If you are looking to hire a car at Heathrow Airport, then you have likely found the the many options to be overwhelming. It can be difficult to navigate all the different companies and what they have to offer. Some have different restrictions and fees for young drivers. They have different rules regarding their fuel and insurance. You will also need to know what documentation to bring when you pick up your rental car. This guide will help you understand what important information you need to know before making your booking.
Please be aware that if you are a young driver there may be restrictions limiting you from renting a car. Some provides may only require that you have a minimum age of 21 and have held a license for 3 years. However others require that you be at least 25. If you are thinking of hiring a luxury or prestige car then you may be required to be at least 30 years old to hire the car. Be sure to check with the provider before you commit to renting the car.
You should also be aware that many car hire providers charge drivers aged between 21 and 25 a Young Driver Surcharge (YDS) per rental day. This charge is variable depending on your destination.
When renting a car from Heathrow Airport you will need to present your ID and a valid drivers license when you collect your vehicle. If you are a driver from the UK or Ireland then along with your card license you will need to present your DVLA code. This can be obtained from the website Gov.UK website. Your rental may be cancelled if you were to forget anyone of these. Drivers from outside the UK may drive up to 12 months with a full drivers license.
Before you drive away with your car it’s important to do a thorough check of the vehicle inside and out. Check for scuff marks on the body, damage to trims or wheel rims and burn marks on the upholstery. If you find anything then make it aware to to the hire company. All damage should be noted and signed by both parties. This will provide a guarantee that you will not be charged for any damage caused by previous drivers.
Check with the rental company what their fuel policy is. Full to Full? or Full to Empty? Or Pre paid with a partial refund? You will need to research before you hire the car as to which one they have. Each one has its advantages. The policy will either require that you fill the fuel tank before returning it, leave it empty or they may give a refund for any unused fuel.
One final piece of advice is to check the road laws and regulations on each country that you are planning to drive. For example national speed limits vary from country to country, some speed limits are displayed in miles per hour and some in kilometres. In the U.K the limit is 70mph on dual carriage ways and motorways but can sometimes be variable depending on traffic conditions. It’s also good to note that like in Australia U.K. drivers drive on the left hand side of the road whereas many countries drive on the right.
Car hire providers may sometimes add an airport surcharge. They themselves are being charged by the airport for their location and will usually pass this cost to the customer. This may be a cost that is added to your booking or a charge that you pay at the airport when you collect your car.
One way hire
Some car rental providers offer one way hire. This means that you can take the car from Heathrow airport and leave it at any other destination in the UK or pick up the rental car from where you are and leave the car at the airport. This is a great option if you have a few passengers or lots of luggage. Europcar offer a service called ‘Airport Connect’. The service allows you to book one way hire without an extra cost for the convenience. The prices start from £49.
Open 24 hours 7 days a week
Europcar is an experienced hire car company with over 60 years experience. They aim to provide you with the best vehicle at a low cost.
21 . Drivers between the ages of 21-22 will be charged YDS of around £13 per day.
You can have an additional driver from £4.99 per day, depending on the type of vehicle.
Lynx Hand Controls can be fitted to your vehicle if needed. This service requires 48 hour notice. Please contact the team on 0371 384 3410 to arrange.
Terminals 2/3/4 5am-Midnight
Terminal 5: 6am-11pm
Sixt provides high quality vehicles at all of their locations. At each of their locations they aim to provide their customers with the highest standard of service.
21; Drivers under the age of 25 will be charged an extra YDS charge of £36 per day
An extra driver can be added for a nominal fee. At Heathrow the fee is £12 percent day.
Hand controls can be fitted to vehicles. Please call the team at least 48 hours in advance on 0844 248 6620*
*Calls to this number will cost up to 7p per minute plus your phone’s regular call charge.
24 hrs a day, 7 days a week
Hertz strive to be the most customer service oriented vehicle rental company. They are the largest rental company and have been operating for over 80 years.
Drivers under the age of 25 will be charged YDS, starting at £33.60 per day from Heathrow.
An additional driver has a fee of £13 a day.
The London Heathrow location can fit left handed and right handed controls on their vehicles. Give them a call on 0843 309 3009*, giving them at least 48 hours notice.
*Calls to this number will cost up to 7p per minute plus your phone company’s normal charge.
24hrs, 7 days a week.
You can expect to drive away in a comfortable hire car with Avis. They have many locations throughout the U.K. You can collect your car from Heathrow airport and leave it at any one of their other locations.
23; Drivers under 25 will be charged an extra fee of £37.70 per day (YDS).
You can choose to have an additional driver from £22.40 per rental, per day.
An adapted car can be requested with a minimum of 48 hours notice. Call their reservations team to arrange on 0808 284 0014
The pick up location is found next to Terminal 5. If you are flying to or from Terminal 2/3/4, you can take a shuttle bus to Terminal 5. Or for £19.99 you can benefit from the Fast Track service from T2. Your hire car will be waiting for you at a convenient location.
Terminal 2/3/4: 24 hours a day, Mon-Sun
Terminal 5: 4:45am-Midnight, Mon-Sun
One of the largest companies in the world, Budget look to give you the best value for money.
23; A YDS fee of £32.50 will be charged to those under 25
You can have an additional driver from £12.99 per day, depending on the type of vehicle.
Your hire car can be fitted with hand controls. Call 0344 544 4600 to arrange.
7 days a week
You can hire a vehicle either for business or pleasure with Enterprise. They have a good record of customer service, being voted number one in a national survey of car rental brands 11 times.
For an extra fee of £10 per day you can add an additional driver
Your hire car can be fitted with hand controls. Call 020 8897 2100 to arrange.