Massive rental car shortage in Orlando more than quadruples prices for travelers next week

16 days ago in "Walt Disney World Resorts"

Spring break travelers to Walt Disney World who may need a rental car could be in for an unpleasant surprise next week.

A massive shortage of rental cars in Orlando means that what little availability there is will come at a high price. A compact car, such as the Toyota Yaris, which normally rents for less than $30 a day is now more than $150 a day for next week. Some companies are charging up to $300 per day according to some industry observers.

During the COVID-19 shutdown, which saw a sudden and massive decline in renters, car rental firms scrambled to sell off vast quantities of their fleets. With Orlando now starting to see a strong rebound in visitors, car demand is outstripping supply. The shortage is being further complicated by a global lag in vehicle manufacturing which is needed to resupply the rental fleets.

With Walt Disney World's Minnie Van Service still grounded, visitors may look towards Uber as an alternative, or one of the private airport transfer services. Disney's Magical Express remains available through the end of the year for those guests staying at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel.

The best advice for anyone needing a rental car in the coming months remains to book early and lock in a reasonable price.

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Article Posted: Mar 25, 2021 / 3:02pm ET
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Waltsworld197110 hours ago

Yes and no

flynnibus8 days ago

under normal conditions.. yes. But they move cars around... and in these abnormal conditions the depletion impacts more than the airport sites

Lilofan8 days ago

The really nice part of getting a rental car arriving in the airport in Orlando is when you pick up your luggage at baggage claim/ rental agents counter you literally walk a little more than a minute to the 1st parking level of the covered garage where the rental cars are waiting. Its the easiest airport that I've been to to rent a car. But inventory now is an issue.

MinnieM1238 days ago

(I don't have any current information, but at least in the past, for Denver) -- suggest trying the city locations for all car rental companies out there. Can be a substantial savings over the airport sites, and also more vehicle availability, if booking in advance. (May have to take a taxi from the airport to the city location, but that's a minor inconvenience, if trying to save money. May also be other options such as shuttles, if rental office is located at a city hotel.)

Club Cooloholic9 days ago

So for the heck of it I looked up rental options if I went to Denver this summer. Enterprise and Alamo had NO options available. That is crazy.

Club Cooloholic10 days ago

No idea, but it seems short sighted. The Magic Express definitely gave an edge to Disney over Uni for a family and kept them captive on the property. With a rental car or having to take a taxi more folks might find themselves in Harry potter world.

Judi828195010 days ago

What is the reason, if you know, why they are eliminating the Magic Express? we've been using it over the years and we are going again in '22 and it really disappoints me that it will be gone. I am hoping that another bus company will be willing to take people to their hotels. 🙏

aliceismad10 days ago

This isn't limited to Orlando. Rental car companies sold off a lot of inventory to stave off covid losses. There have been stories from Vegas, Hawaii, etc.

DISR10 days ago

When I was there over New Years rental car outlets seemed stressed by the volume, but reluctant to ramp up staff and inventory. I think the travel industry has been so hurt by COVID they are milking the increased demand by lagging their investments...understandable, but frustrating. It also seemed like the volume of available Uber/Lyft drivers was much more limited than in times past. I wonder if that is back to a more robust and responsive level around the World.

mkt12 days ago

It's literally cheaper to buy a cheap beater car off craigslist when you arrive.

Lilofan14 days ago

Supply and demand and the car rental agencies are taking full advantage of the increased demand and very limited supply. $300 per day for an economy car and higher prices for midsize and sports cars and the WDW vacation just got a lot more expensive.

flynnibus15 days ago

I got burned by this today. Determined today we needed to make a trip to Tampa at start of April... name brand rentals were 300+/day.. across the board... if they were even advertising rates. Only dog brands like ACE were still like $115/day. Luckily a chain is honoring my corporate code... hopefully they will have a car and not strand me!

Goofnut198015 days ago

I love using Costco for renting cars, they never ask for money up front.. I have my trips for May, October and December already booked for cars. Then watch for lower rates and rebook if needed.

Club Cooloholic15 days ago

Rental prices have just gone higher in general. Old days were awesome deals