Motorists advised of car hire age restrictions

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Car Rental News - 20/07/2009


In Europe, especially, holidaymakers are warned that they may run into restrictions or surcharges.

Rental car operators in most European countries require that drivers be at least 21 years old. There are exceptions, however. The lower age limit is 18 In Croatia, Germany, Iceland, Slovakia, Slovenia and Sweden; 19 years of age in Estonia and Norway and 20 in Bulgaria, Finland and Switzerland. Luxembourg requires that drivers be at least 23 years old.

Young motorists will find that most companies require that they had have their license for at least one year; and in some countries, the requirement can be up to three years.

German rental car companies require that drivers between 18 and 22 buy their collision damage waiver, even if their credit card company covers collisions. All across Europe, drivers under 25 years of age will face a steep surcharge on top of the operator’s basic rental rate. France is the exception to this, where terms apply to anyone who is 18 years of age or older.

Seniors will not find upper age restrictions or surcharges in the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.

Some local agencies and on some classes of vehicles, there may be age restrictions or surcharges. These typically start from age 69 in the UK: 70 in the Czech Republic, Greece, Poland and Slovakia; 73 in Slovenia; and 80 in Denmark.

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