Car Rental in Zurich

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Zurich, Switzerland
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500+ Trusted Suppliers:

Cheapest Car Rental Rates

Downtown Car Rental
Volkswagen Polo or similar
Volkswagen Polo
  • 5
  • 2
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Man.
$52.19 per day
Downtown Car Rental
Compact Crossover
Ford Puma or similar
Ford Puma
  • 5
  • 2
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Auto.
$66.52 per day
Zurich Airport Car Rental
Standard SUV
Nissan Qashqai or similar
Nissan Qashqai
  • 5
  • 4
  • 5
  • A/C
  • Auto.
Explore Vacations AG
$67.52 per day
Zurich Train Station Car Rental
Fiat 500 or similar
Fiat 500
  • 4
  • 2
  • 2
  • A/C
  • Man.
$71.24 per day

Most Popular Car Rental Deals

Zurich Airport Car Rental
Compact Elite
Volkswagen ID.3 or similar
Volkswagen ID.3
  • 5
  • 4
  • 5
  • A/C
  • Auto.
$77.54 / per day
Downtown Car Rental
Skoda Octavia or similar
Skoda Octavia
  • 4
  • 2
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Man.
$78.01 / per day
Zurich Letzipark Car Rental
Premium Elite
Renault Grand Scenic or similar
Renault Grand Scenic
  • 5
  • 2
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Auto.
$102.39 / per day
Zurich Airport Car Rental
Intermediate Elite
Skoda Octavia STW or similar
Skoda Octavia STW
  • 5
  • 3
  • 5
  • A/C
  • Auto.
$110.51 / per day
The above prices are only approximate and were last updated at 11:06 on 2023-06-03. Prices may vary based on the booking dates, length of rental, and car class.
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Travel Information

Drive on
Right-hand side
Country code
Average car rental price
$78.24 / per day
Average car rental length
6 days
Speed limit within town
50 km/h
31 mph
Speed limit out of town
80 - 120 km/h
50 - 75 mph
Acceptable limit of BAC
Average gasoline price
$2.30 per liter
Highest gasoline price
$2.64 per liter
Lowest gasoline price
$2.03 per liter

Why rent a car in Zurich?

Zurich is a great city to explore. Sophisticated and well-developed, it is home to well-preserved architecture, varied museums, modern art spaces, and classy restaurants. A lot of smaller, but equally interesting towns are located nearby, as is impressive nature. Traveling by rental car, you can explore Zurich first, then see the rest of Switzerland, perhaps even traveling to the French or Italian-speaking regions or taking a sneak peek at one of Switzerland’s neighboring countries.

Zurich Car Rental

One-Way Car Rentals in Zurich

The most popular one-way rental options for pick up in Zurich and drop off in another city include:

  • From Zurich to Milan - 93 offers from $145.03 per day
  • From Zurich to Geneva - 252 offers from $51.46 per day
  • From Zurich to Venice - 9 offers from $241.15 per day
  • From Zurich to Bologna - 37 offers from $145.03 per day
  • From Zurich to Lugano - 36 offers from $66.55 per day

Top ways to enter Zurich

  • Zurich Airport: The busiest in Switzerland, Zurich Airport handled 31 million travelers in 2018. The airport is a hub for Edelweiss Air and Swiss International Air Lines and is served by around 30 other airlines. In addition to European connections, the airport also has flights to and from destinations in Africa, Asia, and the Americas. Located 11 km (6.8 miles) northeast of the city center, the airport can be reached in about 15 minutes by car.
  • EuroAirport Basel Mulhouse Freiburg: Located in France, but serving locations in three different countries, EuroAirport handled 9 million travelers in 2019. A hub for the low-cost carrier easyJet, it is often the most affordable place to fly to in Switzerland. EuroAirport is divided into French and Swiss sectors - if you plan to pick up your rental car in the French sector, ask your rental car provider in advance if they permit you crossing the border with Switzerland (while both countries are members of the Schengen Area, some rental car providers nonetheless don’t permit or charge an additional fee for crossing the border). Located just northwest of Basel, EuroAirport is 91 km (56.5 miles) from Zurich and can be reached in a little over an hour.
  • Geneva Airport: Serving the largest French-speaking city of Switzerland, Geneva Cointrin Airport handled 17.6 million travelers in 2018. Served by around 30 different airlines, Geneva Airport hosts some flights by low-cost carriers like EasyJet in addition to Swiss International Air Lines. Geneva Airport is 270 km (167 miles) northwest of Zurich and can be reached in about three hours.
  • Milan Malpensa Airport: The busiest airport in northern Italy and second-busiest in all of the country, Milan Malpensa handled 24 million travelers in 2018. The airport has flights by around 40 different airlines with most of the traffic served by ITA Airways, easyJet, Neos, and Ryanair. Located 280 km (174 miles) south of Zurich, Malpensa Airport can be reached in about 3 hours and 20 minutes. If you plan to pick up your rental car in Italy and then travel to Switzerland, ask your rental car provider in advance if they permit crossing the border.
  • Munich Airport: With 48 million travelers served in 2019, Munich Airport is the busiest in Southern Germany, the second-busiest in the country, and the eighth busiest in Europe. The airport is a large hub for Lufthansa but also has flights by low-cost carriers like Eurowings and Norwegian Air and tens of other airlines. Located 340 km (211 miles) southeast of Zurich, Munich Airport can be reached in about 3 hours and 40 minutes. Like with Malpensa, ask your rental car provider in advance if they permit crossing the border with a rental car.
  • By rail: If arriving in Zurich by train, you can pick up your rental car at Zurich Hauptbahnhof or the main train station.

