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The Complete United States Driving and Rental Guide

The United States is usually more suitable for automobile compared to public transportations. Travelling by car is thus a good way to get around to see sights of the country, whether you are planning a complete road trip, or just using a leg of your trip by taking a car to visit the cities. Here is a guide we have prepared to help you familiarized yourself with driving in the USA.

  • Speed Limit and Traffic Signs
  • Seatbelt and Child Safety
  • Parking, Fuel and Toll
  • Traffic Violation
  • Driving Licence and Age Requirements

Speed Limit and Traffic Signs

Driving is on the right with the steering wheel on the left-hand side of the car. Since traffic rules differ from state to state, it is better to review the regulations for each individual state in which you are planning to drive. Pedestrians have the legal right of way in all states.

Speed Limit

The speed limit varies from state to state, butis of 65 miles per hour (equals110 km p/h) in the majority of the states. Speed limit is frequently monitored by radar guns.

Traffic Signs

Many US states comply with the same road signs standard, but some of the states and large cities such as New York City have adopted an extent of localization or a supplement. 


Although there is a variety of regulatory signs throughout different states, they are usually self-explanatory, with explicit wordings marked on the signs.

United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_StopStopUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Yield_Give_WayYield(Give Way)United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign__Yield_to_PedestriansYield to Pedestrians, New York CityUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Passing_Zone_EndsPassing Zone EndsUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Passing_Zone_BeginsPassing Zone BeginsUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_ParkingNo ParkingUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_Parking_Here_to_CornerNo Parking; Here to cornerUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_Parking_Except_SundaysNo Parking; Except Sundays

Among regulatory signs, there is one category which indicates ‘No Standing’, and may be unfamiliar for foreign visitors or international travellers. ‘No standing’ signs indicate that stopping temporarily to load or unload passengers is allowed, while parking is not allowed. The signs are also usually red on white, but local variations exist.

United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_Standing_Any_TimeNo Standing Any TimeUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_Standing_Any_Time_New_York_StateNo Standing Any Time New York StateUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_Standing_Cars_Towed_Away_BaltimoreNo Standing Cars Towed Away, Baltimore

Warning signs feature yellow background colour and black pictogram, with a few exceptions.

United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Road_Slippery_When_WetRoad Slippery When WetUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Curve_With_Speed_AdvisoryCurve With Speed AdvisoryUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Stop_AheadStop AheadUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Yield_AheadYield AheadUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Railroad_Crossing_CrossbuckRailroad Crossing(Crossbuck)United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Railroad_Crossing_AheadRailroad Crossing Ahead

Information signs provide guidance and feature rectangular shape.

United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Toll__Road_Pass_OnlyToll Road Pass OnlyUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Toll_Road_Pass_or_HOV_2+Toll Road Pass or HOV 2+United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Toll_Costs_at_Intersections_or_HOV_2+Toll Costs at Intersections or HOV 2+United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Hospital_signHospital Sign

You may refer to this for the unified standard that is used by the states.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Seatbelt and Child Safety

Seatbelt Laws

All drivers and passengers are regulated by law to wear seatbelts. A fine applies if a driver or passenger is caught without a seatbelt on.

Booster Seat Laws

Even though regulations vary by state, almost all states require children to be in a child seat facing backwards in the front of a car, or facing forward in the rear. As a minimum guide, children should use a booster seat until they reach 36kg to 45kg or 145cm high. 


For a specific guidance regarding child safety rules, you may click here.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Parking, Fuel and Toll

Parking

You must always park in the direction of the traffic flow on the near side of the road. Often, parking spaces are diagonally aligned and ‘head-in’, which means the front of your car must be facing the pavement (sidewalk).


· Parking Restriction

In some cities, parking restrictions are indicated by the kerb colour; for example, a red kerb indicates no parking at any time, a yellow kerb may signify a limited truck loading zone, a green kerb indicates a limited parking period, a blue kerb for disabled parking only, and a white kerb passenger loading and unloading. No parking areas, for example, at street corners, may be indicated by yellow lines. Therefore, you should always read all pavement markings carefully.

