GREENSBORO, N.C. — The reason: the computer chip shortage.
“I have never seen this kind of demand in my life,” said video and audio center chief technologist, Tom Campbell.
He’s anticipating limited supplies. Without enough computer chips, manufacturers have to make choices of where the chips go.
“Are you going to put it in the set that sells for $300 or would you rather put it in a set that sells for $2,000,” said Campbell.
Expect to see higher prices and less supply of the lower end of TVs.
Also, don't expect a deal on a new car. The average price now tops $40,000. Cars use hundreds of computer chips, but folks weren't buying cars because they weren't driving as much during COVID.
Now, some automakers are even pausing production because of the shortage. How long is that going to last?
“I struggle to see things going back to what they were for another, I would say, six or nine months. Once you adapt your supply chain to something else, it takes a while to go back,” said Carolina Milanesi, president and principal analyst, creative strategist.
Speaking of the supply chain, Sony's Playstation 5 is still in such short supply from Christmas, if you find it, you'll likely pay almost double the retail price.
HOW THE SHORTAGE IS IMPACTING RENTAL CARS
“Usually when I come down, I get a car, but in DR, you can't. There were no cars to rent at all in the Dominican Republic,” said Joshua Purkett from Get Away Travel Group in Greensboro.
The rental car shortage is all over. The islands, and right here in the lower 48 too. Why?
Joshua says the pandemic hit rental car companies hard. To make up the difference, they sold cars off their lots. Now that people are heading out again… there are not enough cars to go around. To add to that, rental companies can't easily increase their supply. New cars are also in short supply as car companies deal with a semiconductor chip shortage that is put into those new cars.
“With the demand, people wanting to travel local, the demand just went out the roof and for the cars that are available, the prices are double or triple. If you used to pay $50 a day, it's easily $150 a day,” said Purkett.
What can you do? Reserve early, like several months out. Instead of just randomly picking a company, any company registers as a rewards member. Members usually get more preference.