City facts

  • Despite being located quite far from any sea, Zurich has a temperate oceanic climate with humid continental influences. The city has warm summers, cold winters, and four distinct seasons. The average high temperature in Zurich is 24°C  (75°F) in July, the warmest month (with some days significantly warmer), and 3°C  (37°F) in January, the coldest. Summers in the city are quite wet, while winters are drier but experience a lot of snow. Zurich is located at an elevation of 400 - 500 m (1,300 - 1,650 ft); Uetliberg, the mountain overlooking the city, is 870 m (2,850 ft) high.
  • With a GDP per capita of over 70,000 Euros (around 78,000 USD), Greater Zurich is one of the wealthiest regions in Europe, behind only the cities of Luxembourg City in Luxembourg, Dublin in Ireland, Brussels in Belgium, and Hamburg in Germany. The prosperity is reflected in the quality of living as Zurich is frequently voted one of the best places to live in the world. Zurich is also frequently ranked as the most expensive city in Europe, ahead of London, Moscow, and Paris.
  • Although Bern is the capital of Switzerland, Zurich is by far the most populous urban center in the country. The city itself has a population of about 443,000 and a population density of 4,700/km2. The Greater Zurich Area, made up of seven different cantons, has a population of 1.8 million people, meaning that roughly every fifth resident of Switzerland lives in or around Zurich. The city itself is made up of 12 different districts, known as Kreise in German. The residents of Zurich are known as Zurcher (male) and Zurcherin (female).

Top destinations and activities

  • Old Town. Picturesque and well-preserved, visiting Zurich Altstadt is one of the highlights of any trip to the city. The old town is famous as the home of beautiful buildings like St. Peter’s Church, old guild houses, and the University of Zurich, but it is best enjoyed by simply roaming its old narrow streets which seem to have changed very little over the last centuries.
  • Lake Promenade. The long promenade on the northern coast of Lake Zurich is one of the prettiest areas in the city. Lined with trees and passing by many of Zurich’s landmarks, the promenade is the perfect place to go on a long walk or simply enjoy the view. Despite Zurich being very pricey, one of the nicest things to do in the city is absolutely free. 
  • Pavillon Le Corbusier. Located in the Zurichhorn area, the Pavilion is an art museum dedicated to the famous architect who hailed from Switzerland. Known as one of the fathers of modern architecture and urban planning, Le Corbusier created many daring and influential projects, some of which can be seen in the museum. Purpose-built, the museum itself can be seen as a work of art itself.
  • Uetliberg. You can reach this mountain peak by a short 30-minute train ride from Zurich’s city center. At the viewpoint, you’ll be able to enjoy stunning views of Zurich, the lake, and the mountains in the distance. You can also take some time to wander some of the forest paths at the peak, walk down the mountain, or take the cable car back down.

