Car Hire: Beat the Airline Prices

Monday, May 23, 2011

CHESTER, England, May 24, 2011 -

- Car Hire Can Cost Up to 450* Per Cent More Via an Airline
Than the Best Buys Via Price Comparison Site

- Reveals Shopping Around Can Save
Customers Over GBP2,000***

Holidaymakers looking to hire a car this summer could save
themselves up to 82* per cent if they shop around instead of booking through
their airline, according to travel comparison site,
( The investigation has
revealed that in some cases airline prices can be up to GBP2,000** more
expensive if renting a people carrier for two weeks in the school holidays
this summer. And it is not just larger cars - you can pay up to GBP567*** (or
190 per cent) more if you book with airlines 'suggested suppliers' for an
economy car.

The research was conducted by looking at
the popular travel dates of the forthcoming half term period and the main
summer holidays ( It looked
at one and two week rentals booked via five airline websites at eight major
holiday airports in Europe, compared to prices sourced through the price comparison service. The aim was to see if those
airlines that offer some of the most competitive airfares in Europe to
British travellers, also offered the most competitive car hire pricing.

After comparing 480 price points, the research found families
and groups of friends could be most affected as people carriers often show
the biggest disparities. To hire one for two weeks in Majorca would cost
GBP626 if consumers shopped around for the best deal, but if booked via
easyJet's preferred supplier, Europcar, the cost for the same type of car
over the same period of time would cost a whopping GBP2,727 - a huge increase
of 335 per cent.

To hire a people carrier in Malaga this May could cost just
GBP96. However, if booked via Monarch, the cost is GBP525 - an increase of
447 per cent. It is the same story with economy cars - booking one in Faro
for two weeks in July via would cost GBP298, but if
booked instead with easyJet's preferred supplier, the cost would be GBP866 -
an increase of 190 per cent.

We also found price differences on a number of other airlines,
Ryanair were up to 163 per cent more expensive on car hire in Faro, British
Airways were up to 152 per cent more expensive in Alicante and bmibaby up to
233 per cent more for a rental in Alicante.

Whilst many airlines appear to suggest that they are offering
passengers a preferential deal on their car hire, the research has revealed
that you are actually getting anything but that, due to the fact that most
airlines only work with one car supplier. Ryanair does in fact offer cheaper
prices for it's rentals with Hertz than on the direct booking site of the
major car hire company. However, in 480 examples checked, the airlines'
prices were found to be cheaper than on only seven
occasions, which compares over 200 companies from 21 suppliers, with the aim
of finding the best prices available to car hire customers.

Consumers should also be aware that while some airlines offer
a 'lowest price guarantee', you will find that this simply guarantees to be
cheaper than booking through their preferred supplier directly, and does not
take into account the entire market. Additional services such as car hire can
be big money-spinners for airlines. easyJet noted in its results last week
that it is looking to renegotiate its current car hire contract, which may
result in better prices being offered to its customers.

Travel expert Bob Atkinson from said: "Don't assume that the cheapest
company for flights or a holiday will also give the best price on car hire.
Airlines and tour operators are keen to maximise on holiday extras and the
car rental market is an easy win as they make it so easy for you to book
through them."

"It is so important to shop around for the best vehicle rental
price using comparison services. These are designed to show a large range of
providers and make finding the best deal far easier.

"Brits have got into the habit of seeking out a great price
when looking for the best value flights or holidays and they should do the
same for car hire, rather than just take the simple route of booking with
their airline. This can save hundreds - or in some cases thousands - of
pounds, money which would easily go towards funding an additional holiday
later in the year or subsidising your spending money whilst away."

Example price differences for booking with your airline VS using price
comparison at's top eight European destinations - One
Week, May 2011

    Destination Car Type Airline/ Airline   travelsupermarket  Diff GBP  Diff
                         Tour     Price     .com price                     %

    Majorca     People   easyJet  GBP679.57  GBP134.90         GBP544.67 404%

    Faro        Economy  British  GBP157.00  GBP80.49          GBP76.51  95%

    Malaga      People   Monarch  GBP525.07  GBP96.00          GBP429.07 447%

    Alicante    People   bmibaby  GBP319.32  GBP96.00          GBP223.32 233%

    Nice        People   Ryanair  GBP364.99  GBP251.89         GBP113.10 45%

Prices sourced by

Example price differences for booking with your airline VS using price
comparison at's top eight European destinations - Two
Weeks, July 2011

