Buying American-made doesn’t just impact us when we buy things; it also impacts us when we rent.
Yesterday, I had to rent a car for a trip I was taking from Virginia to central Pennsylvania. I reserved an economy American-made car, the least expensive of all the cars the rental car company I was using had available.
When I got to the rental facility to pick up the car, they said that all they had left was an import in the economy size. I informed them that I only drive American-made cars, and would not accept an import. They suggested I upgrade to a more expensive American-made mid-sized car. I told them I would take whatever American-made car they wanted to give me, but I was not paying for an upgrade because they don’t keep enough American-made cars in their fleet.
When I pointed to the Buy American Challenge t-shirt I was wearing, they knew I wasn’t budging. The conversation was over. They upgraded me to a Ford Focus free of charge.
Ford Focus is a really nice car by the way. After driving it the last couple days, I am giving it strong consideration for my next vehicle. The Ford Focus is made in America and has 90% domestic parts content, the highest in the industry.
Okay, here is the real reason I wrote this post. I encourage everyone to request an American-made car when they make a reservation for a rental car. In my experience, most rental cars I’ve rented have been American-made. But lately I’ve been noticing more imported rentals. I believe that if enough people will ask for American-made cars when they make a reservation, the rental car companies will take notice, and stock their fleets with more American cars. Either that, or they’ll be giving us lots of free upgrades.
If rental car companies begin buying more American-made cars, that would be HUGE. These companies buy thousands of cars every year. A decision by these companies to buy more American-made cars could be an enormous boon to the industry, and could create thousands of good-paying American jobs. This would impact the communities where cars are made and the communities where all the parts used to make those cars are made.
It costs absolutely nothing to simply request an American-made car when you make a rental car reservation, but it could mean so many jobs if you, and others, will do it consistently. So next time you rent a car, make that simple request, and know you will be doing your part to create American jobs.
Until next time, here’s to doing what we can to support our country by buying American.