United States Red Kerb No Parking(Image from aarestriping.com)

United States Yellow Lines No Parking(Image from merchantcircle.com)

United States Yellow Kerb Loading Only(Image from timeout.com)


 · Paid Parking

Parking in most cities and towns isn’t usually a problem and on-street parking is usually metered, along with permissive parking signs specified with a restricted amount of time. It’s advisable for you to estimate your parking time and reserve a bit more parking fee as a precaution to avoid the fine for overtime parking. 


The signs are green and white, and local variations do occur with additional information or slightly different designs. 

United States Traffic Sign Parking with Time RestrictionsParking with Time RestrictionsUnited States Traffic Sign Parking With Time Restrictions (New York City)Parking With Time Restrictions New York City

Fuel Prices

The average price for USA gasoline and diesel during July to October 2017 is US$0.74.

Toll

It has more than 5,000 miles of toll roads in the USA. From bridge and tunnel tolls to express and high occupancy lanes, most states have some sort of toll road system. 


Nowadays most tolls are collected electronically via transponders that are typically placed on the windshield of the vehicle. As many toll roads no longer accept cash. It is recommended to check the individual websites of each state's toll system to inform yourself about the payment options along with your route. 


If you are hiring a vehicle from Enterprise, National or Alamo in the USA, you can review and pay the tolls online via Highway Toll Administration site; if hiring from Avis or Budget, you can check the e-toll site. For Hertz, Dollar, Thrifty and Advantage, toll charge can be checked on PlatePass.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Traffic Violation

DUI Laws

Depending on states, drivers are charged with a fine or a crime with 0.08% or 0.05% BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) limit by volume. 

Traffic Fines

Extra care should be applied to abide speed limit when driving in the United States, as speeding fines can be ranging from $36 to $1000 for first-time breaker states by states. A Nation-wide average speeding ticket is US$150


Failing to understand and follow the parking signs will potentially result in a hefty fine. This is especially the case for big cities like San Francisco, New York City and Chicago. For example, stopping, standing or parking where signs, road markings or traffic control devices do not permit you to do so will incur a fine of US$115 in New York City. In San Francisco, obstructing traffic without a permit in San Francisco will result in a fine as high as US$1000


Failure to pay traffic infringement fines will likely result in your car rental company collecting the fee from you, with an additional administration charge. These policies are generally illustrated in the terms of the contract on which you signed at the rental desk. For any further questions concerning these matters, you are welcomed to contact QEEQ’ 24/7 customer service team for assistance.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Driving Licence and Age Requirements

To drive in the United State, the driver must have a valid driving licnece that has been held for at least 1 or 2 years(according to different car hire company). The licence must be valid at the time of rental, and remain valid throughout the rental period.


The minimum age to rent a vehicle in most locations in the U.S is 21 years (age may vary by state and car category), and the driver must have a valid driver's license held for at least one year. For certain specialty and larger-sized vehicles, the minimum age of 25 years of age applies. If you're 21-25, you are likely to have to pay a young driver fee which is about $25-per-day to $50-per-day.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Guest reviews

1 /

May 12, 2022

Destination: San Diego

6.3V poor pickup experience

Pre-ordered baby seat wasn’t in car at pickup, had to drive 30 min to another Hertz outlet to pick it up. Very annoying.

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W.Snyder

May 12, 2022

Destination: Philadelphia

10Great experience.

Beautiful roomy clean car with updated features.

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J.Bustamante A

May 12, 2022

Destination: Miami

10Buen auto, precio ok,fácil recojo y devolución. Que mas!

No tuve mayor contacto con el personal del Alamo. Todo fue facil.

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Roger

May 11, 2022

Destination: San Diego

9Faultless

Excellent service from agent in San Diego.

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CDGRKGO

May 11, 2022

Destination: Boise

10Excellent

Avis is always dependable in Boise.

