JACKSON, Wyo. — In March of 2020, rental car companies across America sold their inventory due to the dramatic decline in travel. But now as the country returns to the patterns of pre-pandemic life, rental car companies no longer have the necessary supply of cars to meet consumer demand.
In the month of June, a rental car is nearly impossible to come by for anyone traveling to Jackson. Of the available vehicles, visitors will have to pay a high price point in order to get around for just the week.
Across three different providers; Hertz, Budget Car Rental and Enterprise, the average price for a weekly rental is around $3,000. In comparison to prices across the U.S., the going rate for a rental car in Jackson is ten times higher than that of the average.
“Friends coming to visit us in June were quoted $2,500 for six days,” said Kristy Ladner.
Several readers* shared instances in which they had to cut a trip short or cancel entirely due to inflated prices and a lack of availability.
“Flights booked, hotels booked, and no car to get around. Bummer to cut our week-long to Jackson Hole down to three days,” said Sandy Mealey.
Another traveler, Debra Dawahare, thought to book outside of Jackson when she saw the current rental rates.
“I would have visited Jackson this summer, but there were no rental cars available there for the times I had in mind, and rental cars in Billings and Bozeman were exorbitantly expensive, even for tourist areas in high season,” said Dawahare.
Visitors like Mike Kobb, who come to Jackson annually, found prices astonishing in comparison to the normal rates.
“I tried to book a car with Hertz as usual for my planned trip this August. For 10 days it was going to be $4,000!,” said Kobb.
While other rental options in the area include companies like Turo or U-Haul, finding available vehicles is nearly impossible. With such an influx in travel, a rental car shortage is sure to present a consistent issue throughout the coming summer months.
*In an effort to gain a broader understanding of the issue at hand, Buckrail asked for some reader input.