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The Complete Canada Driving and Rental Guide

Like its southern neighbour, Canada is very much dependent on driving. There is no shortage of scenic towns and destinations across the country and driving may be the best way to explore. Here is a brief driving guide aiming at easing your mind while on the road.

  • Speed Limit and Traffic Signs
  • Seatbelt and Child Safety
  • Parking, Fuel and Toll
  • Traffic Violation
  • Driving Licence and Age Requirements

Speed Limit and Traffic Signs

Driving in Canada is on the right with overtaking on the left. Since winter weather conditions may make driving challenging, we strongly advise you to check the weather conditions before travelling and be well equipped. Do not also forget to save emergency numbers in your cell phone.

Speed Limit

Unlike its neighbour, Canada uses metric units. Distance and speed are marked in kilometres and kilometres/hour. There is a speed limit of 50 km/h in town and 80 km/h on highways. A typical speed limit for the freeway in most provinces is 100-110 km/h.

Traffic Signs

Notably, for the most parts, Canadian traffic signs employ two languages-- English, French or both, and some incorporate indigenous language such as “Cree”. There are basically 4 types of Canadian traffic signs: regulatory, warning, information and direction.

Canada_Traffic_Sign_Stop_Sign_French_and_EnglishStop Sign (French and English)Canada_Traffic_Sign_Stop_Sign_Inuktitut_and_EnglishStop Sign  (Inuktitut and English)Canada_Traffic_Sign_Stop_sign_CreeStop sign (Cree)

Canada has not joined in the Vienna Convention on Road Signs and Signals, explaining why the road traffic system looks different to what we usually see in Europe or other countries.


Its regulatory signs mostly feature a circular shape, with some exceptions.

Canada_Traffic_Sign_No_StoppingNo StoppingCanada_Traffic_Sign_No_Left_TurnNo Left TurnCanada_Traffic_Sign_No_OvertakingNo OvertakingCanada_Traffic_Sign_YieldYield

You will not see a common maximum speed sign in Canada, contrarily to some other countries. The maximal speed sign is usually rectangular, with a black writing on a white background.

Canada_Traffic_Sign_Maximum_Speed_LimitMaximum Speed Limit

Most Canadian warning signs are diamond-shaped with black lettering or symbols on a yellow background.

Canada_Traffic_Sign_Stop_AheadStop AheadCanada_Traffic_Sign_Dead_EndDead EndCanada_Traffic_Sign_Bump_or_Uneven_pavement_on_the_Road_AheadBump or Uneven pavement on the Road AheadCanada_Traffic_Sign_Be_Alert_for_AnimalsBe Alert for AnimalsCanada_Traffic_Sign_Railway_Crossing_AheadRailway Crossing Ahead

In Canada, information signs show where you are, what road you are driving on or how to reach certain places. These signs normally feature a rectangular shape with green or blue background.

Canada_Traffic_Sign_Hospital_NearbyHospital NearbyCanada_Traffic_Sign_Gas_Avaliable_AheadGas Available AheadCanada_Traffic_Sign_Accommodation_AheadAccommodation Ahead

As for directional signs, they are usually rectangular with a green background, and inform drivers about the direction or distance in kilometres to neighboring towns and cities.

Canada_Traffic_Sign_Directions_to_Nearby_Towns_and_CitiesDirections to Nearby Towns and CitiesCanada_Traffic_Sign_Distances_in_Kilometres_to_Towns_and_Citiies_on_the_RoadDistances in Kilometres to Towns and Cities on the Road

You may refer to this complete manual of standard Canada traffics signs and pavement markings for a better knowledge.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.com will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Seatbelt and Child Safety

Seatbelt Laws

As for seatbelt law, every Canadian province makes it compulsory for the driver and all passengers to wear seatbelts whilst the car is moving. Failing to do so will result in a fine that varies according to the province.

Booster Seat Laws

Children of 8 years old and under must be properly secured in a child seat restraint system until they are at least 145 cm tall or 36 kg. Children who weigh less than 9 kg must be secured in a rear-facing car seat.


