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Car Hire FAQs - Car Rental Questions & Answers

Book a vehicle

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How to hire a car in New Zealand in 3 easy steps?

Best Car Rental is a free and smart car hire booking engine: it allows you to compare vehicles from the best car rental companies in New Zealand and book your car online without any extra fee.

Make a reservation is simple as 3 easy steps:

  1. Simply select pick-up and drop-off locations and dates, your country of residence and age to see which cars are available.
  2. Compare offers from 6 leading suppliers in New Zealand and select one that meets your requirements.
  3. Confirm your reservation by providing your contact details.

Best Car Rental deals directly with the car rental company to create your reservation. You will receive an email confirmation with your booking reference and details.

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What do I need to rent a car in New Zealand?

To rent a car in New Zealand you will need a valid driver's licence, a credit card in your name and be over the age of 21. Overseas visitors must present their country's licence, international permit and sometimes a passport.

Method of payments vary depending on the car rental company. See How do I pay for car rental? for more information.

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Am I guaranteed to get the make, model, or colour of the car I want?

Unfortunately, car make/model and colour preferences are based on availability and can't be guaranteed. Please advise the company of your choice and if available they will be happy to accommodate you.

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How can I get a special car rental offer or discount?

It is our job to find the best car rental deal for you. Simply select the dates and we'll find all available car hire offers for your situation. It will be outlined with a flame icon. Click on it to find out more about it. And click again to book the car with this special deal. It cant't be any simpler!

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How can I earn Frequent Flyer points on car rental?

You may earn Frequent Flyer or other loyalty program points with our car rental providers. Simply add your airline frequent flyer details in your car rental reservation or present it at the counter when you're picking up a car. This is subject to car rental providers having an existing agreement with your preferred airline.

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How can I rent a car to go one way?

Simply select desired pick-up and drop-off locations and click search to find out if requested one-way car rental is available. One-way car rentals are subject to a one-way fee.

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How can I View/Modify/Cancel a Booking?

To view and cancel your booking, click on "My Booking" tab at the top of the page. Enter your booking number and email address to display your booking details. When reviewing your booking, you will have the option to cancel it at the bottom of the page. No fee applies for cancellation.
If you need to modify your booking, you have two options:

  • Cancel and create a new booking: everything can be done through BestCarRental. Follow the steps above to cancel your reservation. Search vehicles with your new trip details and book the vehicle you want.
  • Update your existing booking: to do so, you need to contact directly the car rental company.
http://www.avis.co.nz 0800 655 111
http://www.hertz.co.nz 0800 654 321
http://www.europcar.co.nz 0800 800 115
http://www.budget.co.nz 0800 283 438
http://www.thrifty.co.nz 0800 73 70 70
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Why should I book through Best Car Rental?

Our FREE Service Guarantee
- Easy to Compare Car Rental Prices
- Get Access to Special Coupon Offers
- No Booking Fees
- No Payment Required Until Pickup
- No Cancellation Fees

Prices, Fees and Costs

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How much will I pay for my car rental?

The total charge shown in your confirmed reservation will be the amount that you have to pay if you do not change your original reservation or select optional extras such as Optional Insurance, GPS, Baby Seats, etc.

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Why the price of car rental is higher if picking-up from the airport?

Airport car hire rates may be higher than at downtown location due to an airport mandated fees and lower at a downtown or suburban location.

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Is there a charge if I cancel my reservation or do not show up?

There is no charge if you can cancel your reservation or fail to show up.

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What is an under age surcharge?

Drivers aged 21 to 24 are restricted to the types of vehicles they can hire and are subject to a daily age surcharge.

Under age surcharge

CompanyDrivers ageUnder Age Surcharge
21-24NZ$28.75 per day
21-24Contact location
21-24NZ$27.60 per day
21-24NZ$28.75 per day
21-24NZ$17.25 per day
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What is the standard excess on the vehicle if I have an accident?

Standard insurance coverage is included in all rates. The renter is liable for damage to the vehicle and third party property and therefore will be charged the full cost of excess if such an event takes place. Excess can be reduced at an additional cost at the time of rental. Please note, admin fees and charges will be applied to Optional Insurance product.

