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Picking up a rental car in Australia

Picking up rental car

You’ve booked your rental car, and now comes the time to pick the vehicle up from the depot. VroomVroomVroom has put together a guide to help navigate you the process of picking up your rental car to make it as easy and straightforward as possible.

What documents do I need to rent a car?

When you pick up a rental car in Australia, you will need to bring your identification documents with you. You will need to present your driver’s licence, and a valid credit card in the name of the lead driver. In some cases debit cards are accepted, but restrictions will apply. If your driving licence is not printed in English, then you will need to have an International Driving Permit.

Read more about required documents.

Can I pay cash?

This may be possible. Unfortunately, at VroomVroomvroom, all of our suppliers require a credit card for pick up and only a few major locations take cash on the return of the vehicle. Suppliers like Hertz, Avis and Enterprise, may approve a cash rental only if you meet their very stringent requirements.

Read more about cash payment.

Will the car have fuel in it when I collect it?

Yes. When you pick up your hire car from the rental company it will usually have a full tank of fuel. Unless you have made prior arrangements with the car rental company, you will also be required to return the vehicle with a full tank of fuel. You can arrange with the car rental company to pre-purchase fuel, though keep in mind that you will have to pay an extra charge at the rental counter for this.

Read more about fuel policy here.

What should I do if I’m offered a rental car upgrade?

A car rental upgrade usually means that you’ll be able to drive a vehicle that’s more sophisticated and more spacious than what you originally booked. Before agreeing to get an upgrade, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. These include the overall price of your rental, extra fuel costs, insurance coverage, awareness of the location, and difficulty in driving.

Read more about car upgrade.

Do I need to purchase excess reduction?

Purchasing Rental Vehicle Excess Insurance or Collision Damage Waiver from an insurance company or car rental supplier is entirely your choice. It is not compulsory in Australia. When you rent a car in Australia, the vehicle will have a capped excess amount. The amount depends on which company you are hiring the car from, and the type of vehicle you will be driving.

Check out a few features of travel insurance and excess reduction products here.

What if I find a scratch or dent in my rental car?

It is important that you check your rental car for any additional damage before you leave the depot. You will receive a report showing any existing damage on the rental car, and you can inform a representative if you find any extra damage and it is a good idea to take photos of the car as well in case there are any disputes regarding damage to it. Before you leave the depot after returning the car, you will need to check your hire car for damage. 

Read more about the process of checking for damage.

What else do I need to know when picking up at the airport?

Some different rules may apply if you need to pick up your car at the airport. For example, you may have to pay a premium location surcharge. You will also need to provide your flight details before you arrive, in case there are any flight delays. Usually, rental car service desks are located within the terminal, but if they are located away from the main terminal building, in some cases the car rental companies will offer a complimentary shuttle service between their depot and the terminal.

Read our guide to picking up a rental car from the airport.

Learn more about how to pick up a rental car in Australia with VroomVroomVroom


When you pick up your rental car

Before you arrive to pick up your rental car make sure you have your driving licence, an International Driving Permit (if required) and a credit card in the driver’s name. Whether you are using an existing travel insurance policy, or excess reduction products, it is important to make sure you are familiar with the terms and conditions. Before you leave the depot, carefully check the rental car for damage and it is advisable to take photos of any pre-existing damage to the vehicle.