Traffic and parking

  • Switzerland drives on the right-hand side of the road.
  • The speed limit in Switzerland is 100-120 km/h (62-75 mph) on motorways, 80 km/h (50 mph) on all other intercity roads, and 50 km/h (31 mph) inside urban and built-up areas. Switzerland has some of the strictest laws in the world when it comes to speeding - it is considered a legal offense; exceeding the limits very excessively can even lead to prison time.
  • Switzerland is a very mountainous country. While it has some of the best roads in the world, driving remote mountain roads can still be a challenging experience as many are very narrow and steep. If you’re driving an especially narrow road and can’t see around the nearest bend, the law requires you to use a horn in advance. 
  • During the winter months, all cars need to be equipped with winter tires and if the snow is especially strong, using tire chains might also be required. All Swiss rental cars will have winter tires and many will also come with tire chains (though do ask your rental car in advance), but these requirements are important to keep in mind if you’re traveling to Switzerland with a rental car picked up in a neighboring country like Italy, France, or Germany.
  • Many mountain passes are closed during the winter months. It’s a good idea to get an up-to-date GPS system that will notify you which roads are accessible and which are not.
  • It is illegal to use a mobile phone while driving. The law is strictly enforced and the fines are high.
  • The legal alcohol limit is 0.05% for experienced drivers and 0.00% for novice drivers. Exceeding these limits can lead to very steep fines or even imprisonment.
  • The car’s registration and insurance documents must be in it at all times.
  • If you’re the driver, you need to have your passport or ID card with you at all times.
  • Children younger than 12 years of age must have a child seat. Ask your rental car provider about the availability of one if you will be traveling with a young child.
  • The general emergency number in Switzerland, like in the European Union, is 112. You can also call 117 for police, 118 for the fire brigade, and 144 for an ambulance.

Toll roads

Switzerland does not have toll roads as in some other European countries. Instead, a vignette is required to use the motorways of the country. If renting a car in Switzerland, the vignette should already be on the car when you receive it. However, if you rent a car in neighboring France, Italy, Germany or Austria, you will need to purchase a vignette when entering Switzerland (i.e., near the customs checkpoint). Unfortunately, there is only one type of vignette offered, one lasting the entire year (valid until January 31 of next year). This has the unfortunate effect of costing the traveler more than residents on a per-day basis. The cost of the vignette is currently 40 CHF. 

While there are no toll roads, there are two tunnels that are tolled. These are the Grand St. Bernhard Tunnel spout of Lake Geneva near the border with Italy and the Munt la Schera near the Italian border in the far east of the country. 

There are also five toll tunnels where vehicles are transported by train. The nearest to Zurich is the Oberalp Pass, about 120 km (75 miles) south of the city.

Learn more about the highway vignette system in Switzerland on the official Swiss Customs Administration website and the European toll road website

Ideas for day trips

  • Baden. A pretty little town near the border with Germany, Baden is famous the Stein Castle, the Children’s Museum, and an old, reconstructed wood bridge. The word ‘Baden’ literally means ‘baths’ in archaic German, and travelers love visiting the town's many spas and thermal springs which have attracted foreign visitors since Roman times. Located 23 km (14 miles) northwest of Zurich, Baden can be reached in about 25 minutes.
  • Zurich Wilderness Park. A large, forested territory made up of two joined nature preserves, the wilderness park is home to many native animal species like brown bears, elk grey wolves, and European bison. There are also many hiking trails and picnic spots, making it one of the nicest green areas in the vicinity of Zurich. Located just 13 km (8 miles) south of the city, the park can be reached in about 20 minutes by car.
  • Winterthur. A medium-sized city, Winterthur is best known for its historical architecture. But the city also has a whopping 17 museums, with the Oskar Reinhart Collection, an art museum, and Technorama - Swiss Science Center being the standouts. Located just 24 km (15 miles) northeast of Zurich, Winterthur takes 30 minutes to reach, making it an ideal spot even if you only have one day in Zurich

Most popular cars

The most popular rental car in Zurich is the Volkswagen Polo, followed by the Volkswagen Golf and the Ford Focus. The most popular rental car types are economy, mini, and compact.

Further destinations

  • Basel. Located right on the border with Germany and France, Switzerland’s third city is a great place to explore. Travelers love it for impressive churches like Basel Munster and Elisabethenkirche, sophisticated museums, and unique festivals. Located 87 km (54 miles) northwest of Zurich, Basel can be reached in about 1 hour and 15 minutes. From here, you can easily visit Alsace in France and the Black Forest in Germany, though you should ask your rental car provider in advance to find out if they permit it.
  • Ticino. Even in a country like Switzerland, the region of Ticino stands out for its natural beauty. Primarily Italian-speaking, it is home to alpine lake beaches, snow-capped peaks, and long, green valleys. Ticino’s little towns, including Locarno, Bellinzona, and Lugano, are also very much worth a visit. The latter, 207 km (128 miles) northeast of Zurich, can be reached in about 2 hours and 40 minutes.
  • Lucerne. A nice city in Central Switzerland, Lucerne offers many experiences dedicated to the surrounding Alps. These include the Glacier Garden, Alpineum (a museum and diorama), and surrounding mountains like Titlis, Pilatus, and Rigi that you can climb. Among the other attractions of the city are the Rosengart Collection which has artworks by Picasso, Cezanne, and Chagal, and the Chapel Bridge. Located 52 km (32 miles) south of Zurich, Lucerne can be reached in about 45 minutes.
  • Interlaken. Gorgeous in both winter and summer, there are so many things to do in Interlaken. Enjoy kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, and swimming in Lake Brienz or Lake Thun. Take a beautiful hike on a mountain trail such as Rugen trail or Harder Kulm. You can also combine your Interlaken trip with some time in Grindelwald, known for its hiking, viewpoints, cute village, and breathtaking mountain views. From Zurich, you can reach Interlaken in about 1 hour and 45 minutes.

