4 Places to Rent a Car at Age 18 (+ Where You Can’t)

Two 18 year old women about to leave in their rental car are smiling.

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Rental car companies used to only do business with customers age 25 and up, but those rules have changed in recent years. Now, the minimum age at most rental agencies is 21.

It’s still possible to rent a car if you’re 18 — you just might have to pay a little extra. Below, we explain how and where to rent a car at age 18, plus where you can’t.

How to Rent a Car at 18

In most cases, rental car companies can set age limits at their own discretion, but state and federal laws mandate rental car agencies to do business with customers ages 18 and up in a couple of select situations.

You should be able to rent a car at 18 at most major car rental companies if you meet the following requirements:

  • You’re renting a car in New York or Michigan, where state law requires car rental agencies to rent to drivers ages 18 and older[1][2]
  • You have a military ID and are traveling on government business[3]

Otherwise, you’ll have to find a company that specifically permits rentals to 18-year-old drivers.

Underage Driver Fees

In most cases, 18-year-old renters will be subject to an under-25 young driver surcharge.

Rental car companies usually charge extra fees for drivers under 25 because young drivers are more likely to get into accidents.[4]

The List

Hertz logo


  • Minimum age: 18[5]
  • Young driver fee: $19 to $52 based on the location, driver’s age, and the vehicle being rented[5]
  • Restrictions: You can’t rent certain types of vehicles (e.g., Tesla) if you’re under 25.[5]
  • Book a rental

Rent-A-Wreck logo


  • Minimum age: 21 at most locations, but as low as 18 at some and as high as 25 at others. Call the location you’ll rent from to confirm a car is available.[6]
  • Young driver fee: Varies by rental location[6]
  • Restrictions: For customers under 25, Rent-a-Wreck usually requires a credit card as payment, and there are restrictions on which vehicle classes you can rent.[6]
  • Book a rental

Zipcar logo


  • Minimum age: 21, but 18 for college students and residents of Maryland, Michigan, or New York[7]
  • Young driver fee: None[7]
  • Restrictions: None[7]
  • Book a rental

Atwest Rent A Car logo

Atwest Rent a Car (Los Angeles and San Francisco only)

  • Minimum age: 18[8]
  • Young driver fee: Varies; will appear as “CDW & Liability” during the reservation process[8]
  • Restrictions: Under-21 customers must provide proof of their insurance policy; if the renter’s name doesn’t appear on the insurance card, bring the page of the policy showing the renter as an additional driver on the policy. Without proof of insurance, the minimum age is 21. [8]
  • Book a rental

Need a hotel too? See our list of hotels that allow 18-year-olds to book.

Companies That Don’t Rent to 18-Year-Olds

In the course of our research, we found that the following rental car agencies have minimum age requirements above 18:

ACE Rent a Car

  • Minimum age: 21 (most locations; may be as high as 25)[9]

Alamo Rent a Car

  • Minimum age: 21[10]

Avis Rent a Car

  • Minimum age: 21[11]


  • Minimum age: 21[12]

Dollar Rent a Car

  • Minimum age: 20 at most locations[13]


  • Minimum age: 21[1]

Fox Rent a Car

  • Minimum age: 19, 21, or 25 depending on the location[14]


  • Minimum age: 19 (22 in Los Angeles/Orange County)[15]

National Car Rental

  • Minimum age: 21[16]

Payless Car Rental

  • Minimum age: 21[17]


  • Minimum age: 22[18]

Sixt Rent a Car

  • Minimum age: 21[19]

Thrifty Car Rental

  • Minimum age: 20 at most locations[20]


  • Minimum age: 21 to 30, depending on the vehicle class[21]


  • Minimum age: 21[22]

If you’re about to turn 19, you can find more information about car rental companies that might work for you in our list of places to rent a car at 19.

  1. https://www.enterprise.com/en/help/faqs/car-rental-under-25.html[][]
  2. https://ag.ny.gov/consumer-frauds/car-rental-tip-sheet[]
  3. https://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/rentalCar.cfm[]
  4. https://www.cdc.gov/motorvehiclesafety/teen_drivers/teendrivers_factsheet.html[]
  5. https://www.hertz.com/rentacar/reservation/reviewmodifycancel/templates/rentalTerms.jsp?KEYWORD=AGE&EOAG=LGAT01[][][]
  6. https://www.rentawreck.com/rental-requirements.htm[][][]
  7. https://support.zipcar.com/hc/en-us/articles/220333808-Eligibility-Requirements[][][]
  8. https://www.atwestcarrental.com/policy.php?arcm=300#6[][][]
  9. https://www.acerentacar.com/Faq.aspx[]
  10. https://www.alamo.com/en_US/car-rental-faqs/age-requirements.html[]
  11. https://www.avis.com/en/help/usa-faqs/age-requirements[]
  12. https://www.budget.com/en/customer-care/faqs/global/requirements-for-renting[]
  13. https://www.dollar.com/AboutUs/GeneralPolicies.aspx[]
  14. https://www.foxrentacar.com/en/rental-policies.html[]
  15. https://www.getaround.com/terms/eligibility-requirements[]
  16. https://www.nationalcar.com/en/support/car-rental-faqs/age-requirements.html[]
  17. https://www.paylesscar.com/en/customer-service/faq/global/requirements-for-renting[]
  18. https://support.silvercar.com/hc/en-us/articles/205238760-What-is-the-minimum-driver-age-[]
  19. https://www.sixt.com/rental-services/rental-information/[]
  20. https://www.thrifty.com/CustomerCare/content/FAQ.aspx[]
  21. https://support.turo.com/hc/en-us/articles/203991070-Age-restrictions[]
  22. https://www.usave.com/Policies.aspx?franid=100097[]


  • Javier

    I’m planning to rent a car in Miami and have my daughter (17 years old, clean driving license) as additional driver. Any suggestion regarding rental car company?
    Many thanks in advance

  • Jm

    Hello, i am 19 looking for a rental in Rhode Island… any help?

  • Teresa

    I am 48 years old and would like to rent a car at Miami int’l airport. I also want to apply my 19 years old son as an additional driver. What rental companies can meet my requirement?

  • NH

    I live in Danbury, CT I’m 18. I plan to go to Groton, CT. What would be the best choice for me if anyone could tell me, please?

  • Jd

    I’ll be 20 soon and comute from Sacramento to Los Angeles every thursday-sunday, what rent a car companies would be a affordable rate with no fee pre however many miles,

  • Leo Cast

    Hi so I’m 18 and I plan to go to Portland Oregon, what would be my best option? Thank you

    • First Quarter Finance logo
      First Quarter Finance | Kathleen Wilson

      Hi Leo, it looks like your best option is to use Zipcar. If you’re enrolled in college, you have no underage driver fee.

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