Why Renting a Car Right Now Might Leave You Stranded
My sister went through a hellish ordeal when she flew in from Seattle to Dallas. She had reserved a car and when she showed up she was told the only way she could get a rental car was if she got a ride to another airport several miles away and then she was stuck with paying over $300 per day for an SUV. My sister then had to pay over $100 for an Uber ride and paid the astronomical prices for a rental.
I remember thinking what if I was told I had to spend an extra $1,000 just to get around during a quick 4-day trip? This girl would be riding a bicycle like I was Lance Armstrong. I would faint halfway to my destination. Unfortunately, this is happening to several traveling Americans. Why? Rental car companies had to adapt during the pandemic, and now they are in crisis mode.
How did most major rental car operators survive during the lockdown? Last year, during the peak of the pandemic rental car companies sold off over 770,000 cars in their rosters.
According to Jefferies Financial Group, that means that more than 1 of every 3 rental vehicles is no longer on the rental lot. This is why we are all seeing fewer choices when renting a vehicle and astronomical wait times when trying to pick up or drop off our vehicles.
With so many people getting out to travel rental car companies are scrambling to find enough cars to avoid having enraged travelers. What's the solution? None of us know. For now, the best thing you could do is travel where you won't need to rent a car. Hello, road trips with gas prices at an all-time high.