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H.DAHDOH

May 11, 2022

Destination: Los Angeles

7.7Bad experience

Lot of extra charge The price will be doubled after this charge And no any company refund the deposit Relly really bad experience

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S.Pindoria

May 11, 2022

Destination: Phoenix

9.7Fantastic

Great service all round

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L.Medrano

May 11, 2022

Destination: Dallas

9Dallas, 5 people, total success!

Había una fila larga pero avanzó rápido, tomamos 30 min aprox. El coche no estaba muy limpio pero tampoco estaba sucio.

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May 11, 2022

Destination: Miami

8.3Buen servicio de QEEQ pero en el mostrador me vi forzada a comprar un seguro que no necesitaba

El vehículo estaba en buenas condiciones, pese a que yo contaba con un seguro, terminaron por venderme el de ellos argumentando que de otro modo no tendría todas las coberturas. Eso triplicó el valor final que tuve que pagar frente al valor de mi reserva original.

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K.Zehnter

May 10, 2022

Destination: Fort Myers

8.3Very Good

Antwort nur in deutscher Sprache

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Rodrigo Leite

May 10, 2022

Destination: Orlando

10Gostei, muito pratico e objetivo, encontrei o que precisava.

Carro atendeu as expectativas, sem problemas para encontrar no aeroporto, atendimento rapido, só faltou um atendimento em outro idioma sem ser o ingles, mas conseguimos resolver.

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S.Strand

May 10, 2022

Destination: San Diego

10Great car, bur costly upgrade fee from Hertz for one with built-in SatNav.

Car had a built in SatNav which was essential, but the upgrade was $280 ($20 dollars per day), over half again the $440 we paid QEEQ for the original booking.

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C.Richards

May 10, 2022

Destination: Santa Ana

9.3Excellent

Nothing much to say. Everything went smooth and easy!

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D.Rineer

May 10, 2022

Destination: Wilmington

10One of the highlights of the trip: Thank you, Hertz.

Did take a little while get the car, but everything was busy at Hertz and the other two agencies. My rep could not have been more professional and courtesy. I don't fly much any more, and I don't rent cars much, but I would/will certainly want another experience like this one.

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C.Jay

May 10, 2022

Destination: Melbourne

9Excellent service, great car & competitive pricing.

Car was spacious and modern. Staff were a bit slow but seemed new so we were fine with this. Car was a bit scratched but I guess this is what you get with rental cars. Overall experience excellent.

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Vishwas Shashidhar

May 10, 2022

Destination: Los Angeles

9.3Great experience with Qeeq & Alamo

A very good car, great condition, well maintained & clean. Swift service & friendly staff.

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M.Saunders

May 9, 2022

Destination: Orlando

9.3The almost perfect car hire experience

The car was was brilliant. The sat nav helped immensely getting around Orlando, it even had the BudgerbCar rental drop off in its database.

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Edwin Kiew

May 9, 2022

Destination: Las Vegas

10Awesome experience with both QEEQ and Alamo

The car exceed expectations, was given the opportunity to pick which vehicle that I preferred

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May 9, 2022

Destination: Chicago

8.3QEEQとても便利で安心できます

Hertzのpresident circleを持っていたので、gold deskで対応してもらい、好きな車を選ばせてくれました

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R.Dixon

May 9, 2022

Destination: Waikoloa Hawaii

9.3Good experience

We received an upgrade because the car we booked was not available

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S.Porto

May 9, 2022

Destination: Medford

10It was a good experience.

Everything ok with Hertz. Good staffing.

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D.Stanleigh

April 29, 2022

Destination: Orlando

8.7Will use you again.

Car was good.Counter service slow but maybe a lot of people arrived at same time.Pick-up staff were a bit offhand saying help yourself we’re too busy to show you to your car..

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G.Karlsson

April 29, 2022

Destination: Orlando

8.7Pretty happy since I got an upgrade as the car I was supposed to get was not ok.

Please make sure to have more then 2 employees working at the counter, the waiting time on the evening of the 5th was almost 2 hours!

