Car Rental in New Zealand
Cheapest Car Rental Rates
Most Popular Car Rental Deals
Why rent a car in New Zealand?
New Zealand is a great place to explore by car. Not only both North Island and South Island are full of cozy cities and stunning natural landmarks, but the highways themselves are an adventure as they offer some of the most picturesque driving routes in the whole world. Find out more about some of these scenic routes on the South Island.
If you want to know more about renting a car in New Zealand, don't miss our complete guide.
Top ways to enter New Zealand
- Auckland Airport: The busiest in New Zealand, Auckland Airport serves its largest city. A port of entry for a very large number of foreign visitors, the airport has flights to and from such faraway destinations as China, Qatar, Chile, and the United States.
- Christchurch Airport: Serving the city of the same name, this is the main airport on the South Island. In addition to domestic connections, the airport also has flights to and from Sydney, Melbourne, Singapore, Dubai, Los Angeles, and other destinations.
- Queenstown Airport: Serving the popular adventure sports destination, Queenstown Airport handles close to five million passengers annually and provides connections with domestic destinations, as well as the largest cities in Australia.
- Wellington Airport: Serving the national capital near the southern tip of the North Island, Wellington Airport has flights by more than 10 airlines, connecting the city with Australia, Fiji, and many local destinations.
Top cities and places to visit
- Auckland. By far the largest city in the country, Auckland is also New Zealand’s main arts and entertainment hub. In addition to a lively cultural and nightlife scene, the city’s landmarks include the Auckland Art Gallery, Kelly Tarlton’s Sea Life Aquarium, and the Stardome Observatory which shares its location with archaeological Māori sites.
- Queenstown. Sometimes called the adrenaline capital of the world, Queenstown is the best place from which to dive right into the great Kiwi outdoors. Situated between the eastern coast of Lake Wakatipu and some truly spectacular mountains, it offers some of the best snowboarding, bungy jumping, and paragliding in the world.
- Aoraki Mount Cook National Park. Situated around New Zealand’s highest peak and the rest of the Southern Alps, this spectacular national park has some of the most scenic drives in the country, as well as a vast network of hiking trails for everyone from beginners to seasoned hikers and climbers. Both Queenstown and Christchurch are about a four-hour drive away.
- Fiordland National Park. With glacier-carved fjords, enchanted forests, and snowcapped mountains, Fiordland National Park is one of the most beautiful and most visited areas in New Zealand, with Milford Sound leading as the most popular destination.
- Westland Tai Poutini National Park. Situated on the West Coast of New Zealand’s South Island, the wetland Tai Poutini National Park is most renowned for its two glaciers: Franz Josef and Fox.
Most popular rental car
The most popular rental car in New Zealand is the Nissan Tiida 2009, followed by the Toyota RAV4 and the Fiat Punto.
Driver's license requirements
- New Zealand recognizes valid foreign driver’s licenses from around the world if they are printed in a Latin alphabet and if you’re visiting on a trip that’s shorter than 12 months. If you’re residing in New Zealand permanently, you need to obtain a local driver’s license.
- If your driver’s license is printed in another alphabet (Cyrillic, Arabic, etc.), you’ll need an International Driving Permit (IDP).
- Similarly, if your driver’s license doesn’t show your photograph, you might be required to have an IDP.
- Even if you have an IDP, you need to also carry your original driver’s license as you might be asked to show both.
- You must carry your driver’s license, not a copy, with you at all times.
- You need to have had your driver’s license for at least two years.
- Some rental car providers charge a young driver fee for drivers between the ages of 22 and 25 and a senior driver fee for drivers over the age of 65.
- There may be additional requirements depending on the car provider and car category, so make sure to check the rental conditions before booking.
Most popular types of rental car
Many visitors of New Zealand choose compact and economy rental cars, but fullsize is also very popular, especially among travelers who like to go higher in the mountains and away from the main road network.
Top driving routes
Here are just some of the top driving routes. Find more routes and full itineraries in this guide to New Zealand road trips.
- The Coromandel Peninsula. A large and distinct region of the North Island, the Coromandel Peninsula is a fun place to explore, especially with your own ride. In addition to a beautiful coastline and many cozy beach towns, the area is also known for its thermal springs, the Cathedral Cove Marine Reserve, and Coromandel Forest Park. The drive from Auckland takes only about two hours.
- Christchurch. Continuing to recover from the 2011 earthquake, Christchurch (or Ōtautahi) is one of the nicest and most atmospheric places in New Zealand. The city is known for its well-preserved architecture and many notable buildings, cultural institutions like the Air Force Museum, and many gardens and public green spaces. A gateway to the South Pole, Christchurch is also home to the impressive International Arctic Center where visitors are made to feel like they are a part of a polar expedition.
- Southland. Vast, very sparsely populated, and dramatically beautiful, the southern part of New Zealand is the right place for an off-the-beaten-path road trip. The region is notable for its glaciers, fjords, and highland lakes; the southernmost city in Oceania, Invercargill; and distinct culture and cuisine that’s centered around oysters. Southland is also great for seeing Aurora Australis, or Southern Lights (the best season is the coldest time of the year, roughly from April to September). Invercargill is only a two-hour trip south of Queenstown and a tad farther from Dunedin.