    Destination Car Type Airline/ Airline   travelsupermarket  Diff GBP  Diff
                         Tour     Price     .com price                    %

    Majorca     People   easyJet  GBP          GBP626.94      GBP        335%
                Carrier           2,727.28                    2100.34

    Faro        Mini     Ryanair  GBP657.87    GBP248.86      GBP409.01  163%

    Alicante    Small    British  GBP897.00    GBP356.04      GBP540.96  152%
                family   Airways

    Faro        People   easyJet  GBP2,657.52  GBP1,024.80    GBP        159%
                Carrier                                       1,632.72

    Nice        People   bmibaby  GBP1,172.26  GBP612.57      GBP559.69   91%

Prices sourced by

Top tips for car hire:

- Always shop around when booking car hire, don't just take the price
from your airline or other travel provider and use a price comparison engine
to check out all options.

- Generally it is best to book as early as possible for the best deals,
especially on key travel dates. Prices tend to go up towards the rental date
and car groups can sell out making your first choice unavailable. Price can
be quite volatile at times so if you see a good price, book it immediately.

- Consider all price groups of cars as you can sometimes get bigger cars
at lower or equivalent rental costs to smaller cars, especially on peak

- Lesser known car hire companies often provide excellent value for money
on holiday rentals in popular resorts - these are only found in price
comparison engines alongside the major brands.

- Check you are comparing like for like - our service provides a quick
easy reference to indicate what is included in the cost.

- Remember, car seats, additional drivers and fuel are always added
items, not quoted in the basic cost as they are either optional or vary by
company and location.

- You can also cut costs by being aware of excess reduction. On arrival
at your pick up point, the car hire companies will point out the excess you
pay in case of any accident or damage and then try and sell you a daily cover
to reduce the excess to nil. NEVER take this from the car hire company,
protect yourself ahead of travelling by taking out Car Hire Excess Insurance
- this can save up to 75% on the charges made by the rental companies

- Cut your costs further by taking your own car seats for infants with
you, which is usually cheaper to take as checked luggage, than renting in a
resort, plus you are guaranteed to have your seat with you for your little

Searches made 16 May 2011 for 8 days rental commencing 28 May and 15 days
commencing 30 July

Prices sourced from Airline/Tour Op website, car hire supplier direct
site and price comparison site

* Malaga, 1 week, 28 May, people carrier, 5-7 seats with Monarch, with
Sixt, price = GBP525.07. via Netflights = GBP96.00. A
saving of 82 per cent, a difference of 450 per cent

** Majorca, 2 weeks, 30 July, people carrier 5-7 seats with easyJet with
europecar = GBP2727.28. via Argus = GBP626.94 a
difference of GBP2100.34.

*** Faro, 2 weeks, 30 July, economy car with easyJet with Europcar
GBP866.66 vs. GBP298.70 with Argus Rentacar.

About is an online comparison service where
customers can find the best value travel options for their needs and purchase
over the internet. The website compares flights, car hire, hotels, cruise,
package holidays plus dynamic packaging by searching hundreds of travel
websites. The information supplied is unbiased and is designed to save the
customer time and money.

The site thrives on offering its users accurate real time availability by
taking information directly from suppliers such as Opodo, British Airways,
Thomas Cook, First Choice, Radisson, Sol Melia, easyCar, Auto-Europe and many
more, ensuring users are presented the best possible price at all times. It

- Over 650 scheduled, low cost and charter airlines from 39 individual

- Over 200,000 individual hotels from over 42 individual hotel suppliers

- Over 200 individual car hire providers from over 21 suppliers

- 1,000s of individual package holidays from over 34 suppliers

Additionally, also compares prices on travel
insurance and on airport car parking. is part of the Group PLC. is a website where consumers can compare
personal finance products, save money and apply online. The website has
several service areas including personal loans, credit cards, mortgages,
current accounts, savings accounts, motor insurance, home insurance, travel
insurance, health insurance, mobile phones, broadband and shopping. won 'Best Meta Search/Price Comparison Website' and
'Online Travel Brand of the Year' at the Travolution Awards 2009.

    For further press information contact:

    Emma Morris

    Chris Bull, Lisa Sharland
    3 Monkeys Communications


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