11 sites to book rental cars online
Information verified correct on October 20th, 2016
Drive the price of your rental down by comparing the car rental companies from around the world.
Renting cars for holidays can be a confusing business. There are so many providers to choose from, all with different terms and conditistephaons, vehicles and models and, most crucially, prices.
We’ve rounded up the best car hire sites on the Internet to help take the stress out of your search.
What’s the difference between booking direct and booking with an online aggregator?
The first decision to make is whether you want to book direct through the rental company (such as Avis or Europcar) or through a booking engine or aggregator (like Expedia or Hotwire). We’ve previewed a mixture of both here, so you’ll have plenty to compare.
Something to keep in mind when deciding which to go for is the deals and specials each is offering. Sometimes it’s possible to get exclusive offers through aggregators, but going through an aggregator can occasionally create problems as it’s an extra ‘layer’ you have to go through if anything goes wrong. For example, if you need to change or modify your booking at a later date, you might have to contact the aggregator for details to contact the car hire company to make the amendments on your behalf.
If you’re going through an aggregator, read the terms and conditions properly so that you’re aware of who you will have to deal with at a later date and the processes to follow should any issues arise.
Global car hire giant Avis has been around since 1946. Since then it has expanded and currently has over 5,000 rental locations worldwide.
- Mobile app available for iOS
- Offers and specials available in the site’s deals section
- Avis Preferred Membership offers priority service and pricing
Search for cars from Avis
Despite the name Europcar is not confined to Europe. Since it was founded in 1949 it has spread to over 140 countries worldwide, and rents a wide variety of cars, vans and trucks.
- Redeem Virgin Velocity Frequent Flyer points against your booking
- Accounts available for business customers
- Privilege Loyalty Program offers exclusive rewards and discounts
Search for cars from Europcar
Hertz was founded in 1918 with just 12 Model-T Fords in its fleet. Today it has operations in over 146 countries and is the largest worldwide airport use car rental brand in the world.
- 24-hour roadside assistance with every booking
- Hertz Mobile Wi-Fi connects you to Wi-Fi wherever you go
- Hertz Gold Plus Rewards users receive exclusive rewards
Search for cars from Hertz
Part of the Avis rental group, Budget specialises in cars and trucks for those on, well, a budget. It stocks a wide range of cars, vans and trucks in over 2,500 locations worldwide.
- RMS E-Toll in all bookings automatically charges any tolls incurred to your credit card
- Join the Budget Fastbreak program for exclusive rewards
- Earn FlyBuys or Qantas Frequent Flyer points on all bookings
Search for cars with Budget
Use Drive Now to compare the price of car hire, plus book campervans and car relocations.
- Compare car prices from multiple companies
- Guaranteed best rate on your car hire or you'll get 10% off
- Book cars in almost 100 countries around the world
Search for cars with Drive Now
Since it was founded in 1996, Expedia has become one of the world’s leading online travel agents and is a trusted site for finding online deals. It is known for flight and hotel bookings, but also offers rental car deals.
- Price match guarantee ensures it won’t be beaten on price
- Exclusive last minute deals
- Expedia+ provides members-only discounts and deals
Search for cars with Expedia
Australian travel comparison site Webjet helps customers find the lowest price on hotels, flights, travel insurance, car hire and more.
- Compare thousands of prices from the world’s best-known car rental companies
- Live chat available
- Earn Flybuys points on all bookings
Search for cars with Webjet
Australian travel-planning site Wotif burst onto the scene in 2000, offering bookings for flights, hotels, packages and car hire.
- Customer reviews let you see what others thought of hotels, airlines and rental agencies
- No hotel booking fees
- Sign up to the newsletter for exclusive deals and savings
Search for cars with Wotif
One of Australia’s leading travel sites, BYOJet finds great deals on a range of travel needs, including car hire and discounts on world famous attractions.
- Car hire, packages and insurance available worldwide
- Live chat available
- Exclusive deals on local attractions
Search for cars with BYOJet
Hotwire specialises in unsold travel deals. This means that anytime a plane seat goes unsold, a hotel room goes unbooked or a hire care is not reserved, Hotwire swoops in and negotiates a cheaper rate for consumers.
- Exclusive rates and deals
- Get $10 off when you sign up for the newsletter
- Mobile app for on-the-go browsing and booking
Search for cars with Hotwire
Helloworld’s motto is: ‘experts in everywhere’ and with good reason. It has been helping travellers save money on their travel needs, including car hire, for over 40 years.
- Car rentals available in almost every country
- Constantly offers exclusive deals and specials
- Travel booking mobile app available at Google Play or the App Store
Which of these retailers allow me to compare different car companies?
- Wotif compares car hire companies including Avis, Europcar, Budget, Sixt and Hertz
- Drive Now compares both car hire and campervan rantak from popular companies including Hertz, Budget, Avis, Europcar, Britz, Jucy and Maui.
- Expedia compares car hire companies including Avis, Europcar, Budget, Hertz, Thrifty and Enterprise
- Webjet compares car hire companies including Avis, Budget, Hertz, Europcar and Thrifty
- Helloworld compares Avis, Budget, Hertz and Europcar
- BYOJet compares Avis, Thrifty, Europcar, Hertz and Budget
- Hotwire compares Alamo, Budget, Dollar Rent A Car, Enterprise, Europcar, Hertz, National and Thrifty
Which car hire company should I choose?
There's no single right answer to this question. Sometimes it might be cheaper to book direct with the car hire company, but aggregators like Wotif and Expedia may feature special deals that you can only access through them.
If you’re looking for the cheapest car hire available for your trip, spend the time to see what each company and aggregator is offering in terms of cars, price and insurance costs, to make an informed decision. Don’t forget to check out our coupon codes and deals [link to the coupons below] to see what steals you can drive away with.
Which of these retailers allow me to add on hire car insurance?
Which car hire providers let me hire a caravan?
Want to book car hire online? Use one of our coupons:
Third day free on weekends
Valid on rentals commencing until 12 December. Pickup must be after midday on a Thursday and drop off must be before midday on a Tuesday. Offer applies to car groups C, D, E, K, F, P, G, H, W, V, L, S.
Fourth day free
Valid on rentals commencing between 10 October and 12 December. Offer applies to car groups C, D, E, K, F, P, G, H, W, V, L, S. Rent select cars for four or more days in Australia and get the fourth day free.
Up to 20% off the base rate of 2+ day hires
Get up to 20% off the base rate when you book a 2+ day hire 21 days or more in advance.
Save up to 20% off the base rate
Save up to 20% off the basic rate simply by picking up your passenger car rental on a Sunday, Monday or Tuesday at Europcar AU.
Hire a car and get your fourth day free
Hire a car with Budget Car Hire through Drive Now for a minimum of four consecutive days and get your fourth day free of base rate charges. Available for pick ups at the airport in Cairns, Gold Coast, Sydney and Melbourne (Tullamarine). Valid on select vehicles including family, full-size and SUVs.
15% off 5-day car hire
Hire a car for five days with Europcar and get 15% off the base rate.
Price guarantee or you get 10% off
Get the lowest price on car hire guaranteed or you'll get 10% off your Drive Now booking.
10% Off Monthly Car Rental
Simply use code to get 10% off on monthly car rentals. Excludes Dream cars. Offer requires a minimum keep of 28 days. 24 hour advance reservations required. T&Cs apply.