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Policies & Requirements

  Tips Home >> Travelling Tips >> Policies & Requirements


What is the minimum age requirement?
All Rental Companies have a minimum age requirement, usually 25.
Some will rent to those 21 years old with a surcharge, which tend to range from $5.00 to $25.00 a day. Ask about this policy if you are under 25.
Some Rental Car Companies will rent to those 18 and above in certain situations. Government or Military personnel on official business are often allowed to rent. Some companies will rent a car as an insurance replacement vehicle.
The minimum age requirement applies to the renter as well as any additional drivers.
Can I rent a car if I am less than 25 years of age?
Some Rental Companies offer rentals to those less than 25 and over 21. They will usually charge a daily surcharge ranging from $5.00 to $25.00 a day.
The minimum age policy and surcharge policy varies from company to company and can even vary between a company’s different locations.
You’ll not only want to find out who will rent to you, but also shop their surcharge fee to see if you can save some money.
Some Rental Companies that have a general policy of renting only to those over 25, have special agreements with certain corporate accounts allowing rentals to corporate employees who are under 25. In some cases, they will also wave any surcharge for those employees. However, the corporate employees are often limited to renting the car for only business purposes. You can check with the Rental Companies or your corporate travel departments to see if you are eligible for these programs.
U.S. Government employees or military personnel as young as 18 years old can often arrange to rent if they are on official business and traveling with orders.
Who else can drive the car?
Additional drivers usually need to be listed on your rental contract. Ask about the company’s additional driver policy.
Who else is allowed to drive the car?
What are the additional costs if others drive the vehicle?
What requirements must be met for additional drivers to be listed on the contract?
What types of requirements do additional drivers have to meet to be allowed to drive the rental car?
Additional drivers are often required to meet most, if not all, of the same requirements as the renter. Rental Companies may be flexible about the credit card requirements.
Additional drivers must usually also be present to present their valid driver’s license to the Rental Company’s representative.
Many Rental Companies will charge a fee to list an additional driver.
Is it a problem if I let someone else drive the car without first listing them as an additional authorized driver?
Yes, and it can be a big one. If someone else drives the car without the Rental Company’s permission, you have most likely violated the contract terms and any protection you had under that contract may be voided.
This violation could complicate or even negate claims against your personal insurance and negatively impact any coverage you receive from your credit card.
If the police stop an unauthorized driver, that driver can be detained or even arrested because they don’t have any legal right to have possession of the car.
What about all those tickets I have; will they effect me?
Yes, they can. Some states, including Florida, allow Rental Companies to do online driver’s license checks at the time of rental and some will refuse a rental based on this check.
If you have a questionable driving record, especially a D.U.I, you should ask the reservation center about this part of the rental qualification policy.
You might be able to find these policies on the company’s web page; or the reservation centers should have it available in their computers; or have another phone number available to call to check these policies.
Your reservation is useless if you don’t qualify to rent.
Do I have to return the car to the same location?
Not always, some Rental Companies allow you to drop off their car at their other locations in town, in other cities or even other states.
You’ll need to ask about each particular case to see if it is allowed.
You’ll also need to know the cost since there is usually a charge for this convenience.
Some companies have special low shuttle rates available between two popular locations.
Some companies have special low rates available if they need the car moved to another location. Often, parts of rental fleets are moved south to north for the summer and north to south for the winter to adjust for seasonal needs. So, if you do happen to be going that way you can really find some good deals.
How far can I drive the rental car?
Ask about any mileage charges and limitations.
There may be limits placed on the mileage if you take the vehicle out of state.
There may be mileage limits for certain types of vehicles especially specialty or luxury vehicles.
If you go over these limits, the charges can add up quickly.
How are rentals outside the United States different from those here?
Every country has its own rules, but here’s a list of some items you may want to consider.
You may need an international driver’s license or permit in addition to your U.S. driver’s license.
Some countries charge a fee for a permit that allows you to drive on their roads.
The rental contract may not be in English. See if they have rental contracts or at least an explanation of contract terms available in English. Also, see if they will have any English speaking counter personnel available to assist you when you arrive.
Your personal insurance or credit card coverage may not be valid or acceptable to the rental company, so you may need to purchase extra coverage.
Most rental car fleets outside the U.S. are made up of much smaller cars.
Many foreign rental fleets will have a large percentage of manual transmission automobiles.
A car with air-conditioning may be considered an upgrade in some foreign fleets.
Road signage may be in unfamiliar languages and the colors and shapes of those signs may be different than those in the U.S.
The direction of the lanes may be opposite of those in the U.S.
Road conditions may be considerably worse than those found in the U.S.
Gauges may only read in the metric system, 100 kilometers=60 miles.
Gasoline is usually considerably more expensive and is often sold by the liter, 3.78 liters=1 gallon.
Many countries have even higher taxes on rental cars than those in the U.S.
Fuel prices are often considerably higher than those found in the U.S.
Some countries have both a minimum and a maximum rental age.
How can I get an International Driver’s Permit?
The American Automobile Association’s International Driving Permit web page. This site contains information on how to get an International Driving Permit. This permit, used in conjunction with your valid U.S. driver’s license, is valid in 150 countries. Check out the site’s IDP FAQ link for further information.
What can help me prepare if I'm planning on driving in Europe?
This site contains information on traffic codes, road signs, parking and road vocabulary for these planning on driving in European Countries.


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