Avis car rental rates include loss damage waiver (LDW) which reduces the financial responsibility (to NZ$3,450 for cars and NZ$4,312.50 for specialy vehicles - AWD, 4WD and luxury and 8 seater vehicles) for loss or damage to the Avis car as long as they comply with the terms of the Avis rental agreement. Excess can be reduced at an additional fee upon arrival.
When you rent a vehicle from Hertz, you are responsible for returning that vehicle to Hertz in the same condition it was in at the start of the rental, with the exception of fair wear and tear. In the event of damage, an Accident Damages Excess (ADE) will apply per incident regardless of fault. This is the amount the renter contributes towards the loss or damage. The ADE is currently NZ$3,450.00 (inc GST) for the economy manual, compact manual, compact auto, intermediate auto and full size auto car classes, and NZ$4,025.00 (inc GST) for the premium wagon, 4WD, luxury 8 seater, luxury sedan and premium 4WD car classes.
If it later transpires that the actual cost of repairs are less than the ADE, Hertz car rental will promptly credit the difference to your card. Excess can be reduced at an additional fee upon arrival.
When you rent a car from Europcar in New Zealand, Third Party Liability cover for Bodily Injury is provided in accordance with the legal requirements of the country of rental. This cover is automatically included in the rental at no extra cost. In the event of an accident, loss or damage to the vehicle or third party property, a Damage Liability Fee (DLF) will be charged for New Zealand rentals. This fee (NZ$2,750 for cars and NZ$3,000 for AWD, 4WD and Buses) is charged regardless of who is at fault or the amount of damage. If the loss or damage is ultimately less then the DLF, part of the DLF will be refunded. Excess can be reduced at an additional fee upon arrival.
When you rent a Budget car, you are financially responsible (up to NZ$3,450 for cars and NZ$4,312.50 for 4WDs) for any loss or damage to the vehicle or any loss or damage to third party property as a result of using the vehicle. Excess can be reduced at an additional fee upon arrival.
Thrifty car rentals come with an excess of NZ$3,450 - NZ$4,025 which applies in the event of any damage done to the rental vehicle including any damage to the windscreen or tyres. You may reduce your insurance excess at the counter.

To learn more about excess reduction options, check out "How can I reduce my excess (Excess Reduction)?".

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Am I required to bring the car back with a full tank of fuel?

You have three options:

  1. FILL UP BEFORE RETURNING: Return the vehicle full of fuel and you will not be charged any refuelling fees. This is by far, the cheapest option when you rent a car from Avis, Hertz, Budget, Europcar, Thrifty or Redspot.
  2. FUEL PURCHASE OPTION: Selected locations allow you to pre-purchase the tank of fuel at a discounted/competitive price, at the time of rental. You may return the vehicle with as little fuel as you feel comfortable with. This option eliminates the need to refill the tank before returning the vehicle. There is no refund for unused fuel, therefore the less fuel in the tank at return the more money you save.
  3. REFUELING SERVICE: A refuelling service is offered for your convenience when you chose to return the vehicle with less than a full tank of fuel. Car rental companies will refill the vehicle for you and the refuelling service charge will be added to the cost of the rental. This option is available at selected locations and fuel charges may vary by location. Usually, this is the most expensive refuelling option.

Options and Insurances

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How can I reduce my excess (Excess Reduction)?

To reduce your standard excess you can purchase Optional Insurance at an additional cost at the time of rental.

Optional Insurance

Company Vehicle type Standard Excess Reduced Excess Daily Fee
Cars NZ$3,450 NZ$266.30 NZ$25.74
AWD, 4WD, Bus NZ$4,312.50 NZ$345.00 NZ$28.40
Cars NZ$3,450 nil NZ$28.75
AWD, 4WD, Bus NZ$4,050 nil NZ$34.50
Cars NZ$3,450 NZ$345.00 NZ$27.60
AWD, 4WD, Bus NZ$4,312.50 NZ$345.00 NZ$27.60
Cars NZ$2,750 NZ$337.50 NZ$21.85
Audi, 4WD, Bus NZ$3,000 NZ$337.50 NZ$25.09
Cars NZ$3,450 NZ$300 NZ$25.00
AWD, 4WD, Bus NZ$4,025 NZ$500 NZ$30.00

* Please note: prices exclude any admin fees, Premium Location Surcharges.