Car Rental Prices
- Station wagons - from $21 per day
- Large cars - from $12 per day
- Medium cars - from $10 per day
- Vans - from $26 per day
- Premium cars - from $46 per day
- Small cars - from $10 per day
- SUVs - from $23 per day
How can I save money on my rental car?
You can do a number of things to get a good car rental deal in New Zealand:
- Compare rates of different rental car providers
- Book your rental car well in advance
- Plan your route before you go
- Know your fuel and mileage requirements
- Visit on the month when the rental prices are the cheapest. According to our data, visiting New Zealand is the cheapest in July when renting a car is about 31% cheaper than the yearly average and about 44% cheaper than visiting in February when it’s the height of summer in the southern hemisphere.
Top 20 Most Popular Cities in New Zealand
Car Rental in Auckland from $13.83 per day
Car Rental in Queenstown from $9.62 per day
Car Rental in Christchurch from $9.81 per day
Car Rental in Wellington from $19.13 per day
Car Rental in Nelson from $31.18 per day
Car Rental in Dunedin from $35.12 per day
Car Rental in Napier from $53.76 per day
Car Rental in Palmerston North from $34.82 per day
Car Rental in Rotorua from $38.81 per day
Car Rental in Tauranga from $38.81 per day
Car Rental in Picton from $34.68 per day
Car Rental in Invercargill from $44.17 per day
Car Rental in Blenheim from $34.59 per day
Car Rental in Gisborne from $36.69 per day
Car Rental in New Plymouth from $34.82 per day
Car Rental in Kerikeri from $48.84 per day
Car Rental in Whangarei from $48.84 per day
Car Rental in Waiheke Island from $47.93 per day
Car Rental in Taupo from $43.23 per day
Car Rental in Whanganui from $96.42 per day
Top 20 Most Popular Locations in New Zealand
Car Rental at Queenstown Airport from $9.62 per day
Car Rental at Auckland Airport from $13.83 per day
Car Rental at Christchurch Airport from $9.81 per day
Car Rental at Wellington Airport from $23.12 per day
Car Rental in Auckland (Downtown) from $19.13 per day
Car Rental at Nelson Airport from $31.18 per day
Car Rental at Dunedin Airport from $35.12 per day
Car Rental at Napier Airport from $53.76 per day
Car Rental at Palmerston North Airport from $34.82 per day
Car Rental in Christchurch (Downtown) from $19.13 per day
Car Rental at Rotorua Airport from $38.81 per day
Car Rental in Wellington (Downtown) from $19.13 per day
Car Rental at Invercargill Airport from $44.17 per day
Car Rental at Wellington Inter Island Ferry Terminal from $35.40 per day
Car Rental at Tauranga Airport from $38.81 per day
Car Rental in Auckland Mount Wellington from $20.70 per day
Car Rental in Auckland Onehunga from $19.13 per day
Car Rental at New Plymouth Airport from $34.82 per day
Car Rental in Auckland Henderson from $19.13 per day
Car Rental in Auckland Glenfield from $19.13 per day
Map of Car Rental Locations
What is the cheapest month to rent a car in New Zealand?
This information can help you identify the low season. But these are only average numbers. How much your car rental will cost will depend on the type of vehicle you rent, how long you’ll rent it for, and how far ahead you book. Simply enter your dates in the form at the top of the page to see the exact prices.
What’s the average rental length in New Zealand?
What's the most popular month to rent a car in New Zealand?
Car Rental Information
|Car rental locations||57|
|Popular suppliers||Yes Rentals, Ezu Car Rental, Mode Car Rentals, Discount Car Rentals New Zealand, Snap Rentals|
|Popular car categories||SUVs, Small cars, Medium cars, Large cars|
|Lowest price||$10 per day|
|Cheapest supplier||Yes Rentals|
Most Popular Car Models of Rental Suppliers
|Autounion||Toyota Aqua Hybrid||5||2||Medium cars|
|Hertz||Hyundai i30||5||2||Medium cars|
|Discount Car Rentals New Zealand||Toyota Corolla||4||2||Large cars|
|Yes Rentals||Toyota Corolla||5||2||Small cars|
|Discount Car Rentals New Zealand||Toyota RAV4||5||2||SUVs|
|Yes Rentals||Toyota Aqua Hybrid||5||1||Medium cars|
|Discount Car Rentals New Zealand||Toyota Yaris||5||2||Small cars|
|Jucy||Suzuki Swift||5||1||Small cars|
|Bargain Rental Cars||Toyota Vitz||5||1||Medium cars|
|Ezu Car Rental||Toyota Yaris 2013||4||1||Small cars|
Our Customers' Reviews
Because we want to make sure each review listed here is left by a real customer, we don’t have an option to post a review here. Instead, we ask each and every customer to leave a review after they return their rental car. This way, you know that all reviews are authentic, verified, and trustworthy.