Car Rental Prices in Zurich

  • Convertibles - from $144 per day
  • Station wagons - from $74 per day
  • Large cars - from $78 per day
  • Medium cars - from $67 per day
  • Vans - from $174 per day
  • Premium cars - from $102 per day
  • Small cars - from $52 per day
  • SUVs - from $66 per day

Money-saving tips

Try these simple tips to get a great rental car in Zurich:

  • Compare the 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 during the month when the rental prices are the cheapest. According to our data, visiting Zurich is the cheapest in April when renting a car is about 41% cheaper than the yearly average.
This information was written, fact-checked, and/or translated by our content creators. Learn more about our Editorial Policy.
Fact checked by:
Megan Starr & Aram Vardanyan
Megan & Aram is a travel blog run by two friends that have been helping people travel the world since 2010. They have visited well over 100 countries together and share a special passion for lesser-known destinations, as well as the Nordics. Megan is currently based in Germany and Aram is based in Armenia. They run 4 destination-specific websites in addition to Megan & Aram.

What travel writers say

Zurich is Switzerland’s largest city, and it’s a great place to visit to see both cultures and scenery. You can explore the historic, medieval streets of the Old Town, sample Swiss chocolate firsthand and gaze out over the beautiful shores of Lake Zurich. From the city, you are within easy reach of some of Switzerland’s most dramatic natural sights, from alpine lakes to high mountain peaks.
David & Lina Stock
We are David & Lina Stock, a married couple from NW Wisconsin who have been traveling together since 2001. We’ve visited nearly 100 countries on all 7 continents.
Explore the old town. We could go on and on about which streets to wander down and which corners to peek around - but that would ruin the surprise for you! Instead, give yourself a few hours, leave the map at home, and lose yourself in the winding cobblestoned streets of Zürich’s medieval old town. This is living history at its best.
Mark & Mim
The Common Wanderer is an award-winning responsible travel blog for travellers seeking authentic, real life experiences in exciting destinations all over the world.
I’m not much for cities usually when I’m traveling (Berlin being a rare exception). So the fact that moments after I stepped foot off the train in Zurich I wanted to move there says volumes. I don’t know what it is precisely, but Zurich is intoxicating. It’s got all the best parts of Switzerland—the clean air, pristine streets, amazing food, kind people, German efficiency and panoramic views of the Alps, which encase it—wrapped up in a neat little cosmopolitan city package. And there were some really cool parts to it, too. Like the program where you can “rent” a bike—for free—on any given day. You simply have to leave behind 20 francs and your passport, both of which you’ll get back when you return the vehicle. And that you can drink straight out of any of the 1,200 fountains around the city. In fact, it’s encouraged. And the whole city is just so…green. I wanted to make like a dog and roll in the grass everywhere we visited.
Kristin Luna
I’m Kristin Luna, journalist by profession, Southerner by birth, woman behind the blog.

Top 15 Cities near Zurich

  1. Lucerne Car Rentals from $77.98 per day
    49.6 km / 30.8 miles away
  2. 59.8 km / 37.2 miles away
  3. Altenrhein Car Rentals from $106.53 per day
    76.1 km / 47.3 miles away
  4. Basel Car Rentals from $67.41 per day
    78.3 km / 48.7 miles away
  5. Chur Car Rentals from $67.83 per day
    100.1 km / 62.2 miles away
  6. Interlaken Car Rentals from $94.70 per day
    101.3 km / 62.9 miles away
  7. Bern Car Rentals from $34.84 per day
    102.0 km / 63.4 miles away
  8. Thun Car Rentals from $73.53 per day
    106.8 km / 66.4 miles away
  9. 145.6 km / 90.5 miles away
  10. Bellinzona Car Rentals from $73.53 per day
    145.8 km / 90.6 miles away
  11. Gstaad Car Rentals from $112.31 per day
    146.1 km / 90.8 miles away
  12. Lugano Car Rentals from $73.53 per day
    164.4 km / 102.2 miles away
  13. 166.1 km / 103.2 miles away
  14. Sion Car Rentals from $86.17 per day
    166.8 km / 103.6 miles away
  15. Geneva Car Rentals from $64.65 per day
    230.3 km / 143.1 miles away

