Do You Really Need to be 25 to Rent a Car?

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One of the most common rental car questions, especially from younger people, is whether you really need to be 25 years old to rent a car. It wasn’t long ago that the answer was almost always yes, but that’s not necessarily the case anymore. Many rental car companies will rent to drivers who are at least over the age of 21 and there are a small number that will even rent to anyone over age 18.

One thing to keep in mind is that rental car companies will almost always charge an extra fee for younger drivers, so it’s usually more economical to have an older driver rent (and drive) the car. It’s difficult to have a comprehensive list of companies and locations that rent to younger drivers because sometimes policies are different depending on state law and even rental locations in the same state can sometimes have different policies. However, Alamo, Thrifty and Enterprise will rent to younger drivers in some locations, as will many other smaller rental car companies. So the smart move is to call a particular location first to check their policy, and then go ahead and make you reservation at Also remember that sometimes exceptions are made for government workers or military personnel, so be sure to ask about that if you might qualify.

Another thing to keep in mind is that it’s not a good idea to have someone over the age of 25 rent the car and then allow someone under age 25 to drive it without informing the rental car company. If you end up in an accident, then having an underage driver will only add to the problem.

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