Too Many Keys


From behind the counter, she handed me keys for the rental car as she gave directions to the parking lot.

As I walked to the parking area, I looked at the keys. There were three identical keys, two key fobs, and a plastic identification tag connected by a swaged cable.

If you’ve rented a car recently, you may have had a similar experience.

Why do they give duplicate (and sometimes triplicate) keys, on an inseparable key ring, to the customer?

Because it’s easier for the rental company.

It’s easier to resell the vehicle with the original keys.

It’s easier to keep the keys together if they are never separated.

It eliminates another system of having to track the location of separate keys.

It’s because keys are expensive to replace.

And by using this technique, the cost of key loss (risk) is transferred to the customer.

If the customer (me in this case) were to lose the keys, they’d be responsible for not only key replacement, but also key programming. These costs could easily rise over $500 for multiple keys and fobs.

Where are you accepting risk in your transactions?

Where is risk being transferred to you with a smile and directions to the parking lot?

Where is your key risk?



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