Age and other requirements vary by Canadian province or territory. You may use this as a reference or an idea for the child safety laws when travelling with your kids in Canada, but it is advisable for you to check individual provincial rules before you set for the road.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.com will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Parking, Fuel and Toll

Parking

Parking regulations vary across provinces and territories and are normally the responsibility of municipalities. But you do not need to worry as signage states clearly for the permitted and forbidden parking on all streets.


· Permitted Parking


Street parking is usually only permitted in the direction of traffic. In some smaller roads, parking is only allowed on one side of the road. 


Plenty of car parks are available in most of the cities. Prices vary greatly from one city to another and can be very high in cities like Vancouver. Parking can be paid by a ticket machine, a metre at the side of the road, or by a parking attendant at a public parking lot. Failing to pay for parking in these areas may result in a fine. 

Canada Paid Parking Sign(Image from i.cbc.ca)

Canada Paid Parking Metre(Image from cbc.ca)


· No Parking


Street parking in some residential areas is not allowed in the winter. There are signs indicating when parking is not allowed.

Canada No Parking

Fuel Prices

The average price for Canada gasoline price in January 2018 is 1.36 Canadian dollar, while diesel cost 1.01.

Toll

There are several toll roads in Canada such as The Ontario Highway 407 and The Cobequid Pass (Highway 104). All of the toll roads have utilized Electronic Toll Collection system. 

Canada Toll Road(Image from o.canada.com)


If you are planning to drive on these toll roads, you can choose to opt into the e-toll system with your car hire company. Normally, the terms are stated in the rental contract provided by the car hire company at the rental desk. These terms should let you be aware that your credit card may be debited 4-8 weeks after you return the car. If you use an Alamo, National or Enterprise rental car, it is advisable to go to check with the Highway Toll Administration site to find out the details of the toll collected.


You are always welcomed to reach out to EasyRentCars' 24/7 customer service team for assistance or clarifications in matter regarding tolling.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.com will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Traffic Violation

DUI Laws

Canada has very strict laws on drunk driving. The limit is the same as in the UK which is 80mg per 100ml of blood but lowered to 50mg in some provinces. If you already have a drink driving conviction on your licence within the last five years, you will be refused entering at the Canadian point of entry. 


Punishment varies by provinces but all are treated very seriously. The minimum punishment for a first offence is a $1000 fine and a year's licence suspension.   

Traffic Fines

Speeding in Canada can be fined from $100 to over $400 depending on provinces. 


For the spot tickets, follow the instructions on the paper to proceed to the payment. It is advisable to pay fines directly when you are still in the city.  


For tickets issued from cities of TorontoOttawa or Montreal, you can log in the city's website to check the details and pay for them by entering your ticket number( or plus with the licence plate number).

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.com will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Driving Licence and Age Requirements

To legally rent and drive a car in Canada, you will need a driving licence issued by the government which has been held for at least 2 years. If your domestic driving licence is not in English, an International Driving Permit (IDP/IDL) or an official translation in English is required when you drive in Canada. 


The minimum driver age for renting a car at a Canadian rental office is 21 years old. This age may vary according to the state and car category rented. 

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.com will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Guest reviews

1 /
Precious

May 25, 2020

Destination: Toronto

10Nothings beats this - ALAMO Pearson

The quickest service ever at an airport. The best day of arrival at an airport and getting a car without any upsell from the customer representatives of Alamo

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J.D

May 9, 2020

Destination: Surrey

7Veachel was great pick up was great drop off was a Shambles

The Car was great . It was on the return. I was told to ensure it was brought to the same location and I had informed them that would require some form assistant to either the airport or closest transit. When I returned the car it wS an issue due to it was raining they would not assist in a lift anywhere . After a couple min then they said to take to an other location which wasn't the easiest place to get to as was confusing . They said a ten min drive turned into 30. They would not apply any discounts or hertz rewards as I use them often .

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April 26, 2020

Destination: Montreal

10Excellent

Good

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S.Modugu

April 16, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

9.3Excellent

They take a lot of time in handing over vehicle after all the process is completed

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B.Allai

April 13, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

5.3not happy with Routes but happy with QEEQ customer service and ease of use

took them 40 minutes to pick me up from the airport. they were very busy, subsequently, the car I received was not properly cleaned. to the point that a hair brush and medicine from previous renter was still in the car...

