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Car rentals 15.4% cheaper this year, yet up 60% over 5 years.

After numerous years of consistent growth, this year ushers in a more cost-effective option for car rentals. The prices of small rental cars at various locations have decreased 15.4% this year. Over a span of five years, the overall increase remains substantial, with an average rise of 60.7%.

When it comes to planning and arranging your holiday, the local car rental price has become an increasingly pivotal factor, particularly due to the significant cost escalations witnessed in recent years.

In 2023, we are finally witnessing a decline in prices, as unveiled by the research conducted by FerryGoGo. While the mean cost of renting a small car averaged around €108 per day in 2022, in 2023, the prices have subsided to an average of approximately €91.

Let's delve into the specifics. What exactly are you paying for when renting a small car for a day? And how much more are you shelling out for a rental car compared to about five years ago?

The study examined the average daily price of a (small) rental car during the peak season (June, July, and August) over the past five years.[1]the data was obtained for car rental platform

Data meticulously analysed by FerryGoGo underscores the following salient points:

  • The average car rental prices have dropped by 15.4% compared to 2022.
  • Nevertheless, over the past five years (2019 – 2023), car rental prices have still seen an average increase of 60.7%.
  • Harking back to 2019, you would have been charged around €57 for a day's rental. While this figure surged to a maximum of €108 in 2022, it has now retreated to €91.50 in 2023.
  • In destinations like Spain, rental prices have experienced a significant plunge, dropping nearly 32%, from €101 to €69.
  • France has witnessed a decrease of approximately 11% compared to 2022.
  • In the UK, there's an almost 9% decrease compared to 2022, amounting to around €10 per day. However, even when juxtaposed with the rates of five years ago, the rise still stands at a notable 102%.
  • This summer, a small rental car would cost you approximately €95 in the scrutinised French cities, €120 in Norway, €69 in Spain, and €98 in the UK.
  • Interestingly, in Norway, the price has registered a 6.5% increase, culminating at €120 for a day's rental.
  • In Dublin, Ireland, prices have experienced a dramatic 44% plummet, plummeting from a substantial €184 in 2022 to a more reasonable €103 this year.
  • In the Netherlands, the spotlight was cast upon Amsterdam and Rotterdam, witnessing price reductions of 25% and 29%, respectively, averaging around €82.
  • Across other scrutinised countries and locations, average prices predominantly range between €70 and €100 for a small rental car per day during the peak season.
  • Remember, if you opt for a car rental spanning multiple days, the overall price tends to decrease.

Car rental prices in Europe in EUR

Car rental prices in Europe in GBP

The cities encompassed in this research primarily constitute popular holiday destinations, islands, and/or port cities accessible by ferry. Equipped with insights into car rental prices at these locations, holidaymakers can weigh the pros and cons of bringing their own vehicle versus opting for on-site rental services.

For passengers utilising ferry services, having a grasp of price dynamics can significantly inform the decision-making process between renting a car or transporting their own. Car transport via ferry can markedly elevate the cost of the voyage.

Last year's research demonstrated a price surge of 132% over five years. Hence, moderating the price upswing to a 'mere' 60.7% is a gratifying development for those availing of rental services.

For a comprehensive view of all prices and data, please refer to the accompanying documents (prices in EUR - prices in GBP.)

1the data was obtained for car rental platform

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JW van Tilburg
JW van Tilburg

JW, one of the co-founders of FerryGoGo, has a passion for food, drink, and travel. He loves exploring data and the history of the many destinations featured on FerryGoGo, and he's always curious about the population of each place.

  1. Great analysis, do you also have like numbers of how this changed last ten years or so? Even though the prices went down for 15: the price increase for the last 10 years must be insanely high.

    • @Simone
      The price went up big time the last few years. (except last year) We will try to add the prices for the last 10 years in our research we do about this next year. Thanks for the question!

  2. Great info, I never rent a car due to my knowledge of the prices and obviously fuel on top of that. Is insurance included in a rental?

    • Hi Mateo,

      Thank you for your response! Renting at the location can be more cost-effective than bringing your own car on board, especially on a short trip. As for rental cars, insurance is typically included in most cases, and it’s also usually possible to upgrade the insurance.

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