BOSTON (AP) Car rental companies are bracing for more traffic in the wake of President Donald Trump’s executive order banning travel to the U.S. from seven majority Muslim countries, raising hopes of an increase in the market.
The new restrictions are expected to have a significant impact on car rental companies and drive up rents, although a surge in new car rentals may not happen until later this year.
“We’re seeing the impact now, but it will be a gradual one,” said David Housley, the executive vice president of the Bay Area Rental Association, which represents more than 600 rental companies.
“We’re definitely expecting some growth.”
Car rental companies in the Bay area are already seeing an uptick in customers from the affected countries, which include Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain and the United Kingdom.
Car rental prices have jumped more than 2 percent for the past week.
The average price in Boston is $1,500, up from $826 the previous week.
Car rental prices are also rising in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Dallas, Houston and Portland.
“I think that the more people who want to go, the more that there will be demand,” said Bill Drexler, a spokesman for the rental industry group American Rental Car Rentals.
“It’s going to be interesting to see how that plays out.”
In addition to the travel ban, Trump is seeking to roll back a series of environmental regulations that the U,S.
Chamber of Commerce says he’s using to make business more difficult.
The president has threatened to withdraw federal funding for the Clean Power Plan, the Obama administration’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions from power plants.
Trump also is considering a sweeping rollback of the Affordable Care Act.
It would allow states to decide whether to expand Medicaid, expand insurance coverage for people with pre-existing conditions or expand the use of the individual mandate, which requires people to buy health insurance or pay a penalty.
The Trump administration has also indicated it is considering rewriting the tax code to allow corporations to write off taxes paid to foreign governments.