One of the most popular places to visit in Europe, Germany is a hot destination for many reasons.
It’s why we’ve driven through it multiple times over recent years, both in summer and winter.
Here you can explore many incredible castles, whilst learning more about the country’s historical roots in both the big cities and rural towns.
The culture in Germany is well and truly alive too, where you can enjoy everything from festivals like Oktoberfest to some of Europe’s best Christmas markets!
But one of the biggest decisions you’ll make before heading to Germany is how you’ll get around.
Whilst many tourists choose to use buses or trains, we have personally found that driving is a better option.
Not only can you travel around on your own schedule as you wish, you can also find some great car rental deals too (which we’ll share in this article).
In this comprehensive article we’ll explore the best car rental companies in Germany.
This includes the advantages of each one, as well as the different models available for your trip.
Let’s get into it…
Once you’ve got your heart set on exploring Germany independently, it’s now time to find the perfect rental company and vehicle for your road trip.
DiscoverCars is one of the best online car comparison sites, and we highly recommend using it to find your own rental vehicles.
Usually browsing rentals can be quite a frustrating and time-consuming process, however DiscoverCars have an awesome search function (as well as a large variety of companies) which makes it much easier to find the right match for you.
Here are some of the other advantages of using DiscoverCars:
We start off this list with Enterprise, who are one of the world’s most recognised car rental companies. Founded in the USA over 60 years ago, they’re known for their reputability and have a large range of vehicle fleets here in Germany.
It’s worth looking into their loyalty program, where you can earn up to 20% bonus points (which can be redeemed with future Enterprise car rentals).
Enterprise are also located all over Germany, which is perfect if you plan on heading to places like Nuremberg for their notorious Christmas Markets.
We begin with Enterprise’s most affordable Mini and Economy models (usual rentals include a Toyota Aygo, Opel Corsa or similar).
Next we have their Standard and Intermediate vehicles which are a nice mix between comfort and cost (you’ll get a Volkswagen Passat, Skoda Octavia STW or similar).
Finally we have their luxurious tiers which include the Full-Size, Premium SUVs and Premium models (you’ll get a BMW 3 Series, Volkswagen Touareg, Audi A6 or similar).
Enterprise also does Luxury Van Rentals too which are ideal for bigger parties.
With over two decades of experience, OK Mobility has made its way into the wider European market and is now a top choice for travelers heading to Germany.
They offer a variety of perks and benefits, such as 10% off vehicle hire (as well as an additional driver for free) when booking through their app.
As such, they undoubtedly offer some of the best car rentals in Germany!
Firstly we have their Mini and Economy models, which are best for those traveling light or looking to keep costs low (you’ll get a Fiat 500, Peugeot 108 or similar).
Next we have their mid-tier vehicles which include their Standard Crossover and Premium models (usual vehicle rentals include a Peugeot 3008, BMW 1 Series or similar).
At the more luxurious end of things, we have their Intermediate Elite SUVs and Compact Convertible models which are best for those after the smoothest ride possible (you’ll get a Citroen DS7, Opel Cascada Cabrio or similar).
Not only do they have a large fleet of vehicles available, they also have no hidden costs (which can sometimes be an issue with other rentals).
Their introductory models include the Compact and Standard classes (usual rentals include a VW T-Cross, Tesla Model 3 Long Range or similar).
Next we have their Compact SUV, Intermediate and Premium models, which feel more luxurious without actually costing that much more (you’ll get a VW T-Roc, BMW 2 Series Active Tourer, Mercedes-Benz E Class or similar).
Finally we have their Special and Luxury Convertible classes (rental vehicles are usually a BMW 7 Series, BMW 4 Series Convertible or similar).
SIXT also provides Full-Size van rentals too.
With over 70 years experience in the car rental market, Europcar is now a leading rental company in Europe. Not only are they highly reputable, they also have a large fleet too.
Regular users can really benefit from signing up to their Privilege Loyalty Program, where you can receive perks such as free weekend rentals.
Firstly we have Europcar’s introductory models which include the Mini, Economy and Compact classes (usual rentals include a Hyundai i10, Renault Zoe, Cupra Born or similar).
Next we have their Standard and Intermediate classes which are perfect for an upgrade without breaking the bank (you’ll get a Volkswagen Passat STW, Opel Insignia STW or similar).
Those after more classes will want to choose from their Luxury, Luxury SUVs and Premium SUV models (usual rentals include a Mercedes Benz E Class STW, Audi Q8 E-Tron, Mercedes Benz GLC or similar).
Europcar also does Special Van Rentals too.
Owned by Europcar, Keddy is a popular low-cost rental option for travelers heading to Germany. They are renowned for their quick pick-up and drop-off services, as well as for their professional customer service.
Given they’re affiliated with Europcar, you’ll also be relaxed knowing that you are hiring with a reputable brand (hiring with lesser-known companies can sometimes cause concern).
Keddy is a great choice for travelers who don’t have much time in Berlin, given their speedy pick-up and drop-off service. Not to mention they offer some of the cheapest car rentals in Germany.
Although Keddy has a much smaller fleet, it’s still worth comparing them with the others on this list.
We begin with their Mini model, which is best for those on a budget (you’ll get a Hyundai i10 or similar).
Next we have their mid-tier Economy and Compact classes (usual rental vehicles include an Opel Corsa, Hyundai i30 or similar).
Lastly we have their Standard and Intermediate vehicles (you’ll get a Volkswagen Passat STW, Opel Insignia or similar).
Now we have the well-known local company of Buchbinder, who started their operations in Germany over 60 years ago.
Offering a large fleet of cars that don’t break the bank, you’ll also benefit from the extra local know-how that the bigger giants may not have.