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April 10, 2020

Destination: Toronto

9.3good experience

Great price, nice vehicle.

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D.Stojnic

April 6, 2020

Destination: Surrey

10Excellent

Excellent customer service,and car

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April 3, 2020

Destination: Coquitlam

7.7Good

Order Dodge but finally come from Toyota. Without auto door make open and close door not easy for the side and back doors. The cleanliness inside vehicle is not very good.

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J.Pearson

March 25, 2020

Destination: Toronto

9Very pleased. Avis staff excellent

Car not clean. Had to return. Even second car had not been cleaned well

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Waleed Mostafa

March 23, 2020

Destination: Toronto

5.3Not dealing with EasyRentCars anymore, even when u tried to make me happy sending me a 5% coupon !!!

Very rude staff not understanding how it feels after you land from a 15 hours flight, insisting to charge a full day cause i had arrived an hour early than my pick up time !

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SF

March 21, 2020

Destination: Calgary

5.7Poor pickup experience. Different car, half a tank of fuel, crack in windshield

Hertz were very poor at pickup. Delivered a different car then was on the booking. Kept trying to sell me additional insurance, upgrade to car and winter tyres (not necessary for the highway driving we were doing in Calgary). The car did not have a full tank of petrol. We discovered a crack in the windshield within 2km of leaving the airport and Hertz tried to say it was our fault. We returned to the rental location and received the car we originally booked which was not offered when we first arrived. On the contrary, the dropoff process was very quick and smooth and the staff was friendly

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b.allai

March 20, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

5.7Average

It took them 35 minutes to pick me up from the airport and 45 minutes to process me and handed me a dirty car... Stuff from previous renter was still in the car. The windshield was extremely dirty.

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March 19, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

6.7Convenient

Staff will ask you to buy insurance at the counter.

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S.Powar

March 17, 2020

Destination: Toronto

10Excellent experience of car rental

The green motion representative was good and polite. I had very good experience at the counter and the pickup and drop has been smooth always.

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March 14, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

7.7Never again ! Routes staff hirea car with Enterprise for ideas on how it should be done

It took two hours from arriving at the reception desk to driving away in the car and there was very little interest in our needs and mostly concern about their attempts to maximise vehicle use so we had to wait for a vehicle that had just been returned to be checked and cleaned - and not much of an apology

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L.L.

March 13, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

7.3It's cheaper than others but with poor services.

Not enough staff with over booking that makes the pickup process very slow.

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A.Brown

March 12, 2020

Destination: Montreal

8.7Great car, middle of the road personell

On the outgoing recording it started to wait at DOOR 9 Montreal airport. I did...I saw the van loading up people at door 7. If it wasn't because I raced out to the van, he would of gone off with out me. The gentleman at the counter was kind, but didn't greet me. He didn't even look me in the eye. He spoke a little too fast as in he had been repeating the same thing all day, but for me it was the first time I'd heard it. The whole process was quick and painless however. The car was outside and apart from giving me a faint direction on where the car was, I had to guess. I was told to press on the emergency button on the key to "hear" where the car was. The car was clearly cleaned in a rush. I understand Montreal had snow on the ground, but it looked like it had just been cleaned over with a dirty rag on the outside. The carpets were still a bit wet from somebody getting in and out of the car. The car was amazing. I am even interested in looking into it further. Great car, great mileage. The drop off was easy, except there was nobody outside directing where the cars and I had to take a guess what to do. Then I waited for over 10 minutes for somebody to come out and he didn't even noticed I was standing there in the 5C weather. Then I took the Navette back to the airport with a lovely gentleman.

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M.Reay

March 12, 2020

Destination: Calgary

9.3Great value and service car rental. Highly recommended

Got a free upgrade which was nice. Easy to pick up and drop off

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F.MacLeod

March 10, 2020

Destination: Toronto

8.7The car rental did the job.

I encountered one problem 15 minutes after leaving the pick up place, the low tire pressure sign came up, the next day I have to stop at a gas station and spend $1.50 to inflate the rear passenger tire.

