Rental cars hard to find for Tết

Saturday, Feb 10, 2018 07:59

A traffic jam on Giang Vo Street, Ha Noi. — VNA/VNS photo Tu Anh

The rental market for cars has become boisterous in Viet Nam with the approach of the Lunar New Year (Tet) holiday.

Even as rental prices have risen two or three times their normal rate, demand remains high, leaving many customers without a car during the holiday.

Thanh Vinh, a resident in District 3, HCM City, told that his office would stop working late this Tet, so he decided to rent a car to visit his hometown in the Tay Nguyen (Central Highlands) province of Lam Dong, along with his family.

"Renting a car for Tet is an expensive affair, but passenger cars are cramped, while my family comprises five members, including children, so I want to rent a car to drive home," said Vinh.

However, Vinh said that despite approaching many dealers, he was unable to find a car that could accommodate four to seven passengers. Finally, he was able to rent a car with the support of his friend, although the price was steep at VND1.8 million per day.

Vinh is one of many trying to rent a car for Tet.

Many car agents have reportedly hiked rental prices by 50 to 60 per cent, up from VND900,000-VND1.2 million to VND1.5-VND1.7 million per day. Some agents are even asking double the rental price on normal days.

For example, the rental price of a four-seat sedan, such as Kia Morning or Hyundai Grand i10, is some VND10 to VND12 million for 10 days. Although the rental price is high, it is still not easy to rent a car for Tet.

Minh Trung, a member of Rong Viet Tour Company, which has two car rental agents in HCM City said all his cars had been rented out.

“The rental price this Tet is higher than last year because of the increase in petrol, labour force, maintenance and warranty costs,” said Trung.

There are still high-end models such as Mercedes, BMW and Civic in stock, which have a price tag of between VND1.2-VND1.8 million per day. Meanwhile, the rental prices of Vios, Innova and Camry are around VND13-VND15 million for 10 days.

Nguyen Vu, owner of a car rental agency in District 10, said most customers rent cars to travel from HCM City to Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Lam Dong, Binh Thuan, Ninh Thuan and Can Tho provinces.

Nguyen Thi Hien, owner of Hien Toyota in District 1, HCM City, said customers should check the rental cars carefully. “If they find any problems, they should immediately report them to the car owner. If customers are not careful about the defects in the car, they may lose their deposit.”

In fact, many times they fail to check for scratches or damage to the car until the car is returned to the owner. This results in disputes between both sides. In the end customers are often at the receiving end, as they have to pay tens of millions of dong as compensation for scratches.

Hien also noted that customers should check the brakes and tyres carefully, which are two important factors that determine the safety and roadworthiness of the vehicle. After receiving the vehicle, customers must also check the registration documents, compulsory insurance and circulation licence. — VNS

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