Bozeman Rental Cars: The Vacation Hunger Games. $500/Day?
I've seen people freaking out online about the price of a rental car in Bozeman but didn't do any research myself...until now. Sweet Jesus. They're not kidding. Rental cars (if you can even find one in June, July or August are offensively expensive.
Before I get too deep in the weeds about how ludicrous this is (even though it's the main effect of supply and demand), here's what I did:
A simple search on several national car rental websites for pick-up on Wednesday, June 9th and drop-off on Sunday, June 13th, 2021. Yeah. God forbid you need a big vehicle for a large group.
- HERTZ - "Manager's Special" was an undisclosed model of 2 doors and 4 seats: $339.99 / Day
- HERTZ - "Chevrolet Suburban or similar": $649.99 / Day
- HERTZ - "Cadillac Escalade or similar": $675.00 / Day
- ENTERPRISE (Bozeman) - No availability for our search dates
- So we adjusted our search for Monday, July 19th - Saturday, July 24th:
- "SURPRISE AGENCY" via KAYAK - Mazda CX-5 or similar: $458.75 / Day
- "SURPRISE AGENCY" via KAYAK - Kia Rio or similar: $395.85 / Day
- "SURPRISE AGENCY" via KAYAK - Toyota Corolla or similar - $400.54 / Day
- BUDGET - Volkswagen Jetta or similar - $444.00 / Day
- AVIS - Mid-size SUV - $480.00 / Day
We've seen the online pleas for guidance or other options. Some 'helpful' commenters suggested U-Hauls.
Not great advice in our opinion for myriad reasons but for the sake of arguement...I did check: Renting a U-Haul pickup truck (smallest available) for 24 hours with 400 miles of allotted mileage for that time period = $166.00
According to the official U-Haul website: "Yes, we do have special rates for customers who can pick up and return at the same location and need multiple days or weeks and/or need to cover hundreds of miles."