The €10 billion competition: rent-a-car companies have to bid to stay in Spanish airports

The €10 billion competition: rent-a-car companies have to bid to stay in Spanish airports

Following the recent handling contract award by Aena, who are the management company of airports in Spain, the Canary Islands, and the Balearic Islands, the operator has initiated the process of renewing the leases for rent-a-car companies at Spanish airports, set to take effect in November 2024.

Aena's Commercial Director, Maria José Cuenda, announced the key aspects of the tender on Thursday, which will be publicly tendered at the beginning of the next year and are worth a total of €10 billion.

At the start of 2024, the rent-a-car tender will start at 38 airports across Spain, offering spaces for 21,700 vehicles (3,500 more than in the previous tender). The number of available licenses will also increase to 218 (48 more than at present), with the possibility of establishing two new maintenance centres at Palma de Mallorca and Málaga-Costa del Sol airports.

According to Aena, this is one of the largest rental car tenders in the world, with new contracts of between 5 and 8 years being awarded. Currently, Aena has contracts with 16 different operators at 34 airports in its network, which will remain in effect until October 31st, 2024.

On average, 4.6 million driverless vehicles are rented each year at Aena's airports in Spain. This line of business ranks third in Aena's commercial revenue, generating sales worth approximately €1.2 billion annually for rental companies.

Aena reports that the new tender will be "a more flexible model" where companies can select the desired number of spaces with rents tailored to their profiles.

The airport operator aims to maximize the value of this business line and attract as many operators as possible to enhance the quality of service for passengers. To achieve this, they are focused on "digitalizing the service and implementing the latest industry technologies."