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How can I add optional extras to my reservation?

GPS Navigation units, Baby seats, capsules and booster seats are available from Avis, Hertz, Budget, Europcar, Thrifty and Redspot.

Requests for GPS and Baby Seats can be included in your reservation. You can purchase optional insurance at the counter when you're picking up your car.

Baby Seat Types:
- Infant (Baby) Seat: 0kg - 9kg Mounted rear facing
- Child Seat: 8kg - 18kg Mounted face forward
- Booster Seat: Up to 25kg Front facing

GPS & Baby Seats Pricing

CompanyGPS/dayBaby Seat/day
NZ$11.45 (max. $109.50 per rental) NZ$14.95 (max. $74.75 per rental)
NZ$12.60 NZ$46 per rental
NZ$11.44 (max. NZ$114.38 per rental) NZ$40.25 per rental
NZ$11.45 NZ$14.95 (max. $74.75 per rental)
NZ$11.00 (max. $110.00 per month) NZ$40.25 per rental

* Please note: prices exclude any admin fees, Premium Location Surcharges.

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Is there a surcharge for additional drivers?

There are no surcharges for additional drivers who meet Avis' minimum age and licence requirements.
There are no surcharges for additional drivers who meet Hertz's minimum age and licence requirements.
If the authorised additional driver is 21-24 years old, an under-aged driver's surcharge applies.
Any additional driver will need to show their Drivers Licence at the time of rental. Every additional driver is charged an additional driver fee of NZ$3.45 per day to a maximum charge of NZ$48.30 per driver.
There are no surcharges for additional drivers who meet Budget's minimum age and licence requirements.
Any additional driver will need to show their Drivers Licence at the time of rental. All drivers must be present at the rental counter at the time of collection a rental vehicle. Every additional driver is charged an additional driver fee of NZ$11.50 per driver.

Payment

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How do I pay for car rental?

Methods of payment

Avis car rental accepts many major credit cards as credit identification at the time of rental. Note that the acceptance of Debit Cards is done so provided that the card displays the Visa or Mastercard logo, has been issued by a bank and has the customer's name and card number on the card. Debit 'Gift' cards and EFTPOS cards are not acceptable for rental.
Acceptable credit cards include: American Express, Mastercard, Visa, Diners Club and Avis.
At the time of rental, an authorisation is obtained on your credit card based on the estimated car hire charges. You must have enough credit on your card to cover all charges.
Acceptable Credit Cards: American Express, Mastercard, Diners Club, Visa, Hertz, Japanese Credit Bureau (JCB).
Visa/Mastercard debit cards are an accepted form of payment. Debit/EFT cards are not acceptable.
Credit Card holder MUST be present at time of collection.
A credit card surcharge of 1.5% will apply to qualifying rentals.
Europcar accepts all major Credit Cards including Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Diners Card across their New Zealand car hire network. Credit Card holder MUST be present at time of collection.
A 1.43% credit card fee is charged on all transactions made via Visa & Mastercard, 3.85% on American Express and 3.3% on Diners Club card. Personal and travellers' cheques are not acceptable.
Budget car rental accepts many major credit cards as credit identification at the time of rental. Note that the acceptance of Debit Cards is done so provided that the card displays the Visa or Mastercard logo, has been issued by a bank and has the customer's name and card number on the card. Debit 'Gift' cards and EFTPOS cards are not acceptable for car hire.
Acceptable credit cards include: American Express, Mastercard, Visa and Diners Club.
Thrifty car rental accepts all major Credit Cards including Visa, Mastercard and American Express.
A credit card surcharge of 1.5% will apply when paying by credit card. The 1.5% is calculated on the amount debited on your credit card. The owner of the credit card must be present at the time of collection. Cash payment is an accepted payment type, however a security bond will be required. Please ask counter staff for further information.

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