Would You Spend $1,000 a Day to Rent a Car?
No, we're not talking Ferraris, Lamborghinis or Buggattis — we're talking convertables and Camry's. Right now, Hawaii has seen a surge in visitors and with that a high demand for rental cars.
In Honolulu, a van can cost up to $500 a day while a convertable can cost $1,000, and that's if you can get one. When we looked at rental car options on Expedia for the next five days there were none available from the airports in Honolulu, Hilo, Kona and Maui. Kauai is slightly different because they are not participating in the Safe Travels program, but soon will be again.
If you can get a coveted car rental, expect to pay a pretty penny. In Maui, a Toyato Camry was renting for $722 a day. Let's quickly think about some things you can buy for $722 shall we?
That's 241 cups of coffee at $2.99 each; 57 poke bowls at $12.49 each; and 331 Spam musubis at $2.18 each!
Prior to the car rental shortage, you could get rates as low as $55 a day, depending on the time of year. So, why all of a sudden are rental car prices so high? During the pandemic, the decline in visitors led to a surplus of cars and the price to park them was costly. Lots of cars were shipped back to the mainland to conserve costs and now, there's not enough inventory to go around.
We don't expect the surge pricing to last forever, but in the meantime there are two options you can check out if you can't find (or afford) a rental car in Hawaii right now. These are Turo and Drive Hui. Turo is like Airbnb, but for cars and Drive Hui is an Oahu-based car share program that allows you to pick up cars at set locations and rent them by the hour. Oh, and when you choose Drive Hui you get a FREE Shaka Guide driving tour!
Another tip to help you save on a rental car? BOOK EARLY. We cannot emphasize this enough. If you wait until the last minute not only do you run the risk of paying a fortune, you might not even get a car.
Let us know on Facebook and Instagram — would you pay $1,000 a day to rent a car in Hawaii?