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Top Rental Car Deals in Edinburgh

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Your Edinburgh Car Hire Guide

Scotland’s capital city is a delight for travellers seeking history, hiking or fun. Edinburgh Castle looms over the city that is comprised of the medieval Old Town and the Georgian New Town.

Rolling hills, including Arthur’s Seat, surround Edinburgh. The city comprises former villages and town, many of which retain their unique character.

The city has gained prominence with the artistic community thanks to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the largest arts festival in the world. Held in August, the festival runs for 25 days and draws performances and visitors from the world over.

Some attractions outside of Edinburgh will give you good cause to hire a car. There’s the historic golf course at St. Andrews, the Highlands, majestic castles, the lochs and the nearby whisky distilleries to draw you away from the city.

Your Scotland Visit Begins with a Car Hire at the Edinburgh Airport

The major car hire brands are all represented at the airport’s car hire area. Due to the volume of visitors, it’s suggested that you make your car reservations ahead of time to make sure you don’t overpay and that you get the vehicle of your choice.

Car hire companies found at Edinburgh Airport include Europcar, Enterprise, National and Hertz. Some of the same brands can be found at Waverley train station and there are many other pick-up locations across the greater Edinburgh area.

Compact cars are more economical and well-suited for driving to and from Edinburgh’s many sights and attractions. They are also ideal for negotiating the narrower streets common in some villages and towns in Scotland. Conversely, you may prefer a larger vehicle such as an SUV if you’re bringing golf clubs or other sporting equipment with you, or if you plan on travelling off the beaten track.

Some car hires do not include unlimited mileage, so it’s important to note the mileage restrictions, particularly if you expect to drive long distances. Similarly, if you prefer an automatic transmission, it’s best to reserve it early.

With a hire car, you will have the freedom and flexibility to experience Edinburgh and its surroundings the way you want to.

Experience Scotland’s Best Attractions

  • Edinburgh Castle – Scotland’s top attraction perches atop Castle Rock offering unbeatable views of the city below.
  • Holyroodhouse Palace – visit the Royal Scottish residence at the foot of Arthur’s Seat and the Augustinian abbey built in 1128.
  • Loch Lomond – celebrated for its beauty and watersports like kayaking, wakeboarding and water skiing, Loch Lomond is a must-see for lovers of the great outdoors.
  • Balmoral Castle – the royal residence in the Highlands remains a private home for the royal family. Visitors can enjoy the gardens and stroll through the exhibitions in the Castle Ballroom when it is not in use.
  • Glasgow – just over an hour’s drive from Edinburgh, Glasgow features some unforgettable sights of its own, including Glasgow Cathedral and the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum.

If you’re concluding your holiday in Glasgow, it is possible to arrange to pick up your hire car in Edinburgh and return it in Glasgow. Some additional charges may apply, but it can be a convenient solution if you're flying home from Glasgow International Airport.

Things to Remember When Driving in Scotland

Speed limits are usually posted in Scotland. Look for circular signs with a red border. These are expressed in miles per hour.

The roads in many of Scotland’s towns and cities were created well before the advent of motor vehicles. As such, they can tend to be very narrow and sometimes difficult to navigate. These roads should be avoided if you are driving a car with a wider berth.

Cars travel on the left side of the road.

Your Edinburgh Car Hire Questions Answered

What is the minimum age requirement?

Any drivers under the age of 25 must have had their full driving licence for at least 2 years with no endorsements, and 25+ for at least 1 year with no endorsements.

What documents do I need for an Edinburgh car hire?

Drivers must have a valid driving licence and the vehicle registration papers with them at all times. They must also carry third-party insurance coverage. If your driving licence doesn’t include a photo, then suitable photo ID is also required.

Can I book a car hire for someone else?

Yes, it is possible to book a car hire for another person, as long as you enter the driver’s full name and age when booking.

FAQs for car hire in Edinburgh

What’s the best price car rental in Edinburgh?

In the past 7 days the lowest priced car rental is £19 in Edinburgh.

What’s the average car rental price in Edinburgh?

On average, car rentals in Edinburgh are £20.

Why should I book a car rental with Expedia?

When booking a rental car via Expedia you can easily compare a wide range of the most popular car hire companies and select the best option for you. There are no extra costs and no cancellation fees involved in booking a rental car with Expedia.

How do I book a car rental with Expedia?

You can book a car rental on Expedia either online or over the phone. You may have the option to reserve now and pay now, or to reserve now and pay later. The payment option will be indicated at time of booking. To collect Expedia+ rewards points for your car rental, sign in to your account before you book or create an account on the Payment page.

Are there any additional costs when cancelling a rental car?

Most rental car bookings are eligible for a full refund regardless of when you cancel with Expedia. Not all prepaid bookings qualify for a refund. Review your itinerary for details. If your prepaid booking qualifies for a refund, your booking must be cancelled at least 6 hours prior to pick-up for the refund. If you return your prepaid car rental early, you will not be refunded for any unused time.

How can I cancel my car booking through Expedia?

To cancel your car booking, sign in or enter your email address and itinerary number. Then select Find itinerary. Under Manage Booking, select Cancel Reservation, then CANCEL THIS RESERVATION. Most prepaid car rental bookings are non-refundable. Pre-paid bookings must be cancelled at least 6 hours prior to pick-up to be eligible for a full refund. To change or cancel a car hire that you booked as part of a holiday, please contact us.

Should I book a rental car online before arriving or directly in Edinburgh?

Booking your car from home with Expedia ensures thay you can choose the type of car. You can also compare the different offers and additional services in advance to get the best offer for you. Upon arrival you only need to collect the keys before beginning your trip. In addition, you do not have to start searching for a suitable provider after arriving or reading the terms and conditions at the counter. This will save you a lot of stress.

What insurance should I choose for my rental car?

A comprehensive insurance is a good choice to avoid unpleasant surprises. That way you can enjoy your stay carefree and explore the area with your rental car.

Do I have to pay my rental car in advance?

We have a couple different options when it comes to paying for your car rental. Read on and see which is best for you. Reserve now, pay now: This option allows you to reserve your car rental and prepay at the time of booking. You’ll need a credit card to prepay, and can apply Expedia Rewards points to cover all or some of the booking cost. While some car rental companies may let you pay with a debit card, the driver still needs to present a valid credit card to cover the deposit upon pick-up. Reserve now, pay later: This option lets you reserve your rental car without paying in advance. When you get to the pick-up spot, just have whoever's driving present a valid credit card to pay the cost in full. The car rental company will also place a hold on your credit card in the amount of the car rental deposit.

What do I have to pay attention to when hiring a car?

When picking up your rental car, check for scratches or dents on the vehicle. Inspect the car carefully, make sure to take notes of potential damage and let the vendor know before driving off.

Where can I find car rentals in Edinburgh?

Rental car companies can usually be found at airports and various locations in the city centre.

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