Families face paying double for car hire in some holiday hotspots this Easter compared to before the pandemic, says a consumer watchdog. In 2019, those heading abroad could expect a bill of £99 for a week’s rental. But now, according to Which?, they could pay more than £230.
Which? examined data from car hire broker Zest Car Rental for more than 5,000 rentals in nine popular destinations including Spain, France, and the US.
It found seven out of nine destinations had weekly increases of more than £100. Cyprus has seen the biggest rises, with the average daily rental rate more than double this year compared to 2019. A seven-day rental would set holidaymakers back £248, up 112 percent on four years ago.
Portugal increased by 99 percent and Greece by 97 percent. France’s prices were up by a quarter.
The US was by far the most expensive, with holidaymakers shelling out £537 per week on average, adding £239 to the cost of a break back in 2019. Many hire firms sold much of their fleet during Covid, then last year put up prices when they could not restock because of car component shortages.
Now firms have cars available again, prices have not dropped.
Which? deputy editor Jo Rhodes blamed high demand combined with a shortage of rental vehicles.
She said: “Shop around and book in advance to lock in the most competitive rates, especially during peak periods. Paying in advance, if you can, often works out cheaper overall and helps to secure your booking.”