Skip to main content

New York City Rental Car

Getting Around New York City

Renting a car in New York can be confusing and it pays to do your homework before deciding on a rental car company. Finding the lowest daily rates is important but you need to watch out for unexpected costs that can change the price dramatically. Things like mileage caps, insurance and drop off fees can double or quad triple the advertised rate.

New York City has a great public transportation system of buses, taxis and a subway system, that happend to be largest in the world by track mileage and the largest by number of stations. Before you rent a car in the city, ask yourself if you really need a rental car and secondly if you can afford the outragious New York city parking fees.

If the answer is YES, you need a rental car, here are the things you should know and things that will affect the price you will pay.

Size and type of car: Rent cars that make sense to you. Rental car prices vary greatly based on the size and type of car you plan to rent. Example of rental car size and type are compact, midsize, luxury, and mini-van.
Drop-off charges: Expect to pay a Drop-off charge if you return the car to a different location.
Taxes: Inquire about state, city, airport; or other government-mandated charges that can make up 20% to 40% of the total bill
Location: Remember rates may vary within the city and at the airport for the same car rental company.
Day of the week: Car rental rates vary based on the rental day. Daily rates may be higher during certain days of the week and expect to pay more on the weekends.
Seasons of the year: Special offers may be available during certain holidays or seasons.
Additional drivers: Note that extra fees may apply for an additional driver.

New York Car Rental Tips

Before you rent a car in New York,

Shop around by calling several car hire companies to find out if the car you want is available and at what price. Prices vary widely among New York car rental companies. Make sure you are comparing similar sizes, types, locations, and dates.

Ask about required fees such as fuel or airport fees and additional costs which may affect the price you pay. Also ask about the required deposit if you do not have a credit card.

Always make a reservation, if possible. Unreserved rentals usually cost more. Also, call to confirm your reservation, so to be certain that the car will be available when you arrive.

Read the contract before you sign it. Never sign anything you do not understand and when in doubt, ask the rental clerk for explaination.

Check the car before driving away. Be sure that any dents or scratches are noted in the contract, so that you will not be charged for damaging the car on return.

If you are a member of the Automobile Association of America (AAA), you may be entitled to discounts on car rentals. Your credit card company may also offer rental protection when you use your card for payment. It always pays to check with them first.

The amount you pay for a rental car could depend on how you contact the rental car company. You may pay more if you call a car rental firm's toll-free hotline than if you contact an individual rental car office directly.

Related Content

Getting Around New York New York Taxi
New York Subway Train MTA Bus
Renting a Car in NYC New York Airport Shuttle
Staten Island Ferry New York Water Taxi
MetroCard JFK International Airport
LaGuardia International Airport Newark International Airport