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R.Hawkins

March 10, 2020

Destination: Calgary

10Excellent

On pick up staff member recommended upgrading to a 4x4 which I'm glad I did. He then took us to the vehicle to make it easier for us

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March 6, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

7.7Average rental location

Staff just handed the keys to me after signing the documents. No one escorted to the vehicle to inspect vehicle with me. Vehicles interior was not fully clean some garbage was left in between the seats and the car just should have been cleaned proper before next driver. Upon return of the car handed keys back to counter staff and was questioned about the end mileage of the car, wasn’t aware that was required from the driver.

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H.Fung

March 5, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

10Overall ok !

Easy to find the counter at the YVR Airport. Pickup car easy and car conditions are good. Return car also easy and fast.

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E.Juarez

March 5, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

10Excelente

Muy recomendado , excelente servicio y buen precio

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Mathieu

March 5, 2020

Destination: Montreal

9.7Excellent

Mazda 3 instead of Chevrolet Cruze. Good car

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Voyageur

March 4, 2020

Destination: Montreal

10Superb experiences.

SUV is awesome, nice car convenient specially in Canada during Winter. Spacious seats and compartment. Comfortable to drive, easy to use touchscreen Display. Overall all superb experiences.

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D.DAFNA

March 4, 2020

Destination: Toronto

10Excellent

Quick and efficient pick up and drop off

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B.Rizkallah

March 4, 2020

Destination: Toronto

10An awesome service

I got a pleasant surprise with car upgrade. Staff were very pleasant at pickup he was very friendly. Also got a brand new car.

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March 3, 2020

Destination: Toronto

7Good

Dirty car inside and out

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Waleed Mostafa

March 3, 2020

Destination: Toronto

9.7Excellent

Amazing

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D.Nadon

March 3, 2020

Destination: Calgary

9.3Very good experience with the Kia Forte

Excellent service and very proffessionel by Danielle at the front desk.i'm very satisfait.

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D.Desai

March 3, 2020

Destination: Montreal

8Very Good

I waited 1 hour 45 mins just for pickup since there were many bookings and no staff. Had to wait outside in winter since there was no space to even get inside the showroom. Finally got my vehicle at 6.45pm. very painful.

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B.Jiang

March 2, 2020

Destination: Halifax

9.7pleasant trip with Thrifty and Easyrentcars, although the rental for child seat is a bit expensive.

The pick-up and drop-off processing was smooth, counter staff suggested us to upgrade to a minivan coz we have 2 large luggages, it's a Chrysler Pacifica, nice car.

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D.Pilkington

February 27, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

9.3Very good

First time used, excellent service, excellent value for money.

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K.Moon

February 25, 2020

Destination: Toronto

8.7Car price and booking process were good, service needs work

Counter staff took a while to get the car they seemed unorganized I had to wait 45 mins while my car was being “cleaned” even though my pickup was supposed to be 10am.

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February 21, 2020

Destination: Montreal

8.7Very Good

Waiting for nearly one hour to pick up the car. Seems didn’t have enough car there.

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G.Fury

February 19, 2020

Destination: Whitehorse

9.7Deal with a big company directly. Less stress and great service.

Easy and great service. We decided to extend our car rental for 2 extra days. One phone call after hours up manager of budget and was organised. As it should be. No stress, easy. One thing on renting a car in the winter in a place like Whitehorse I would have imagined the cars would be all fitted with winter tyres. We found it difficult to access our Airbnb and drive g on many of the smaller roads around Whitehorse with summer tyres.

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Zain Taha

February 18, 2020

Destination: Waterloo

10Excellent

The customer service is excellent. AVIS called me an hour earlier informing that they have unavailability at their location, despite a prior booking. But they asked other AVIS locations and drove me to the location which offered me another car.

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Zain Taha

February 18, 2020

Destination: Waterloo

10Easy, efficient, and excellent

Hertz is a absolutely professional with excellent customer care services. It took me less than 10 minutes to do the paperwork and collect my car. Their cars are clean.

