Where to Rent a Manual Car: 6 Options Detailed (+ Where You Can’t)

Despite the decreasing popularity of manual transmission cars in the U.S., some rental car companies still provide them. It’s difficult to find a manual transmission car to rent because rental car companies prefer to carry vehicles that anyone can drive — manual cars become a liability when inexperienced stick shift drivers rent them.

If you choose to rent a manual car from one of the companies listed below, you should make sure you’re confident in your ability to drive stick; if you damage the drive-train, you could be held liable. Note that some companies make you sign a document stating that you can drive a manual, or even prove that you can drive manual before renting.

We’ve Done the Comparing for You — Here’s What We Recommend

If you’re looking to rent any type of car with a manual transmission — from “regular” cars to luxury or sports cars — your best option for renting will likely be the peer-to-peer rental company Turo. Individual owners list their own cars on the site, so the company does not have to add any cars to its “fleet.” You can find all types of manual cars on Turo depending on where you live, and its rates are typically much lower than other rental car companies.

If you prefer to rent with a traditional rental car company, you may want to consider Alamo Rent a Car, which is one of the few companies that lists a variety of manual cars (though mostly sports cars and luxury vehicles) on its site for booking.

Where to Rent a Manual Car

Below, we list the rental car companies that typically rent manual transmission cars, ordered starting with the companies with the best overall availability. We verified this information by contacting customer service representatives and making test rentals online. Note that even if a company usually has manual cars, not all locations may have them on hand at all times.

The cost to rent a manual transmission car will vary by location and type of rental, and there are often fees for additional drivers and for customers under the age of 25. In some states, including California, Illinois, Missouri, Nevada, Oregon, and Wisconsin, spouses are automatically counted as additional drivers for no extra fee. For more about the laws and rules surrounding additional drivers, see our article about renting a car for someone else.

Turo

  • Available manual cars: Depends on the owner; Turo is a peer-to-peer rental company
  • Age restrictions: Drivers under the age of 30 may not rent “high value” (cars worth more than $55,000) or “specialty” vehicles (1990 model year or older)
  • Additional drivers: Additional drivers must be approved either by Turo or the owner of the vehicle, depending on whose insurance is covering the car. If Turo covers the car, then additional drivers can be approved by following instructions in the Turo app. If the owner’s insurance covers the vehicle, additional drivers must meet the requirements of that insurance.
  • Rent a car with Turo (paid partner link)

Alamo Rent a Car

  • Available manual cars: Sports cars, luxury cars, exotic cars, and performance cars
  • Age restrictions: Though the minimum rental age is 25, customers aged 21 to 24 can rent for an additional surcharge. Certain vehicle classes may not be available to younger drivers.
  • Additional drivers: Must meet the same requirements as primary drivers; there is a fee of about $12 per day
  • Get rates and book online (Expedia paid partner link)

Budget Car Rental

  • Available manual cars: Vary by location; typically sports cars
  • Age restrictions: Though the minimum age requirement is 21, customers between 21 and 24 years of age must present a valid driver’s license along with a credit card (debit cards are not accepted). Customers in this age group are subject to a surcharge of $27 per day. Fees may vary by state, and some states may allow a minimum age of 18.
  • Additional drivers: Additional drivers must be 25+ and there is a fee of $13 per day, up to but not exceeding $65 for the entire rental period. This fee may vary by state, and some states do not have an additional driver fee.
  • Get rates and book online (Expedia paid partner link)

Thrifty Car Rental

  • Available manual cars: Vary by location; typically luxury sports cars, with more available in larger cities
  • Age restrictions: The minimum age requirement is 21. However, 21 to 24-year-old customers are subject to “underage” fees, which vary by location.
  • Additional drivers: Accepted as long as they meet the minimum age requirement and have a valid driver’s license. There is also a fee (dependent on location) for any additional driver. If additional drivers are between the ages of 21 and 24, they will also be subject to underage fees.
  • Get rates and book online (Expedia paid partner link)

Payless Car Rental

  • Available manual cars: Vary by location
  • Age restrictions: The minimum age requirement is 21. However, customers between the ages of 21 and 24 are required to pay a $25 per day surcharge.
  • Additional drivers: Accepted as long as they meet the minimum age requirement, have a valid driver’s license, and a credit card in their own name. There is a $13 fee per day for additional drivers.
  • Get rates and book online (Expedia paid partner link)

Rent A Wreck

  • Available manual cars: Vary by location; Rent A Wreck rents out used cars
  • Age restrictions: Some locations require a minimum age of 18, whereas others require a minimum age of 25. Those under 25 may still be able to rent with the use of a credit card, and a per-day surcharge may apply.
  • Additional drivers: Additional drivers are acceptable, but there is usually a fee, which varies by location.
  • Get rates and book online

Rental Car Companies That Don’t Have Manual Cars

In our search to find rental companies that offer manual transmission cars, we came across the following companies that don’t (at least in the U.S.):

  • Advantage Rent A Car
  • Avis Rent A Car
  • Budget Car Rental
  • Dollar Rent A Car
  • E-Z Rent A Car
  • Enterprise Rent-A-Car
  • Fox Rent A Car
  • Hertz Rent A Car
  • National Car Rental
  • Sixt Rent A Car
  • Zipcar

In Summary

Manual transmission vehicles aren’t very popular in the U.S. anymore, but you can still find them at a few car rental companies. For the widest selection of manual cars at the best prices, you’ll likely want to rent with Turo. Alamo also has several manual cars in its standard fleet, but these will likely be sports cars. If you are under 25 and want to rent a car, you will likely have to pay an additional daily underage driver fee. Policies vary by company, but additional drivers are usually also acceptable as long as they pay an additional fee, have a valid driver’s license, and meet any age requirements.

Keep in mind that you may be required to prove that you can drive a manual car before you are able to rent one since rental car companies are trying to make money, not lose it on repairs caused by misuse of their vehicles. If these companies find you have damaged a vehicle — especially as a result of improper manual driving — they will likely charge you for the repairs.

For more about renting a car, we explain the cheapest ways to rent a car, including information about discounts, rewards, etc.