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Why rent a car in Düsseldorf?

Düsseldorf, a city in the North Rhine-Westphalia region of western Germany, is an international business and financial centre, also renowned for its fashion industry, trade fairs and carnival. Könnigsallee, the Kö, is a high-end fashion shopper’s paradise, and the beautiful Altstadt (Old Town) is bursting with not only museums and art galleries but also restaurants and pubs, where you can drink Altbeer, its local beer. The Rheinuferpromenade (Rhein embankment promenade), links it to Medienhafen (Media Harbour), an entertainment district with amazing samples of modern architecture designed by star architects.

A rental car in Düsseldorf is the ideal way to explore some of the key cities in North Rhine-Westphalia. Köln (Cologne), with its famous cathedral, is 45 minutes southeast. A further 40 minutes on the road takes you to the university town of Bonn, where Beethoven was born. Wuppertal, known for its suspended monorail system, the Schwebebahn, and for the modern dance troupe Tanztheater Pina Bausch, is 40 minutes to the east. Europe’s largest inland port is in Duisburg, a half-hour drive north, where there is a museum called Museum der Deutschen Binnenschifffahrt (German Inland Waterways Museum), dedicated to inland waterway transport, without which the Ruhr area would not have grown to the size it is today.

How to get to and around Düsseldorf?

Düsseldorf International Airport is five miles and a half north of Düsseldorf. From the airport’s railway station, Düsseldorf Flughafen, you can take the SkyTrain monorail into the centre, or the S-Bahn S11, which departs every 20 minutes and reaches Düsseldorf Hauptbanhof (Düsseldorf Central Station), in 12 minutes.

With a cheap car hire at Düsseldorf Airport the city centre is reachable in 15 minutes, and you don’t need to carry any luggage around.

Hiring a car in Düsseldorf city centre

Car hire in Düsseldorf couldn’t be easier. You can rent a vehicle from the airport’s information desk or from one of many pick-up points in the city.

Luckily, driving in Düsseldorf is easy except for the Altstadt area, due to its narrow streets. Within the city the speed limit is 31mph. Police regulation is strict, so stay safe and drive slowly.

There are many boutique hotels in Düsseldorf to choose from. One fashionable, contemporary hotel to be considered in Victoriaplatz, just north of the Altstadt, is the Hotel Indigo Düsseldorf, which has individually decorated rooms accented by bright colours and large-scale fashion photos, and a purple mannequin seated in the lobby.

What brands are available?

The range of car hire brands available at Düsseldorf International Airport is wide. Check the Expedia car hire tool to find the hire car in Düsseldorf that best suits your needs.

  • Alamo
  • Avis
  • Buchbinder Germany
  • Budget
  • Dollar
  • Enterprise
  • Europcar
  • Global Rent a Car
  • Hertz
  • Interrent EU
  • Keddy By Europcar
  • National
  • Sixt
  • Thrifty EU
  • Must-sees within an easy drive of Düsseldorf

    Bonn, the birthplace of Ludwig van Beethoven, is an hour south of Düsseldorf. Two main attractions there are the Beethoven House and the Poppelsdorf Palace, a Baroque palace set in a botanical garden.

    The spa town of Aachen is about an hour and 10 minutes southwest. Because of its hot springs, it was the favourite winter residence of Charlemagne, or Charles the Great, who is buried in the octagonal Palatine Chapel in Aachen Cathedral. The chapel is designated as a Unesco World Heritage Site.

    Heidelberg’s magnificent landmark castle, Heidelberger Schloss, is one of the most important Renaissance buildings north of the Alps, and can be reached in under three hours southeast.

    Tips and tricks for driving in Germany

    You must be over 18 to drive in Germany and hold a full driving licence. Licences issued in EU or EEA countries are accepted. Carry your driver’s licence, ID (passport) and proof of insurance at all times.

    Carrying a warning triangle and headlamp beam deflectors in the vehicle is compulsory. It is recommended you also carry a first aid kit. It is illegal in Germany to use speed camera detectors, including a GPS device. The speed limit in built-up areas is 62 mph, but there is no speed limit on autobahns.

    In Düsseldorf avoid driving in or near the Old Town, as its narrow alleyways, cobbled roads, low parking availability and vehicle restriction zones make it highly challenging. Outside this area, its an easy city to drive in compared to other large German cities.

    Ready to plan your Düsseldorf city break?

    Feeling inspired to start planning your trip to Düsseldorf and other parts of Germany? Use this city guide and the Expedia search tool to find the best car hire, flight and hotel deals and research your preferred attractions and activities.