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Jyoti Vora

April 28, 2022

Destination: Charlotte

8Very Good

Had to wait for counter staff who were not 100% sure ref the car type & options

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T.CASSIDY

April 27, 2022

Destination: Oakland

10Efficient, Easy and Professional

Brilliant car, service and easy pick up and drop off.

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m.musgrove

April 27, 2022

Destination: Orlando

9.7Great car but very expensive

The car was better than expected plenty of room and a great drive

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J.Nicholson

April 27, 2022

Destination: Los Angeles

8Easy to book

They couldn't find my booking when I arrived so the process took longer than expected. It wasn't easy finding the pick up point at LAX

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JD

April 27, 2022

Destination: San Diego

8.7Great app, terrible rental experience.

Waited over two hours to pick up my rental. The line was long and was not moving for hours because they were understaffed.

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R.Flynn

April 26, 2022

Destination: Tampa

9.3Great, painless experience with QEEQ and Hertz!

My flight was delayed 24 hours, I called Hertz direct to let them know, it was no problem and they refunded me for the day that I didn't use. Pick-up and drop-off were both very quick, car was clean... everything went smoothly.

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H.Giere

April 26, 2022

Destination: Raleigh

6.3It was good.

It took for ever on the couter.

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D.Gowens

April 26, 2022

Destination: Orlando

6.3Disappointing

Budget staff must be on some sort of bonus to up sell the "pay for your gas now" and "sun pass" options, the tuts and looks of disbelief, including rolling eyes, and shaking head, at the fact I did not want to pay for these was really over the top... The car turned out to be marked all over and the seats stained inside, the guy at the booth just shrugged his shoulders. Seems like the price of car hire has shot up but the standards have really dropped.

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April 26, 2022

Destination: Tampa

8.3Very Good

The car was old and tired and therefore expensive for what it was.

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April 26, 2022

Destination: New Orleans

8Super et rapide

Surclassement sans frais..toutes les assurances incluses

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April 26, 2022

Destination: Tampa

8Rapide et conforme

Rapide et véhicule mieux que prévu !!

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S.DE LA GARZA AQUINO

April 26, 2022

Destination: Las Vegas

10Buena Experiencia.

Todo estuvo excelente sin ningún contratiempo.

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C.Hausmann

April 26, 2022

Destination: North Charleston

7.3Terrible

Car was supposed to be 100% smoke free and had a terrible marijuana smell we couldn’t get rid of and they didn’t have similar cars so we couldn’t switch it

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D.Ritchie

April 25, 2022

Destination: Orlando

10The rental was hastle free and value for money

The car was what we required and happy with the vehicle

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Diga

April 25, 2022

Destination: Oakland

10Excellent

RAS véhicule parfait niveau gabarit pour un séjour à l'étranger en couple.

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Mike S

April 25, 2022

Destination: Melbourne

10An overall faultless experience

Faultless

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Jenn W

April 25, 2022

Destination: Seattle

9Not great

Fox was awfully slow to give us a car - nearly 2 hours!!!, and everything seemed disorganized.

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g.connery

April 25, 2022

Destination: Los Angeles

6.3Average

A lot of upselling and add ons at the desk especially various insurances. Upgraded to premium at extra cost. Car was tired, 31k + miles, windows didnt shut properly. Rattles from back of car.

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JNM

April 25, 2022

Destination: Orlando

7.3Great price however the car quality poor.

The car was not very clean, had a cracked windscreen which we didn’t notice until the following morning. It also had no parcel shelf. When you collect a car at Orlando you do so in poorly light multi story car park. The car had done 44000 miles and wasn’t pleasant to drive. We have hired lots of cars in the USA from ALAMO, DOLLAR, AVIS & HERTZ and that was the worst.

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d.Nye

April 25, 2022

Destination: Nashville

8.7Good value and a great car

We were a little confused at pick up as we came to the airport by private car. We found the pick up point but thought we were at the wrong place as it said it was for gold members dropping off. As there was a queue we couldn’t ask a staff member and a person in the queue told us we were at the wrong place. Some clearer signage would have helped us

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F.Sanchez

April 24, 2022

Destination: Hawaii - Oahu Island (honolulu)

7Seriedad y profesionalidad

Mucha cola en los mostradores para recogida,y poco personal atendiendo(solo 2 personas). Mucha seriedad como compañia.Atención perfecta,tanto en mostrador de recogida como en devolución.