Buchbinder is also a great option for those who will travel all around Germany given their large amount of pick-up and drop-off locations.
Starting off we have Buchbinder’s most basic models, which include the Mini and Economy models (you’ll get a Hyundai i10, Renault Zoe or similar).
Next we have their mid-class Compact vehicles (usual rentals include a Hyundai Kona or similar).
Those after a more luxurious ride can pick between their Standard SUVs and Intermediate classes (you’ll get a Volkswagen Tiguan, Opel Insignia STW or similar).
Thrifty are a giant American rental company who have been leading the car rental market for over 60 years.
Not only do they have a large fleet of vehicles to choose from, they also have tons of car rental locations all over Germany. Prices are also fairly modest here, which is a surprise given larger companies usually cost more.
Those looking to keep costs low will want to select from their Mini and Compact classes (usual rentals include an Opel Adam, Ford Focus or similar).
Next we have their mid-tier vehicles which include the Economy and Intermediate models (you’ll get a Ford Fiesta, Opel Insignia or similar).
If you want more class then you can choose from Thrifty’s Intermediate SUVs and Full-Size models (standard rentals of these classes include a Ford Kuga, Citroen DS7 or similar).
Another well-recognised name, Hertz is one of the most popular car rental companies on the planet. They operate in over 160 countries, and are known for their high quality service.
Regular users of Hertz will want to apply for their Gold Plus Rewards program, where you can receive additional perks such as free car upgrades.
Firstly we begin with Hertz’s Compact, Economy and Mini models which are best for those in smaller numbers or are looking to save (you’ll get an Opel Astra, Ford Fiesta, Opel Adam or similar).
Next we have their mid-tier Compact Elite and Intermediate classes (usual rentals include a Mercedes Benz A Class, Ford Mondeo or similar).
Those who want an upgrade can pick between their Luxury and Full-Size models (usual rentals of those classes include a Mercedes E Class, Citroen DS7 or similar).
Hertz also does Luxury Van Rentals too if you’re looking to go bigger.
Budget is a large American rental company that has grown rapidly and now operates in over 120 countries.
They offer a wide variety of rentals that vary on both budget and comfort, so you’re pretty much guaranteed to find something that works for you. Budget also provides perks to clients where you can earn points for rewards with partner companies.
Budget’s Mini, Economy and Compact models are the best for those looking to keep costs down (you’ll get a Kia Picanto, Seat Ibiza, Renault Captur or similar).
Next we have their Intermediate, Compact SUVs and Intermediate SUV classes (usual rentals include a Citroen C5 Aircross, Seat Arona, Seat Ateca or similar).
Those looking for an upgrade can choose from their deluxe Full-Size vehicles (you’ll get a BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe or similar).
Budget also does Premium Van Rentals which is ideal for those traveling in larger groups (or if looking for a more spacious ride).
Avis is the last company to make our list of the best rentals in Germany. Another global powerhouse (who operates in over 165 countries across the globe including Sweden and Scotland), Avis is a highly reputable company and remains a favorite rental choice.
You can also join their Preferred Loyalty Program for extra benefits such as free vehicle rentals.
Travelers who want an inexpensive rental vehicle will want to choose between their Mini, Economy and Compact models (you’ll get a Fiat 500, Seat Leon, Volkswagen Polo or similar).
Next we have Avis’s Intermediate and Intermediate SUV classes (you’ll get a Citroen C5, Volkswagen T-Roc or similar).
Those looking for a luxurious upgrade can choose either from their Premium or Full-Size models (usual rentals include a Mercedes Benz E Class, Mercedes Benz C Class or similar).
Avis also provides Full-Size and Premium Van Rentals.
Rental costs can vary from budget to expensive, and it really depends on what you’re looking for in particular.
Other factors that can affect what you will pay include whether you're visiting during a busy tourist season, or if looking for extras such as getting an additional driver insured on the vehicle.
Having used DiscoverCars to browse different companies, we’ve found that rental costs can vary from $25-$285 per day.
Although Germany certainly isn't one of the cheapest European countries, getting a great deal on a rental can save you lots of money in the long run!
Whilst other countries in Europe can vary, Germany requires drivers to be 18 to rent a car (as well as having a valid driver's license with them).
There is usually a young drivers surcharge fee added to the rental, depending on what age group you fall under.
However you can always find a few rental companies that waive this fee for young drivers.
Hiring a car in Germany is extremely safe. In fact, it's by far one of the best countries to drive in, and for a number of reasons.
Firstly they have well-maintained roads and easily readable signs, which makes the transition to German roads much easier (especially for those who are used to driving on the other side of the road such as in the UK and Australia).
Driving attitudes of locals are also very good too, who respect driving rules and speed limits.
Making the decision to rent a car abroad can sometimes be a tough one, however we think that Germany is one of the best places to do so in Europe.
Here you’ll have a smooth driving experience, where roads are great quality and all signs are easy to understand.
You’ll also benefit from having full independence to travel as you wish, which can otherwise be more restricted when sticking to buses and other forms of public transportation.
When it comes to Germany car rental, there are so many fantastic options so what are you waiting for?
Now you've chosen your rental it's time to plan your trip!
One of the most popular countries to visit in Europe, Germany has tons going for it.
From exploring local traditions and wandering around giant castles to seeing some breathtaking landscapes, any trip around this country will be a really memorable one.
Renting a car in Germany is becoming an increasingly popular way of exploring the country, and we think it’s a great idea for travelers heading here. Not only will you have full freedom to travel as you wish, you can also find a whole range of rental costs and models too.
If you’re thinking of going bigger and renting a Campervan instead, then you’ll want to check out this guide on the best campervan rentals in Germany.
Here are some other car rental guides you may find helpful: