Travel Tips and News. Whether you're American or Canadian, your passport and driver's license are all you need in most European countries. Laugh at yourself, breathe it all in, stop and take too many pictures, and enjoy the little mistakes you make along the way. (1 km = 0.6 mi). Speed limits and distances in England are shown in miles. However, some countries also require an International Driving Permit (IDP). For more information on the different road signs in the UK, check out this website. Donna Janke is a writer based in Canada out of Winnipeg, Manitoba. Many car hire companies will charge a premium for renting to drivers aged under 21, and certain higher performance vehicles will be restricted to those over 25 years old. This amount, more commonly referred to as a deductible in North America, is known as the Excess or Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) and can range from £1,000 to £2,000. Our goal, to share the world’s unique, hidden and once in a lifetime locations with you to create unforgettable memories. Also keep in mind that because you’re on the opposite side of the road, the slow lane is the left lane and the right lane is the fast lane where you pass. The default for most car rentals in the United Kingdom is standard transmission. Legal Requirements for Driving in the UK • The minimum driving age is 17, however the minimum age to hire a car is 25. I ended up settling on Enterprise in Bath, England where I would pick up my car only to drop it off a week later in Edinburgh, Scotland. Tell us when you plan to travel and we’ll show you the best car rental prices, whatever your budget, whether you need a couple-sized compact or a family vehicle with plenty of space for luggage. took a couple YEARS off of mine ? Kids cost more to drive rental cars. Because after all, if it isn’t fun… what’s the point? Just keep breathing and remember that it is best to arrive alive. Due to changing advisories, please check local travel guidelines before visiting. In some cases, that may involve providing a doctor's certificate. Also, double-check that you will have cell service with your phone company and if not find an alternative. If you’re used to the blinker being on the left side, it’s probably now on the right side, etc. SIXT rent a car Magazine. Of course, those loaning you a rental car in the UK want to limit their … If you get a rental car with this device, you can simply enter the address, and it will give you turn-by-turn instructions and directions, both spoken and displayed on the device. Kylee is a traveling Neonatal Intensive Care (NICU) nurse with a love for solo travel, wine, and Taylor Swift. There are other rental car offices located near the airport, but you would probably need to take a shuttle, and in my opinion, after a long day of travel, it’s not worth the extra hassle (my mom did this because the car rental was cheaper but regretted it). Please observe the revised limit. In situations where you've allowed another car to go first, that driver may flash headlights as a "thank you.". Picking up the Rental Car 1 Go to the location where you have reserved your rental car. Note also that there remains a fixed amount the renter must pay toward the repairs. If you rent a car in the UK the typical etiquette is to fill up your car first, then pay inside when you’re done. Where is cruise control? In the UK, that is no exception. When I finally picked dates and started to book hotel arrangements, I got online to rent a car. Left turns on red lights are prohibited. That is a signal to be ready to move, but you mustn't start moving until the light is green. If you’re coming from a country that drives on the other side of the road than the UK keep in mind that all of the car’s bells and whistles will be turned around. However, you may encounter unofficial headlight flashing as a way of saying "go ahead" or "thank you. Driving on the "opposite" side of the road can be as disorienting for passengers as for drivers. We hand-pick everything we recommend and select items through testing and reviews. I’m Kylee, a NICU nurse... who loves to travel! As is the case in many other countries, car rental insurance in England can cost more than the basic cost of the car itself. What it Takes and Costs to Lease a Car in The United Kingdom As an international professional (expatriate) you can discuss your car requirements before you move to the UK or once you have arrived. Her life as a travel writer began after she retired from a professional career in IT. Also, make sure to ask what kind of gas your car requires before filling up. Vehicle Damage Cover covers the cost of damages to the rental vehicle. I initially thought my husband was drifting over to the left, but when I checked lane lines on the road I realized he was within his lane and where he should be. If you simply drive your rental car into a new country without arranging it, you’ll void any protection that’s included in your rental (and any extra insurance you buy). There are a few things you should know before driving on such extremely narrow roads. Whether you’re visiting from abroad or travelling internally, the best way to make the most of any trip is to hire a car. How do you work the radio? Donna loves discovering the unique character of places, near and far, and writing to inspire others in their travels. Roundabouts in busy areas may have traffic lights controlling entry. The first difference is in the car itself. I picked a nice, small, automatic car and crossed that part off of my “to-do” list. Drivers over 30 years-old can rent full-size MPVs, premium vehicles/exotic cars and Luton vans (similar to box/commercial trucks in the US). Be prepared to back up to those spots when a car approaches from the other direction. If you are renting a car after flying into an airport, follow the signs to rental cars. There are a few basic guidelines for navigating roundabouts. A big difference between America compared to other countries is that most other countries use the metric system, whereas in America we use the system of Imperial units. Tips on car hire in Portugal Here we have put together some tips on what to consider when looking for a rental car in Portugal. Because distance and will be in km (instead of miles), it will be useful to be able to roughly convert between the two. Book your rental car online Looking for, searching for and booking a rental car online is cheaper, easier and takes less time. Keep in mind these tips on selection, vehicle size, and insurance options, and you will be well on your way to an eye opening visit! Rentals are subject to change and may not be available on all car rentals listed or dates of travel. Here are some useful things to know about car rental or "car hire" as it is called in England. I swear that trip took a few weeks off my life! Typically, you need to decline the rental company CDW in order to use credit card coverage and that may be difficult if the CDW is bundled into the rental price. If there are, contact your bank or the hire car company immediately. However, the clutch, gas, and brake pedals are in the same positions you're used to. Fourth, enjoy the scenery! Do not flash your headlights to convey any other message or intimidate other road users." The rules are usually driven by what insurance provider they use. The lesson? At certain times of the day, lower speed limits may be in effect to prevent start-stop congestion. We want to inspire you to explore new destinations, discover new experiences and savor the journey. If you are taking the first roundabout exit to the left, stay in the left lane and signal left. What do I Need to Rent a Car in the UK? You may instinctively look the wrong way for oncoming traffic. Or worse, get a ticket! UK Driving Travellers Tips It is a good idea to come with an International Driver's Permit, it means you have another form of identification and car hire companies may request this in their requirements for hiring a car n the UK. Some may not rent to people over 70 years old and some may charge an extra fee for the youngest and oldest drivers. Officially, the UKHighway Code states: "Only flash your headlights to let other road users know that you are there. Once you're on the road, take it slow while you adjust. Enter the roundabout when it is clear to do so, turning to the left. Make sure that is the true intent of the flashing and that it is safe to proceed before doing so. On 1 January 2021, the UK and the EU will start following their new agreement, which will include rules on how the EU treats UK visitors (and how the UK treats EU visitors). One of the key elements to maintaining a smooth road trip in an unfamiliar country is to first get acclimated to your car. As I planned my *epic* solo trip through Europe, one of the top items on my bucket list was to rent a car in the UK. Signs as you approach the roundabout show the position of exits/roads fanning out from the intersection so you can plan where you want to exit before you enter. Also, be sure that the company from which you’re renting offers any extras you might need or want, such as a ski rack, car … There are speed cameras capturing images of speeders' license plates. We compare car rental deals at UK airports, coastal ports and at convenient downtown locations across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Know how to contact local law enforcement, your car rental agency, and even a tow truck in case something were to go wrong. Renting a Car In the UK Home » About » Useful Information (After Arrival) » Renting a Car If you wish to rent a car during your time in the UK, you need to have a valid driving licence and usually be over 21 years of age – check with the company first. The insurance terminology used may be unfamiliar to you. I started Passports and Preemies in 2017 when I was volunteering in Skopje, North Macedonia. If people are frustrated with the way you drive, they can pass you. And my best tip of all – have fun with it! As I bought guidebooks, read blogs, and looked at Pinterest pins I began dreaming up my dream England + Scotland road trip itinerary. • At unmarked crossings the car from the right will have right of way, the same goes for cars already in a roundabout. Read the UK Highway Code for complete rules on navigating roundabouts. Your email address will not be published. If you’re looking for more information and inspiration on renting a car in the UK, you might find these posts helpful: Why You Shouldn’t Rent a Car As a Solo American Traveler in the UK, Solo Guide to a 7-Day Road Trip Through the UK, 6 Solo Road Trip Tips – How to Have An Epic Road Trip When You’re Alone. Not only do traffic lights turn amber when they switch from green to red, they turn amber before switching from red to green. WHEW! I wanted to look back with fond memories and say to myself, “Wow! Hahahah I should’ve asked the rental guy to come with me! If you rent a car in the UK the typical etiquette is to fill up your car first, then pay inside when you’re done. For a complete list of driving rules, read the UK Highway Code. Our mission is to serve the 50+ traveler. Renting a car in the UK can make for a truly lovely holiday away, and the process does not have to be stressful. London traffic can be busy and chaotic, plus it costs £11.50 to drive weekdays in the Congestion Zone Area in central London. If you find navigating the insurance options overwhelming, enlist the help of a travel agent. Tips for Driving in the UK. Maximum age limits, when they are present, vary from 70 to 80. You can plan your trip to avoid narrow roads, but they are often picturesque, and will lead you to quaint villages with welcoming pubs and inns. The important thing is to know what you’re getting for your money and make sure you go through the agreement thoroughly. Putting the wrong type of fuel in the tank can cause damage that you may be liable for. At VroomVroomVroom, we have made comparing car rentals as quick and easy as possible to save time and money. Other insurance coverages relate to damages to the rental car itself. Even when no maximum age limit exists, extra charges may apply or insurance clearance may be required prior to renting. If your credit card offers car rental insurance, check with your card issuer to confirm they provide coverage in the UK, what they cover and under what conditions. Rules regarding older drivers also vary from company to company. Top 20 Safe Driving Tips Car Rental Hidden Costs 10 Things Not to Do When Renting a Car. Rental car companies make most of their profits by trying to sell you add-ons and extras. Roundabouts, circular intersections in which traffic flows around a central island, are commonplace and provide an excellent means of keeping traffic moving, but they can be challenging to drivers not used to them. As you become used to them, you appreciate the role they play in keeping traffic moving. Car Hire 4 Less - Great deals with over 20,000 car rental locations worldwide ebookers.com - Book you holiday car hire before leaving the UK with one of the best know travel companies around. Some car rental companies provide a GPS navigation system in the car for extra charge, e.g., NeverLost from Hertz is $10 extra per day. Vehicle Theft Cover, or Theft Protection, is another available optional insurance to cover the cost of replacing the car or parts of it in the event of theft. If you are taking an exit to the right or going full circle, signal right and enter the roundabout in the right-hand lane. Europcar UK - Europcar is one of the leading car hire companies in the world, … Overhead digital signs notify you when the variable speed limit is in effect and what that speed is. Additional insurance coverages, such as Super Collision Damage Waiver (SCDW) or Excess Cover, can be purchased to reduce the excess amount. I wanted to roll down the windows and breathe in the fresh air as I moved from town to town, crossing country borders; something you can’t do on a bus or train. How to choose the right size car for driving in the UK. You made it look easy too with your rental! However, it doesn't take long to become accustomed to these intersections. Have No Claims or Conviction. Learn more with our International Car Rental Tips.) Make sure to familiarize yourself with the different signs so that you don’t get confused when driving. Sometimes this is included in the car rental package. Hi friends! Fast forward 3-months later and I showed up to Enterprise on the day of my reservation to pick up my automatic, compact car, and little did I know… they only had manual cars. 8 Reasons To Fall In Love With Charming Wells, England, 7 Reasons To Visit Doddington Hall In Lincolnshire, England, At Christmas, 6 Unique Historic Sites To Visit In England, Going Underground: Tips For Exploring The World’s Longest Cave System, Fantastic Ski Resorts To Enjoy No Matter Where You Live (Plus The Best Ski Gear Of 2021), These 5 States Are Perfect For A Winter Road Trip, For details on Gateway Blend's privacy and cookie policies, please visit our. Surcharges for drivers under 25 years of age can be hefty. Also, be careful of overcompensating and veering too far to the left. Third party Cover (TPC), also known as Third Party Liability Insurance, is a legal requirement and is generally included in the baseline car rental. You drove a car on the opposite side of the road all by yourself!” I was looking forward to taking my time, being my own boss. This means that if you have an accident, or if your car gets stolen or damaged, you’ll pay all the costs to the rental company out of your own pocket. In the United Kingdom, vehicles drive on the left side of the road. She shares her travel discoveries on her blog, Destinations Detours and Dreams, using a combination of narrative, photography, and personal reflection, all with an eye for detail. No matter which coverages you purchase, you will usually not be covered for damage caused by breaching the rental agreement, negligence, or using the wrong fuel. There is nothing worse than being stranded and not knowing how to contact the local authority or having the cell service to do so. Some intersections have separate left-turn lights. Get rental car insurance online When it comes to buying rental car insurance, stick to the basics. Your email address will not be published. ), I decided that it was time to bite the bullet and live out my dream of driving across England and Scotland. Would have saved me a heart attack or two. What You Need to Know About Insurance When Renting a Car in the UK. Variable speed limits apply to some motorways, expressways designed for fast travel and long distances. Renting a car seems like a straightforward process, but it can often be more expensive than expected. If your credit card offers car rental insurance, check with your card issuer to confirm they provide coverage in the UK, what they cover and under what conditions. Inspiring nurses to travel both near and far, Kylee began Passports and Preemies in 2017 while volunteering in Skopje, North Macedonia. I'm here to inspire you to take advantage of your days off from the hospital by traveling to destinations both near and far! Because you’re driving in an unfamiliar country with unfamiliar rules and unfamiliar signs, go slow and stay alert! Always, always, always call ahead to make sure that the car you ordered will be available. Her travel stories have been published in several outlets, and tend to focus on culture, history, nature, art, architecture, and food. What about built-in navigation? Get familiar with local rules, signs, and types of rental cars available before you embark on your journey. If you are not used to driving a standard transmission, the cost may be worth it to avoid additional stress. Automatic transmissions are available, but be prepared to pay significantly more for an automatic vehicle. And it took a couple weeks of of YOUR life??? Sometimes markings on the road identify lanes based which on road you're taking. And that is exactly what I did… but not without a few hiccups along the way. This gives the EU and the UK time to reach an agreement about their future relationship. Find out which one your rental car uses so you select the correct pump when you refuel. The best way to rent a car is with a credit card. Find me on: Web | Twitter | Instagram | Facebook. An IDP is an official translation of your US license (making it easier for the cop to write out a ticket). Apart from the motorways and major arteries, some roads will seem narrow by North American standards. ", At unmarked crossroads or t-junctions, another driver may flash their headlights to indicate that you should proceed first. You when the variable speed limits and distances in England are shown in miles ), I got online rent. Age limits, when they switch from green to red, they turn when! 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