How old do you have to be to rent a car?

Renting a car for a short period of time is a great source of freedom, especially for young people. It allows them access to a car, without the financial investment of buying their own vehicle.As you might guess though, renting a car comes with certain rules and regulations that drivers should be aware of.Among these is the minimum age requirement for UK drivers to hire a car.

In this blog, we’ll be giving you all the information you need to know to help you rent a car as a young adult.

Hiring a car as a young driver

Anyone between the ages of 23 and 25 is considered a young driver for the purposes of car rental. If you fall into this range, there are some additional conditions you should be aware of. These are on top of the usual documents required for a car rental, which we’ll detail later. The first is that any young driver has proof of ID. This can be any form of photo identification that contains sufficient information. Although the best options are a passport, drivers’ licence, or national ID card.

Drivers under 25 looking to hire a car will also be subject to a young driver surcharge. This is a daily fee charged on top of the regular rental price.The surcharge is also added regardless of whether you’re the main driver of the car or an additional one.

To ensure they’re covered, some car hire companies will requireyoung drivers take out a comprehensive insurance policy. Requirements like this will be at the discretion of the rental company. Croxdaleallows car renters aged 23-24one minor conviction (the equivalent of three licence points) within the last 3 years.

Types of hire car

Many rental car providers will impose restrictions on the type of vehicle that young drivers can hire.This typically concerns luxury vehicles, sports cars, and large vehicles with off-road capabilities. The reasoning behind this is largely due to accident risk associated with younger drivers.

These limitationsare also supported by UK law. Regulations state that drivers aged 17-21 cannot drive cars with an engine capacity that exceeds 1.2 litres. For drivers aged 22-25, this limit is applied to cars with a capacity of more than 1.6 litres.

Minimum age to rent a car

Every country has different regulations surrounding car hiring, which includes the minimum age people can hire a car. For instance, in countries such as America, Greece, Ireland, and Australia, the minimum age requirement is 21. Whereas other European countries like Italy, Germany, and Sweden allow 18-year-olds and up to hire cars.

This limit can also be set by rental car suppliers depending on their policy preference and often differs to the driving age. Some rental companies will also require the individual has held a full driving licence for at least a year.

In the UK, the minimum age for someone to be able to hire a car is 23. Compared to the countries mentioned above, this puts us on the higher end of the limit. Especially when you consider that UK drivers can drive their own car from 17. However, there will be variations from lender to lender. You can read our terms & conditions here.

Documents needed for car hire in the UK

No matter how old you are, you need to provide evidence of certain things in the process of obtaining a hire car. These are standard requirements no matter the contract too. For instance,we’ll still need them if you wish to useourflexi car hire service.

DVLA code

As a UK licence holder, your DVLA code can be used to examine driving history. Car hire companies need to do this to ensure they are lending to a reputable individual. Think of it as banks checking credit history before someone takes out a loan. The DVLA code reveals any past instances of penalty points, endorsements, and disqualifications.

An individual’s DVLA code can be used to view driving licence information on the GOV.UK website.However, once the code has been retrieved, it only remains valid for 21 days. As a result, it’s best to have a clear idea of what and when you’ll be renting before getting your code. At Croxdale, we check drivers’ licence information within three days of their rental to ensure it’s up to date.

Driving licence

If there was any doubt, you need a full and valid driving licence to hire a car. This does not have to be a UK driving licence. Any licence printed in English that fits the criteria will suffice. For instance, those issued in America, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand can be used to hire a car in the UK.If you don’t have a licence printed in English, you can acquire an International Driving Permit (IDP) that will perform the same function.

As mentioned earlier, providers will have differing policies in relation to how long a driver has had their full licence. Many rental companies will also outline a maximum number of fixed penalties that drivers can have while applying. A licence that exceeds thisfigurewill prevent the person from hiring a car.

Proof of address

Hiring a car requires you bring some form of documentation that details the address you’re currently living at. For example, a utility bill or bank statement. Regardless of the document type, it must be no older than three months to serve as verification of address.

In the event you’re asked for a credit card statement as well, it’slikely you’ll be required to bring in the card used in the rental transaction.This will of course be skipped if you’re a young driver who doesn’t have a credit card.

International Driving Permit

As mentioned earlier, possession of an IDP is necessary for those with non-EU driving licences to rent a car in the UK. Although this excludes America, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, and Australia. An IDP is valid for 12 months, so it’s recommended that renters apply for one close to the time they want to travel.

Do I need to put down a deposit on a hire car?

Alongside the total cost of hiring the car for a certain period of time, drivers must also pay a deposit upfront. This occurs during the booking process and will be refunded once the car is returned to the rental company. Though this is only on the condition the vehicle is returned undamaged.

The nature of a deposit will vary between lenders, both in terms of theamount of moneyandaccepted payment methods.However, most rental companies only accept payment with credit or debit cards.Croxdale accepts Visa, Visa Debit, MasterCard, and Amex.

Rent a car Durham UK

As members of the British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA), the CroxdaleGroup are trusted providers of new and used cars for hire. We offer a range of services designed to support renters every step of the way. This includes providing recommendations for young or first-time renters, as well as reliable aftercare.Get in touch today and one our team members will be happy to answer any questions you have.