There are few people who know the roads of Papua New Guinea better than Jon McMullen.
Jon is the General Manager of Avis, the country’s leading car hire firm. He travels continually between the company’s ten branch offices which are dotted everywhere from Manus to Madang.
“In Port Moresby it is fine to drive a car like a Toyota Corona,” he explained, “but if you need to get around the steep hills of Mount Hagan a four-wheel drive Land Cruiser would be much more suitable.We have cars to cater for every type of customer and every type of terrain. Whether it be a smart executive model like a Mazda 626 or simply a Hilux utility, we will be able to provide it. Whatever the vehicle we always pride ourselves on making sure it is 100% safe and reliable. Avis puts enormous emphasis on customer service.”
Avis’s head office in Port Moresby, which boasts a selection of 90 cars, is only a stone’s throw from Jackson’s airport. This is a tactical location as the airport is the place where the bulk of car hire business is generated.The business has been running successfully for the last 20 years and now has over 50 staff. Despite its many offices throughout the country, Avis has plans to spread its wings even more and another branch is soon due to open in the Milne Bay area.
The company offers an extensive training scheme to all its staff, which helps them get to grips with every aspect of the business. Avis is well-known for looking after its employees and as a result secures their loyalty.“I think seeing the staff develop as they gain in experience is one of the most rewarding aspects of my job,” said Jon. “Obviously knowing that the business is going from strength to strength is also very gratifying.”
“The principal reason I came to Papua New Guinea was to face fresh challenges. This country has certainly provided that. We have to rent out cars to everybody from politicians to tourists. The amount of businessmen hiring vehicles has also increased, especially with the expansion in mining and forestry.