Car rental for summer vacation: Be aware of the shortage

Car rental for summer vacation: Be aware of the shortage
Rental car parking at Lyon-Saint-Xpuri Airport (description). (Richard Moulot / Max PBP)

If you are still confident that you will find a rental car for Pentecost weekend, be patient. This is very difficult. All rental companies are selling or almost prices are going up. For good reason, the demand is very strong. Many city dwellers want to escape after these imprisonments. And most car rental companies have ordered fewer cars than usual. Struggling with the crisis, many have reduced their fleets.

Last year, after the first imprisonment, the activity of this sector fell by 60% and major brands were affected: Hertz was placed in bankruptcy proceedings in the United States, while EuropeCar reduced the number of its vehicles by a third. Rental companies have ordered fewer vehicles due to declining cash flow, lack of foreign tourists and lack of visibility. Hence the current shortage. Lasting shortage this summer. A word of advice: expect bookings for July and August.

With the crisis and health measures, at the beginning of the year, the car factories were idle. After all, in recent weeks, many production lines have been closed due to a shortage of semiconductors. Without chips or hardware, manufacturers like Renault and Stellandis (formerly PSA) had to close their bases. Conclusion: More than one million vehicles were not produced in Europe in this first quarter. Suddenly, the deadlines for getting a new car lasted longer.

Then there are rental sites between individuals. This form of collective economy is growing more and more. These locations are placed on sites such as Gatteround, the US company that bought the French site Trivi in ​​2019. Generally, the rates on these sites are 30% cheaper than traditional rental companies, but there is currently a snowball effect. As demand increases, so do prices on these sites.

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About the Author: Cory Weinberg

Cory Weinberg covers the intersection of tech and cities. That means digging into how startups and big tech companies are trying to reshape real estate, transportation, urban planning, and travel. Previously, he reported on Bay Area housing and commercial real estate for the San Francisco Business Times. He received a "best young journalist" award from the National Association of Real Estate Editors.

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