Car rental prices in Europe and Spain are falling after a long period of increases

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rental car prices

With the warmer weather just around the corner, planning the summer holidays comes into play again for many. When choosing your holiday, the costs of car rental are also important. Whether you travel by ferry, plane or train, a rental car on location can come in handy.

And it is precisely those prices that have risen considerably in recent years and have become increasingly important when considering your holiday, something that many people only realise after booking the accommodation, and then it is already too late. So, what do you pay for a small rental car per day? And what are the trends within Europe? The good news: compared to 2 years ago, there has been an average decrease of 22%, if we look over a longer period we still see an increase of almost 50%.

Car rental prices in Europe: key findings

Every year, FerryGoGo investigates the costs of a rental car at popular port cities and islands. This research is carried out in collaboration with EasyTerra. The price data examined by FerryGoGo shows, among other things, that:

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  • Compared to 2022, prices have now fallen by 22% across Europe, an average difference of €24 per day.
  • In 2022, renting a small car still cost an average of €111 in the cities surveyed, in 2024 it was €87 per day; in 2019 this was still €58.
  • In Spain, prices fell on average by almost €40 per day, which is 39% compared to 2022, in France by 17% and the UK by 18%.
  • Where Ireland previously saw the fastest rise in prices, they are now seeing the fastest decline. On average, prices for a small rental car in Ireland fell by 60% compared to 2 years ago, and in Dublin even by 64%. That saves more than €100 per day. Compared to 5 years ago, there is still an increase of 18%
  • The big difference between Norway and Sweden is also striking: where you spend €137 per day in Norway, you spend around €77 per day in Sweden.
  • Are you going by ferry? Then there is a chance that it is worth leaving the car at home: taking your own car on board a ferry can also be quite expensive, and if you only need a car for a few days, this can make a significant difference.
  • The most you will pay for a small rental car in Norway this summer is €138: one of the few countries where prices have risen (+22%). Prices also rose in Germany compared to 2 years ago, but it is now cheaper than 5 years ago.
  • In Amsterdam and Rotterdam, prices fell by 33.5% and 26.8% respectively. This allows you to rent a rental car for a day for around €80.
  • In the other countries and locations examined, the average prices are often between €60 and €100. This concerns a small rental car per day in high season. Norway is therefore the negative outlier. Here it is probably best to take your camper or car on the ferry.

Prices for rental cars in Spain

average rental car prices spain

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 If you rent a car for several days, this will reduce the price. The study looked at the average price per day of a (small) rental car in the high season (June, July and August) over recent years. The cities included in the research are often popular holiday destinations, islands and/or port cities, to which there are also crossings.

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