A Thrifty Car Rental spokesman said: 'This package gives independents the chance to compete with larger operators. It is also ideal for someone who wants to set up a new car rental company, but doesn't want to start with a franchise.'
So far five firms have signed up to the service, with four others in negotiations. However the ultimate aim of VRS is to expand to a network of about 100 licencees.
The VRS package includes insurance, supply of new and nearly new vehicles, national reservations and computer software. All vehicles are supported by a fleet management package.