Renting a Car in Ireland: A Visitor’s Guide

Renting in Ireland

1. Why Renting a Car in Ireland Is So Awesome?

  • No More Running at the Stations!

You will have to stick to travel and departure times set by bus or train companies if you use public transportation. However, it is not a problem when you rent a car in Ireland. You do not have to stick to any schedules with your rented car, so you can tour the country at your own pace.

  • Stay at Your Favorite Spots for as Long as You Like!

Using public transportation, your time to visit a tourist attraction depends on how long before the next bus/train arrives, but some of the sights in Ireland deserve a little more time. When renting a car in Ireland, you can stay at the tourist attraction for as long as you like – you do not have to worry about missing the next bus into town.

  • Surprise Yourself on the Road!

If you want to view attractions that are off the beaten path, you should consider renting a car in Ireland. The popular spots are already well-known and there are numerous photos and videos on YouTube. However, there are some unique and exciting spots, which can only be reached via a private rental car.

Now, if you have decided to rent a car in Ireland, here is a brief comparison of what it is like to rent a car in Ireland and renting a car in the US.

2. Rental Requirements

  • Age Requirements in Ireland

You only need to be 18 years old to rent a car in the US. In comparison, you must be at least 21 years old to rent a car in Ireland. However, no matter how much experience you have, if you are under 25 years of age, you might have to pay a young driver fee (YDF) or if you are older than 65 years, you might have to pay a senior driver fee or buy extra insurance to cover your driving risks. It is worth noting that each car rental company in Ireland has a unique age requirement policy – a different minimum age to rent each car category.

  • Driving License Requirements in Ireland

To drive in Ireland, the driver must present a valid national driver’s license that has been held for at least 2 years.

Your US driver’s license is enough in both Ireland and Northern Ireland if you want to drive a rental car. For those drivers with a driver’s license written in non-Roman characters, it is required that you bring along an International Driving Permit (IDP) or an official translation (NB: the documents must be valid during your rental period).

Some car rental companies will also require you to provide a photo ID license. If your national driver’s license does not have a photo ID (eg. the UK driver’s license), you should get an IDP if you will be renting a car.

Expert tips: Holders of the UK driver’s license should visit the DVLA site for updates on any changes to the paper counterpart that came into effect from 8th June 2015. When you rent a car in Ireland using a UK license, you have to provide evidence of driving endorsements, except for those with a license from Northern Ireland. The DVLA endorsement record can be found on the DVLA website!

  • Car Rental Deposit in Ireland

Renting a car in the US will cost as little as $100. In Ireland, you need to make a deposit of €800-€3000 and this deposit amount is usually dependent on the car model you pick. Once you return the car, the full amount will be returned to you. It is worth noting that the deposit amount required in Ireland is significantly higher than that required in the US. The main reason for this is that the roads in Ireland are quite narrow. These narrow roads usually mean that the risk of a car returning with a dent due to an accident is quite high. Thus, rental car companies ask for this amount to cover a range of contingent damages that may have incurred on the car during a rental.

It is UBER important to ensure that your credit card has a sufficient credit limit when you renting a car in Ireland. If not, you should consider carrying more than one credit card, which must be under the main driver’s name to cover the deposit amount. Alternatively, if you are traveling as a group, others can use their credit cards to cover the cost of hotels and landmark tickets to save your credit card limit to cover the deposit on the rental car.

3. Car Rental Insurance in Ireland

For US residents, your car insurance company or Credit Card Company may insure you automatically, so you might be able to skip the insurance package when renting in the US. But when renting a car in Ireland, you will get a basic protection package abbreviated as CDW + TP + SLI. To cut costs, it is suggested to call your insurance and credit card company to check if your home insurer or Credit Card Company will cover you when you rent a car in Ireland.

Don’t know what is CDW and TP? Click here!

Don’t know what is SLI? Click here!

To pull you out of the car rental insurance trap, click here to choose your perfect car rental insurance in no time!

4. Locations to Pick up/Drop off Your Rented Car in Ireland (In Alphabetical Order)

If you would like to pick up your rental car at an Irish Airport Cork Airport
Dublin Airport
Donegal Airport
Galway Airport
Knock Airport
Kerry Airport
Shannon Airport
Sligo Airport
Waterford Airport
If you would like to pick up your rental car Downtown in Ireland Cork Downtown
Sligo Downtown
Knock Downtown
Kerry Downtown
Cavan Downtown
Dublin Downtown
Finglas Downtown
Galway Downtown
Loais Downtown
Naas Downtown
Tualee Downtown
Navan Downtown
Athlone Downtown
Killarney Downtown
Kilkenny Downtown
Limerick Downtown
Swords Downtown
Wexford Downtown
Mullingar Downtown
Shannon Downtown
Drogheda Downtown
Waterford Downtown
Skibbereen Downtown
Letterkenny Downtown
Dun Laoghaire Downtown

5. Best Time vs Budget Time to Rent a Car in Ireland

In the US, you can always find a place to visit no matter the season in your area since it is such a huge nation. Besides that, there are always numerous budget locations all year. The best time to visit Ireland is in the summer, which usually starts in June and ends mid-September. During this time, you can attend one of the country’s famed music festivals or a bunch of them. It is also an awesome time to go camping in one of the many caravan parks that dot the Irish countryside. If you want to experience a bit of Ireland’s ancient culture, you should visit the Ring of Kelly. You will find romantic gardens, colorful ancient castles, and much more.

If you are a budget traveler, you can still have a lot of fun during the cold months in Ireland, which are between October and February. During this time, hotel costs and car rental costs are usually low. One of the most spectacular scenes is the Winter solstice at Brú Na Bóinne. Each year a select few get to enter the burial mound to view the 5000-year old spectacle. Besides that, thanks to the clean air, you can travel to various spots on the northern coastline in your rental car to view the Northern Lights.

6. Why Should You Rent a Car with EasyRentCars? Save Time and Money!

  • Best Price Guaranteed – EasyRentCars Saves Your Time!

Spending time to compare all the prices among the car rental websites? Save your time with EasyRentCars. You are assured of the lowest prices when you reserve with us. If you find the same itinerary at a lower price, EasyRentCars will refund you 100% of the difference!

  • Free Cancellation – EasyRentCars Makes You Worry-Free!

Worried that you might be charged a fee or lose all your money if you decided to cancel your booking later because of a change in the itinerary? This not an issue when you rent a car on EasyRentCars! If you cancel before the reserved pickup time, you will get all your money back!

  • Price Drop Protector (PDP) – EasyRentCars Saves Your Money!

Have you already booked your car but you would like to enjoy lower prices later? EasyRentCars comes with the Price Drop Protector feature to help you with this issue. Your itinerary will be immediately be re-booked at the lower price once it is detected, and you will not pay an extra fee to enjoy this service. See how our customers love this feature here!

  • TanTu Offline Map – EasyRentCars Makes You Worry-Free!

Did you just arrive in Ireland but do not yet own a local SIM card to help you access the internet to navigate? You will love the TanTu offline map! This map is content-rich and free. It will help you navigate or the popular and hidden gems in the country. In particular, it is powered by GPS and can be used in more than 200 countries!

Visit now.

EasyRentCars guarantees the most competitive car rental deals for your travel and the secret is our Price Drop Protector program! We can automatically track your rental rates and RE-BOOK you if prices drop! See how our customers love this feature here.

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