Have you ever rented a car, only to find out at the end of the booking process that the price you saw early on has jumped? Unfortunately, this is the reality travelers face when renting vehicles, especially from airport rental locations. Governments and airports have their hands firmly in the pocket of rental customers, a trend which has been driving car rental prices up in recent years.
Let’s look at an example from Avis for a rental at MCI airport in Kansas City.
The base rental charge is $48.72. But additional taxes and fees come out to $43.11, nearly equaling the actual rental cost. On this typical rental, taxes and fees end up as 88.5% of the base rental rate (what you’re paying to the company for the vehicle).
Here’s a screen shot that shows how these fees break down:
In this case, your $43.11 in taxes and fees is going to facilities, an arena fund, vehicle licensing fees, energy recovery and others.
These taxes and fees can vary greatly by airport, so if you have the option of more than one airport in a city, run a quick comparison to see if costs are higher at one airport than another. But in cities like Kansas City, you’re stuck paying the fees or finding alternative transportation. The only way to avoid these airport specific taxes and fees is – you guessed it – renting from non-airport locations.