Top 8 Locations near Zurich

  1. Zurich Airport Car Rentals from $65.87 per day
  2. 6.9 km / 4.3 miles away
  3. 76.1 km / 47.3 miles away
  4. Basel Airport Car Rentals from $67.41 per day
    78.3 km / 48.7 miles away
  5. Bern Airport Car Rentals from $113.10 per day
    100.3 km / 62.3 miles away
  6. Downtown Car Rentals from $66.96 per day
    229.8 km / 142.8 miles away
  7. 230.1 km / 143.0 miles away
  8. Geneva Airport Car Rentals from $64.65 per day
    230.3 km / 143.1 miles away

Map of Car Rental Locations

What is the cheapest month to rent a car in Zurich?

Car rental prices in Zurich vary by time of year. This graph shows the average prices per month to help you find the best time of year to rent.
Average rental costs per day in Zurich
The cheapest month to rent a car in Zurich is November (when prices average $65.18 per day). This is 34% cheaper than the yearly average and 64% cheaper than renting in July (when prices average $180.45).

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 usual rental length in Zurich?

How long travelers keep their rental cars for varies from month to month: in July, the average renter keeps their car for 8 days, and in March, they keep their car for 5 days.
Average rental length in Zurich

What's the most popular month to rent a car in Zurich?

Based on the number of searches by our customers, the most popular month for renting a car in Zurich is May, and the least popular is November.
Monthly searches in Zurich by pick-up date relative to the average

Car Rental Information

Car rental locations 6
Airport locations 1
Popular suppliers Alamo, Explore Vacations AG, Hertz, Enterprise, Europcar
Popular car categories Small cars, SUVs, Medium cars, Vans
Lowest price $52 per day
Cheapest supplier Alamo

Most Popular Car Models of Rental Suppliers

Rental Supplier Model Doors Luggage Type
Hertz Citroen C3 5 2 Small cars
Alamo Volkswagen Polo 4 2 Small cars
Alamo Opel Mokka 5 2 SUVs
Alamo Volkswagen Polo 4 2 Small cars
Alamo Ford Puma 4 2 SUVs
Hertz Volkswagen Polo 4 2 Small cars
Alamo Renault Captur 5 2 SUVs
Explore Vacations AG Volkswagen Golf 5 2 Medium cars
Europcar Volkswagen T-Roc 5 3 SUVs
Europcar Volkswagen Touran 5 2 Vans

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.

United Arab Emirates
BMW 3 Series Touring
April 4, 2023
No thanks
Ford Focus
September 9, 2022
Switzerland is a wonderful country
Fiat 500
January 4, 2022
Really good and simple. Best service and greats cars. Can't found better than this Enterprise 10 to 10!
United Kingdom
Volvo V40
September 15, 2019
Zrh easy to rent. Parking right behind counters. Easy in/out.
United Kingdom
Mazda 6 Sport Kombi
February 13, 2019
Expensive and not really worth it unless you can't get to your destination by public transport.
VW Golf
October 31, 2018
Zurich is the best!

Car Rental Statistics

Highest rated company
9.3 / 10
Lowest rated company
Explore Vacations AG
8.1 / 10
Total number of reviews
Total rental companies
Average daily price
Lowest daily price
Total cars available

Top 12 Suppliers in Zurich in 2023

Exceptional 9.3 / 57 reviews
1 location
$78 - $272
Exceptional 9.3 / 52 reviews
3 locations
Exceptional 9.1 / 66 reviews
2 locations
$74 - $370
Exceptional 9.1 / 63 reviews
2 locations
$53 - $109
Exceptional 9 / 193 reviews
2 locations
$52 - $108
Excellent 8.9 / 35 reviews
4 locations
$71 - $119
Excellent 8.6 / 3 reviews
1 location
Excellent 8.6 / 6 reviews
2 locations
$53 - $111
Excellent 8.5 / 5 reviews
4 locations
$68 - $233
Excellent 8.5 / 2 reviews
4 locations
$70 - $118
Excellent 8.4
1 location
Explore Vacations AG
Explore Vacations AG
Excellent 8.1 / 36 reviews
1 location
$66 - $455
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