Making a Difference with a Purpose - Fairmiles’ René Knip
XpBonaire Feature Story
Imagine arriving by plane at Flamingo Airport for a holiday on the beautiful island of Bonaire. After going through passport control, you pick up your luggage and walk into the arrival hall. There in front of you is René Knip, or one of his team mates, waiting for you. In his hand he holds the keys to a street-wise car that can easily handle all the challenges the roads might present during your stay. You rented the car online. Now there are no lengthy papers to sign that include all kinds of exemptions that will become your responsibility. It is Fairmiles’ belief that keeping it simple is a prerequisite to providing customers the service they desire. It is all to assure you that your enjoyable time on Bonaire starts immediately, hassle free, and stays that way.
It was by coincidence René started this business and that he became passionate about Bonaire. He never intended to make a living on the island. His focus was to buy a house on Curacao, but he was advised to visit Bonaire also. And after a few holidays, he decided to stay and The Brasserie Boudoir was an attractive business at the start. During this period, he rented his car to visitors on the island. This renting out was so successful that his car was hardly available for himself.
This rising demand created a new venue to explore and a challenging adventure. So he sold Boudoir and started a business of renting cars, but with a different philosophy. It was based on the lessons he had learned on Bonaire. No stress. Keep it simple. Be friendly. Act courteous in traffic and seize the day. “Customers who are on vacation want to have fun, no hassle and foremost a 24/7 service they can rely on. The fear of a scratch on the car in Bonaire’s challenging environment can spoil a vacation. And even more, the claim afterwards when the car is brought back. That will create the wrong memory the customer will take home,” according to René.
It became the mission of his company not to offer the best value for the highest price, but to offer a fair value for the best price. So the company Fairmiles was born. Cars with real road experience started crossing the island with tourists who felt themselves safe and relaxed. No company can stay successful without a dedicated team. Here Rene also took a different course. Everyone on his team is equal and each one has a special skill the others respect.
René’s co-partner, Herman Spel, emphasizes that the atmosphere and team spirit is the key to offering the best service to all the customers. It creates the personal touch they experience from the moment they arrive until the easy return of the car at the airport just before leaving Bonaire.
Friso, Sherman and Boggy are the teammates who work in the background. Their dedication can be felt once you enter their garage. They provide 24/7 service with all their skills and dedication for more than just rental cars. The garage itself has an appearance that fits with the philosophy. The main office is located in an old bus that gives you the feeling that it drove through the front wall. It also expresses the different approach the Fairmiles Company wants to offer - service with a smile, but a genuine one, one that also brings a smile to the face of a customer. “You can make a business on Bonaire, but it takes people to make your dream a reality. That is why I’m so proud off my teammates at Fairmiles,” concludes René Knip.
In return for the opportunities Bonaire has offered, René is a full supporter of the animal rescue vehicles from the foundation Dierenlot. Nine of them are giving first aid response to animals that were hurt in an accident or otherwise. Protecting nature implies also taking care of its animals, whether it is a donkey, a parrot, a dog or a bat. This mutuality is a bond between the goals of the business and the well-being of Bonaire’s animals.
Kaya Atom 5
Phone: +599786 40 39
Facebook: Fairmiles b.v.