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What Are the Age Requirements for Renting a Car?

How Old Do You Have to Be to Rent a Car?

As a young adult, you can vote, get married, and join the military. If you are over 21, you can even drink alcohol. Still, depending on the state and car rental company, you may not be able to rent a car. 

While it may seem unfair, the reason for these strict rules is clear — young drivers are a lot more likely to get into accidents. Despite making up less than 11 percent of licensed drivers, individuals aged 16 to 24 are drivers in more than 17 percent of fatal crashes. Further, the likelihood for young drivers to be in a collision doesn't decline much until they are nearing 25. 

Thus, it's not surprising that companies are less likely to allow young people to rent vehicles since they pose a greater risk of accidents. Even so, renting a car is not impossible if you are under 25. 

Technically, anyone over 18 can legally rent a car since this is the age you can sign a contract. In fact, the only states that have a mandated legal minimum age for renting a car are: 

  • New York (18 years and over)

  • Michigan (18 years and over)

  • Mississippi (21 years and over)

As you can see, no state requires you to be 25 to rent a car. 

So how old do you have to be to rent a car in other states? It's up to the rental company to determine the minimum age they'll rent to. In the strictest scenario, that's 25. But thankfully, it's more common for companies to let younger drivers rent vehicles as long as they pay an extra fee. 

In this article, we'll acquaint you with the minimum age for renting a car at some of the most popular rental car companies. So, after reading through, you'll have a good idea of which company to use and whether you'll need to pay any additional fees. 



Age Requirements By Rental Company

As mentioned, it's up to rental companies to determine the minimum age for renting a car in most states. Most often, they require drivers to be over 21, but you may be able to find a company that will rent to you if you are at least 18.

It's even more likely that you can get a rental car at a young age if you have exceptional circumstances. For example, some companies make exceptions for government employees or active U.S. military members with government travel or purchase orders. 

Furthermore, if the rental is an insurance replacement, many companies will waive the minimum age requirement even for 18-year-olds.

Other companies are willing to rent to adults of any age, but they charge hefty fees. Although getting an affordable rate may seem like an ordeal, you may be eligible for rental fee discounts as a college student, AAA member, or a driver with USAA Insurance.

If any of these apply to you, it's best to reach out to the rental car company and ask them about special discounts. You may even find that they give you a lower rate for paying in advance with a credit card (not a debit card). And, if you plan on booking with AVR, you may find AVR van rental discount codes



So don't give up on your dream road trip just yet! There are likely a couple of companies in your area willing to rent you a vehicle. 

Instead of calling all the local rental companies, keep reading to discover the age requirements at some of the most popular agencies. 

Airport Van Rental (AVR)

Airport Van Rental has a minimum rental age of 21 unless drivers are USAA Insurance members. In this case, the minimum age is 18, and there's no additional underage rental fee. 

Airport Van Rental also waives this fee for AAA members and lets them add an additional driver for free. Plus, members can get further AAA car rental discounts.

Young drivers who are under 25 and aren't USAA or AAA members must pay a young driver fee, which is about $25 per day. Despite this, AVR is a great option for young people who need rental minivans or SUVs. Unlike many companies, we allow them to rent even larger car classes. 


Enterprise has a car rental age of 21, except in Michigan and New York, where drivers can be as young as 18. However, drivers under 25 are subject to a fee. 

For drivers over 21, this fee tends to be around $20 per day, depending on the vehicle and location. If you are under 20, Enterprise will apply an even higher cost to your rental — about $60 per day in New York! 


Alamo's minimum age requirement policy is similar to that of Enterprise. Unless you are in New York or Michigan, you must be 21 or older to rent a car from Alamo. 

As with other rental companies, your rental will come with an extra fee that varies according to state and the driver's age. Generally, very young drivers in New York and Michigan have to pay a more expensive underage fee. 


Budget is another rental company that requires drivers to be at least 21 unless otherwise directed by law. They have an average young renter fee of about $30 per day, except in states where drivers can be under 21. These drivers are subject to even higher costs ranging anywhere from $40-55 per day. 


Hertz is a great company for young drivers since they only require them to be at least 18 years of age and hold a valid driver's license for over a year. The exception to this is Alabama and Nebraska locations, where renters need to be 19 or older. 

As to be expected, drivers younger than 25 should pay an underage surcharge unless they have a AAA membership. 


With Avis, drivers in all states except Michigan and New York must be 21 to rent a car. Similar to other policies we've seen, the youngest drivers will pay fees of around $50 per day. Meanwhile, drivers between 21 and 25 years old should pay up to $30 per day in underage driver fees. 


Dollar is a little less strict regarding their minimum driving age for rentals and is willing to rent to individuals 20 and over in states where the law doesn't state otherwise. Of course, these young drivers will need to pay a young driver surcharge.

Embark on Your Next Adventure with AVR

Most people believe you need to be 25 to rent a car, but after reading this post, you know that's not true! Many companies will rent compact cars to people as young as 18. 

Other car rental agencies, such as Airport Van Rental, even allow young people to rent full-size cars, such as rental passenger vans. So, if you are at least 21 years old, check out our full-size rental cars online! We'll set you up with the perfect rental vehicle for setting out on your next great adventure from a rental location near you.

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