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M.R. Johnson

February 18, 2020

Destination: Calgary

9.7Extremely Pleased and Happy

I found Nisha on the counter extremely polite, helpful and always smiling. She was very very helpful and knowledgeable. WELL DONE NISHA

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S.Lau

February 17, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

10Cheapest in price and highest in service

The car is in very good condition and vwry clean. Staff is friendly and helpful

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Leon H

February 15, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

9.7excellent service, brand new vehicle at an unbelievable price.

i expected to be given a wreck for the price I was paying, so was stunned to receive a Nissan Rogue with only 2900km on it.

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February 9, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

9.7Model was a bit older but still a great deal!

Model was a bit older but still ran well. Counter service was fast and friendly. Drop off only took about 2 minutes!

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F.Alvi

February 8, 2020

Destination: Toronto

10Easy to book and unbeateable prices.

The counter staff was great through the process. The new location is closer to the airport viscount station, so the shuttle service is fairly quick. New location is bright, open, and features free wifi...

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H.Fung

February 8, 2020

Destination: Vancouver

8Very good and will book car again !

Easy And fast to get the car at Vancouver Airport! Car condition is good !

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Daniel Johansen

February 7, 2020

Destination: Calgary

7.3Good car slow service

Hertz were very slow and considering we were the only people there the whole process took longer than an hour to pick up the car. Very disappointing.

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B.Rizkallah

February 7, 2020

Destination: Toronto

8.7Good experience

I got a pleasant surprise by getting a free upgrade to a Jeep Wrangler. Only thing was the customer staff member at the pick up time was in a bad mood that day.

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February 5, 2020

Destination: Toronto

9.7 Booking was simple. Can quickly check prices and book on the go . Will continue using the app

The car was exactly as advertised . Counter staff was courteous prompt and professional . Will definitely use them again .

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February 1, 2020

Destination: Toronto

8.7good experience

It'd be great if Budget could send a fee breakdown email for the credit cards charges.

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Sur

January 31, 2020

Destination: Calgary

9.7Very nicely equipped and recent vehicle with very helpful staff.

Everyone at counter and shuttle were all very nice and helpful. The only small thing was that with the cold conditions the car was washed and there was much ice buildup in the wheels. I needed to pull over and break ice from wheels then everything was ok.

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M.Fong

January 28, 2020

Destination: Calgary

9.3Excellent

Yes, the car offered was almost a brand new car with only around 300km.

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Best rates found by QEEQ users in the last 30 days.

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International customers with domestic driver's licenses listed below have already finished their rental journeys with us in the Canada.

Frequently asked questions

Q1.What is an insurance excess?

The excess is the amount you'll only be liable for in case of damage(under Collision Damage Waiver) or theft(under Theft Protection) of the vehicle.
Information about the excess will be clearly stated in the price inclusion when you reserve a car on QEEQ.

Q2. How can I add an addtional driver?

You are advised to make a request upon your arrival at the rental counter. Additional charge per day will incur unless '1 Additional Driver Included' is stipulated on the rental.
Please note that the same licence and age requirement applys to the additonal driver. The addtional driver is supposed to present the required licence document along with the main driver at pickup.

Q3.What if I want to pick up or drop off my rental car out of office hours?

QEEQ will show you the car offers available at your chosen time on the search results.
However, pick-up or drop-off out of general opening hours may subject to an extra fee unless self-service pick-up or drop-off is available.
After you reserve a car on QEEQ, we will inform you of specific policy of the car hire company by email.

Q4. Can I take the hired car to another country or cross border?

If you want to pick up your car in one country and drop it in another, your search results will show you cars you can do that with.
If you're planning to cross any borders during your trip, bear in mind:
1. You may have to pay more.
There are often extra fees, taxes or additional cover you'll pay at the car hire counter.
2.It may not be allowed.
Depending on where you're hiring, you may not be able to take your car to another country.
Please email us if you want to take your hire car into a different country during your trip, and we'll talk you through your options.

Q5. Can I pick up my car at one location and return it at different location?

Yes. You can pick up the vehicle in one place and drop it off in another. An ‘one-way fee’ will incur. Whether it is inclued in the rental price or what additional cost may arise will be clearly stated at the time of booking on QEEQ.
Please inform the car hire company of your drop-off location when you pick up the vehicle or contact them directly during your trip. You will find a phone number on the rental agreement you signed at pickup.

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