. Once you have passed all required exams, you will receive your official ASE Certification card in the mail.

ASE Certification is a great way for automotive technicians to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in their field, as well as show customers that they are qualified professionals who can provide quality service.

8. Certified Automotive Fleet Specialist (CAFS)

Certified Automotive Fleet Specialist (CAFS) is a professional certification program offered by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). It is designed to recognize individuals who have demonstrated expertise in managing and maintaining fleets of vehicles. The CAFS certification is valid for five years and must be renewed every five years.

To become a Certified Automotive Fleet Specialist, you must pass an exam administered by ASE. This exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions covering topics related to fleet management, maintenance, and operations. You must also have at least two years of experience in automotive fleet management or equivalent education.

The cost of the CAFS certification exam is $90 for ASE members and $120 for non-members. If you need to retake the exam, there is an additional fee of $60 per attempt.

Once you pass the CAFS certification exam, you will receive a certificate from ASE that will be valid for five years. After that time, you will need to renew your certification by taking another exam or completing continuing education credits in order to maintain your status as a Certified Automotive Fleet Specialist.

9. National Safety Council Defensive Driving Course

The National Safety Council Defensive Driving Course is an online driver safety course designed to help drivers reduce their risk of being involved in a crash. The course covers topics such as defensive driving techniques, hazard recognition and avoidance, speed and space management, and vehicle maintenance. It also includes information on how to handle emergency situations, how to interact with other drivers on the road, and how to be a responsible driver.

The course typically takes about 8 hours to complete. It can be taken at your own pace and you can log in and out as needed. To get the course, you can visit the National Safety Council website or call their toll-free number for more information.

The cost of the National Safety Council Defensive Driving Course varies depending on where you take it. Generally speaking, it will cost around $50-$75 for the entire course.

10. IATA/UFTAA Foundation Diploma in Travel and Tourism

The IATA/UFTAA Foundation Diploma in Travel and Tourism is a professional qualification designed to provide a comprehensive introduction to the travel and tourism industry. The diploma provides students with an understanding of the principles, practices, and procedures of the travel industry, including airline operations, ticketing and reservations systems, ground handling operations, hospitality services, and customer service.

The program consists of six modules that cover topics such as geography and culture; air transport; tourism products; travel agency operations; customer service; and marketing. Each module is divided into two parts: theory and practical application. The program takes between 6-12 months to complete depending on the student’s pace.

To get the IATA/UFTAA Foundation Diploma in Travel and Tourism, students must first register for the program through IATA or UFTAA's official website. After registration, students can access all course materials online or download them for offline use. Students are also required to attend classes at an approved training center or take part in online learning sessions.

The cost of the program varies depending on which training center you choose to attend classes at but typically ranges from $1,500 - $2,000 USD.

Do You Really Need a Car Rental Agent Certificate?

No, a car rental agent certificate is not necessary to work as a car rental agent. It is not required by any state or federal agency, nor is it required by any company. However, having a certificate may be beneficial in some cases. A car rental agent certificate can provide you with the knowledge and skills needed to properly interact with customers and handle transactions. It can also help you understand the industry better and understand how to best serve customers.

A car rental agent certificate can also demonstrate your commitment to the profession and show potential employers that you are serious about your career choice. Having a certification may give you an edge over other job applicants who do not have one. Additionally, some companies may require their employees to hold certain certifications in order to work for them, so having a certificate could make you more competitive when applying for jobs in the field.

In short, while a car rental agent certificate is not essential for working in the industry, it may be helpful in some cases and could potentially give you an advantage when applying for jobs or promotions.

Related: Car Rental Agent Resume Examples

FAQs About Car Rental Agent Certifications

1. What are the requirements for becoming a car rental agent?

Answer: To become a car rental agent, you must have a valid driver's license, a high school diploma or GED, and customer service experience. You may also need to pass certain tests and obtain certifications from the rental company.

2. What type of certification do I need to work as a car rental agent?

Answer: Depending on the company, you may need to obtain one or more certifications from the American Car Rental Association (ACRA). Common certifications include Certified Car Rental Agent (CCRA), Certified Car Rental Executive (CCRE) and Certified Car Rental Manager (CCRM).

3. How long does it take to complete a car rental certification?

Answer: The length of time it takes to complete a certification varies depending on the certification you are pursuing. Generally speaking, most certifications can be completed in 4-6 weeks with some taking up to 12 weeks or longer.

4. Is there an exam associated with obtaining car rental certifications?

Answer: Yes, some certifications require you to pass an exam in order to receive your certificate or qualification. Typically, these exams cover topics such as customer service, sales techniques and industry regulations.

5. Are there any online courses available for obtaining car rental certifications?

Answer: Yes, there are several online courses available that provide training for car rental agents and managers seeking certification from ACRA. These courses often include lectures and quizzes covering topics such as customer service, sales techniques and industry regulations that will help prepare you for the certification exams.