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Nationwide rental car shortage revs up during Strugis

Published: Aug. 6, 2021 at 7:01 PM CDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) -You spent hours on a plane, anticipating the arrival to your destination, only to realize that once you touch down there are no cars to rent and if there are, the price is a hefty one. You may think that only happens at far away tourist locations, but it’s a problem right here in Black Hills.

Rental cars are sold out across the country and Rapid City is not immune, the manager of Black Hills Car Rentals, Jon Torgerson says the supply cant meet the demand.

“We’ve been sold out more days and quicker for like the rally it’s probably been about 60 days that we’ve been sold out for, from the start of the rally and through out the rally, normally we will always have a car or two for people who break down or can’t find one at the airport, but this year we don’t have that available,” said Torgerson.

Torgerson adds his phone is ringing off the hook, “we’re working more hours, I mean we are coming in on our days off to make sure we have the cars ready and cleaned off, ready to go for what we’ve committed to.”

And the source of the problem has to do with how scarce cars are, “it’s not only here but nationwide, the problem of shortage of rental cars, and there is a shortage of cars also for new dealers and for used car dealers,” Torgerson said.

Not enough cars doesn’t just impact one industry but many, Torgerson reflects on the state of his used car lot, “besides the car rental we have the used car lot, we will normally carry about 60 cars on the lot, and I think about right now we have about 16.”

There are options if you find yourself in a situation where you are unable to secure a rental, and most of those options are as simple as a quick scroll through your phone. Car and ride shares are becoming popular alternatives for people traveling who cant find a ride, and they available here in the Black Hills.

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