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S.Badaoui

April 21, 2022

Destination: San Antonio

2Terrible. Necesito reembolso

No pude recoger el auto porque me pedían mi visa americana, yo soy residente americano y les entregue mi green card. No me la quisieron aceptar porque insistieron que co pasaporte Mexicano tenían que poner información de la visa. Les expliqué que esa era mi visa pero no me quisieron aceptar la documentación y no me entregaron el carro.

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Les Weath

April 21, 2022

Destination: Port Charlotte

9.7Nice car, simple pickup /dropoff, excellent service

Excellent service, counter staff really helpful and very pleasant to deal with

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jamie Horastead

April 20, 2022

Destination: New Orleans

7Bad

The vehicle was not fit for rental, for the whole 500 mile journey the air bag alarm kept going off, very worrying when you past 2 fatal accidents. I reported this to Alamo / enterprise, but I’ve heard nothing back from them, which I find exceptionally bad.

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a.hodgson

April 20, 2022

Destination: San Francisco

9.7Good

Hertz should have informed us about california road tolls and how to set up system to pay them. We found out too late ! Not good

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MJB

April 20, 2022

Destination: San Francisco

9Easy, no fuss and great price!

A bit of a wait at the rental desk. There was one person sat at the desk who wasn’t seeing anyone but it turned out she was training so fair enough! The people I did interact gave top notch customer service. Car was as expected - it had a few scuffs and scratches but for the price I was happy enough. One gripe - the person who brought it round forgot to put the handbrake on so the car started rolling away as we put our luggage in!! Managed to jump in and grab the hand brake without too much issue though. Drop off very easy - staff super friendly again! Overall would recommend!

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Driver 64

April 20, 2022

Destination: Miami

7.7Good

No flexibility to Change without additional money the drop off station in the Same City

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Best car rental deals in United States

Best rates found by QEEQ users in the last 30 days.

Frequently asked questions

Q1.What is an insurance excess?

The excess is the amount you'll only be liable for in case of damage(under Collision Damage Waiver) or theft(under Theft Protection) of the vehicle.
Information about the excess will be clearly stated in the price inclusion when you reserve a car on QEEQ.

Q2. How can I add an addtional driver?

You are advised to make a request upon your arrival at the rental counter. Additional charge per day will incur unless '1 Additional Driver Included' is stipulated on the rental.
Please note that the same licence and age requirement applys to the additonal driver. The addtional driver is supposed to present the required licence document along with the main driver at pickup.

Q3.What if I want to pick up or drop off my rental car out of office hours?

QEEQ will show you the car offers available at your chosen time on the search results.
However, pick-up or drop-off out of general opening hours may subject to an extra fee unless self-service pick-up or drop-off is available.
After you reserve a car on QEEQ, we will inform you of specific policy of the car hire company by email.

Q4. Can I take the hired car to another country or cross border?

If you want to pick up your car in one country and drop it in another, your search results will show you cars you can do that with.
If you're planning to cross any borders during your trip, bear in mind:
1. You may have to pay more.
There are often extra fees, taxes or additional cover you'll pay at the car hire counter.
2.It may not be allowed.
Depending on where you're hiring, you may not be able to take your car to another country.
Please email us if you want to take your hire car into a different country during your trip, and we'll talk you through your options.

Q5. Can I pick up my car at one location and return it at different location?

Yes. You can pick up the vehicle in one place and drop it off in another. An ‘one-way fee’ will incur. Whether it is inclued in the rental price or what additional cost may arise will be clearly stated at the time of booking on QEEQ.
Please inform the car hire company of your drop-off location when you pick up the vehicle or contact them directly during your trip. You will find a phone number on the rental agreement you signed at pickup.

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