Back in business after remaining closed for the first three days of Eid al-Fitr, garages in the Industrial Area are set for some hectic activity in the coming days.
The workload, according to the operators of some of these garages and workshops, has already increased by around 20% as compared to the period before the holidays.
The increase in work orders is primarily due to the arrival of vehicles that suffered minor damage during the holidays. There are also some pending works, it is learnt.
A number of garages in the Industrial Area depend on work orders that involve vehicle repairs covered by insurance as these provide a stable income, it has been found.
Some are also known to send representatives to the offices of insurance companies to attract potential customers with promises of prompt and quality service.
“A majority of vehicles we deal with have body repair and paint issues caused by accidents and are referred to us by insurance companies,” said an Asian garage manager, indicating that such cases account for a bulk of the garage’s income.
Several other garage administrators and operators echoed this view, pointing out that they are keen to attract as many customers with insurance-covered repairs as possible and win the confidence and satisfaction of such clients.
“It is a secure income and something that can guarantee a good flow of business, which is required to cope with the high operational costs, including rent, water and electricity charges and staff salary, among other things. At the same time, we have to provide competitive service in terms of delivery time, lower charges and quality so as to ensure that insurance companies as well as customers are satisfied. We need to do so to continue being a player in the market,” said Mohamed, who has being running a garage in the Industrial Area for years.
However, not all insurance companies allow their clients to choose the workshops where they can get their damaged vehicles repaired as they deal with only a specific set of garages, it is understood.
Mohamed pointed out that the volume of work has more than doubled in the last few years and there is still room for more businesses in this area in Doha. However, he added, a major obstacle was finding a suitable garage space at a moderate rate.
According to the operators of most garages there, the main reason behind the ever-increasing charges was the high rents as well as a rise in the number of vehicles.
Meanwhile, shops selling spare parts, too, have witnessed a rise in sales as many customers prefer to get parts from them instead of the brand’s main dealer.
“When available, the parts we offer cost less than what they do at the dealer and some of them are almost of the same quality as the original ones. However, some spare parts are not available for some brands. Sometimes, a customer has to bring a sample of the old part that has to be replaced to get a similar part at a reasonable price,” said Shaheen, an expatriate spare parts salesperson.
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