Microchip shortage could hike up cost of your next vacation

SPOKANE, Wash. — As if the pandemic hasn’t impacted us enough, it’s now slowed down production of microchips.

Microchips are in almost everything we use on a daily basis; electronics, appliances and cars.

“It’s frustrating,” Becker Buick manager Sergei Kvokov said. “Not only for the dealers and the customers but as a whole industry.”

A shortage of chips means a shortage of cars at dealerships and rental agencies.

So, if you need a car for your next vacation, it could cost you twice as much as it did before the pandemic.

“It did take a lot of shopping around,” Luis Hernandez told us at the Spokane International Airport Tuesday. “Definitely noticed the rates were pretty high in comparison to previous trips.”

According to Kelley Blue Book, you could pay around $500 per day for a rental car in vacation hotspots like Hawaii.

It was even harder for Hernandez to find a rental car than his plane ticket to Spokane.

“Absolutely,” Hernandez said. “I think I almost spent two weeks just finding a car.”

The same goes for buying a car right now. One you may have your eye on is selling quicker and for more money.

One type of vehicle is also hardest to come by right now: trucks.

“Trucks are very popular in this region anyway, but with the technology in the trucks now-a-days, with the surround vision and all the safety features that come with these vehicles, they all need microchips,” Kvokov said.

On the flip side, there may not be a better time to sell your car than right now, because those microchips are driving up its value.

“Used car prices are very high, because of that exactly low inventory on new vehicles,” Kvokov said. “It’s gonna affect the used vehicle prices.”