Hertz offers free car rentals to healthcare workers in New York City

The rental car industry is reeling from the effects of coronavirus lockdowns

Starting today, healthcare workers in New York City can get free rental cars from Hertz at any one of the company's 19 NYC-area locations. The promotion is scheduled to last through April 30, 2020. The deal includes economy, compact, midsize and full-size cars and compact, small and regular SUVs and is available to workers with valid medical IDs and driver's licenses. The one-time rental term can be up to one full month.

"It's vital that healthcare workers have safe and reliable transportation during this time, and we are eager to help," Kathryn Marinello, Hertz President and CEO said in a statement. She highlighted the reduced number of rental contracts the company is seeing due to actions designed to help slow the spread of the coronavirus as key to Hertz's ability to offer the service. "The dramatic decrease in travel means we have more vehicles to serve the most critical needs of the community," she said.

Last week, Bloomberg reported that Hertz was one of three rental car agencies to sign a letter addressed to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin asking that they be included in the federal government's plans to prop up industries damaged by the coronavirus pandemic. In an interview, Marinello said, "We are being hit by this as hard as airlines, maybe harder. ... The volume just went away. We have had the same kind of drop-off that the airlines have had." Another Bloomberg article says the company began laying workers off without pay on March 21.

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