Car Hire in the UK: What to Know Before Your Trip?

Choosing a means of transportation is one of the most important issues when planning your trip to the UK. You have a wide range of options: plane, train, bus, or car. The car is the most versatile way to travel on this list. Firstly, it’s cheap, secondly, the car allows you to get to hard-to-reach places, and thirdly, you can hire a car anywhere in the country if you don’t have your own.

Moreover, car hiring in the UK can bring you more emotions and explore nice and non-touristic places. New emotions will bring you fresh ideas for the future and a huge amount of inspiration. Although, even if you have a car, will it withstand the journey? So, a hire car is the best choice for your trip.

However, if you are hiring a car for the first time, you need to know a few major things. How to start searching for a car? When to book? Which company to choose? What are the major requirements? Keep reading and you will find the answers to all your questions!

Which car to hire?

So, you have decided to travel around the United Kingdom in a hire car. First, you need to decide on the vehicle class. If you’re on a family trip with 1-2 kids or a road adventure with friends, consider at least a full-size car, minivan, or even a passenger van.

The longer the trip, the more comfortable the car should be. You can also take a look into the 7-seater car hire for big companies. Be sure that you follow up all requirements of car hire. It can include specific insurance issues, fee payment etc.

Compact or economy cars are suitable for couples or solo travelers. In addition, such cars can save you a lot. If your trip involves driving on unpaved roads, we recommend picking up a 4WD SUV.

How to choose the right car hire company?

Would you like to pick up a hire car from Keddy by Europcar Heathrow? If yes, you can use the car rental service in Or maybe you want to benefit from Enterprise as a provider? The choice is really difficult, as about 20+ suppliers operate at London’s Heathrow Airport alone.

They include both large international companies such as Hertz, Avis, Sixt, Budget, Alamo, Thrifty, National, and small regional agencies. If we talk about the United Kingdom as a whole, there are many more companies, you need just to check the list in Google. Car renting has so many advantages for your future trip and we will talk today about the main one in this article. Let us share our personal tips based on our experience.

When choosing a company, you need to find out if they have offices at the airport and other points of your destination, or if they allow you to return the car to another location. Also, check out in advance if the opening hours of the selected provider suit you.

This is especially important in case you are picking up a car at the airport and your flight arrives late at night. It’s quite easy to rent a car with the help of rental applications. It will save your time, help you to pick up a suitable car in your situation and provide comfort and save trip for you and your family or friends.

What are the major car hire requirements?

All companies anywhere in the United Kingdom have their own requirements for the driver and a list of required documents. Let’s focus on the most common ones.

  • According to most car hire vendors, the driver must be at least 21 years old. Plus, if you’re under 25, you will have to pay the daily Young Driver’s Fee on top of the base price. Also, keep in mind that some vehicle categories such as luxury cars, passenger vans, and SUVs may not be available to underage drivers.
  • You must provide a valid driver’s license. If it’s not in English, prepare an international driving permit (IDP) as well. Be prepared that you wouldn`t be able to use car-rental services without proper driving license.
  • Companies require a credit card with the minimum balance for car hire. It includes the hire price plus the deposit amount, which is at least £200. Some providers allow debit cards, but you need to clarify this in advance.
  • International renters must have a passport and proof of return travel and residency information while in the United Kingdom.
  • A printed confirmation voucher is required if you hire a car in advance.

How much does it cost to hire a car?


An important factor in choosing a car and a rental company is the price and cost structure. In addition to the basic price for the selected car, the providers supplement it with a multitude of mandatory payments, which in the end practically double the hire price. The most common options are:

  • additional driver
  • child seat
  • GPS navigator
  • one-way car hire
  • prepaid fuel
  • full insurance

Therefore, avoid options that you don’t need and you will thereby reduce the final price. The average price for cars of different categories is:

  • £15-30 per day for a mini, compact, or economy car
  • £30-60 per day for a mid-size or standard car
  • £15-30 per day for an SUV
  • £30-80 per day for 7-9 seater minivan
  • £60-120 per day for a full-size car
  • £70-150 per day for a premium or luxury car
  • from £110 per day for a convertible

Please note that the price depends on such things as location, company, current demand for car hire and many other things. However, the main rule of a cheap price is early booking and effective preparation to avoid all sorts of delays. The optimal period is 2-4 weeks before the trip. Hopefully, you will enjoy your future trip.