Thrifty's $800,000 Cairns car wash
THRIFTY Car Rental's new $800,000 car wash centre at Cairns airport will serve as a prototype to be rolled out across Australia.
The new 313sq m wash-bay facility will be used as a model with other similar operations opening at Launceston, Brisbane and Perth in coming months.
Thrifty Australia’s director of operations Kayleen Collins said the investment was a vote of confidence in Cairns and its future.
Tropical North Queensland is very important to us. We’ve invested $800,000 which means we are here for the long term,” she said.
“The business is growing here and we want it to continue.”
Ms Collins said it would mean a quicker turnaround for customers with the previous facility about 2km from the airport.
The car wash, office, staff amenities and car parking were built by Cairns builders Carlson and took nine months.
The car wash recycles water and uses biodegradable chemicals.
“We used to do all our vehicles by hand but this is an automatic wash which means we can put a car through in one minute to 90 seconds.
“We can put hundreds of cars through in a day during the peak season,” Ms Collins said.
Thrifty stocks up to 700 vehicles in Cairns during the high tourism season.
Area manager Marika Andersson said the investment would “underpin Thrifty’s growth in the region over the coming years”.
She said the company was hosting its Australasian annual conference in Cairns from August 9-10 with up to 150 delegates from throughout Australia, New Zealand, the United Arab Emirates and the US expected to attend.
“Thrifty is the only 100 per cent Australian-owned major car rental company, so it’s vital for us that we help support the Australian tourism industry and the wonderful attractions we have in TNQ for the world to visit,” Ms Andersson said.
“That’s why we wanted to hold our annual conference in Cairns and invite key managers within our business to experience Cairns and understand why we are so committed to development within this region.”
Cairns Airport chief executive officer Kevin Brown said Thrifty was a valued business partner.
“Their investment in this new infrastructure to support their operations here highlights their confidence in the future growth of our airport and our region,” he said.
He described the facility as “state of the art” and it was “leaps ahead” of what he had seen at many airports throughout the world.
Tourism Tropical North Queensland chief executive officer Rob Giason said it was an example of a national company having confidence in the Cairns region.
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Confidence in Cairns: Thrifty Car Rentals area manager Marika Andersson officially opens the new $800,000 car wash and cleaning facility at Cairns airport. Picture: Stewart McLEAN