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What Are the Additional Charges When Renting a Car?

Additional charges

When renting a car, there may be additional costs required by your rental provider. Some of these costs will be calculated upon booking depending on your needs, while others may only become apparent during your journey if, for example, you use toll roads or incur a traffic fine.

It’s good to know what you might be charged for, so here is a list of some common additional charges that you may come across:

  • Additional drivers: If you’d like to nominate other eligible people to drive the rental car, there may be a fee to do so. If there is a fee, it’s usually applied per additional driver, so the more drivers you include, the more you’ll be charged.
  • Credit card surcharges: Depending on the type of credit or debit card you use for payment—and the rental provider you select—there may be a small surcharge.
  • Damage costs: If the rental car is damaged whilst in your possession, you’ll be charged for the repair costs regardless of the extent of the damage.
  • Excess insurance: Excess insurance is not mandatory, but purchasing it could save you money in the long run if the rental car is damaged or stolen.
  • Extras: If you wish to add any extras to your rental car booking, like a child seat or GPS unit, you’ll be charged per day for use of these items.
  • Kilometre charges: If your rental car comes with a kilometre limit and you exceed this limit, you’ll be charged per additional kilometre at a rate calculated by the rental provider.
  • One-way fees:  If you would like to pick up and drop off your rental car at different locations, a one-way fee may be added to your invoice. This fee will be calculated when you book and included in the total price of the rental.
  • Refuelling fees: Most rental providers will request that you return the rental car with a full tank of fuel. If you return the car without a full tank, the rental provider will likely charge you at an inflated price per litre for refuelling.
  • Tolls: There are only three toll roads in New Zealand, and you can pay for use of these in advance by visiting the NZ Transport Agency website or by paying at a service station. If you don't arrange payment for your tolls ahead of time, the bill will be forwarded to your rental provider, and you’ll be required to pay any toll amounts plus any applicable admin fees.
  • Traffic fines: If you incur a traffic fine of any type, whether it be a parking ticket or a speeding fine, you’ll have to pay the fine as well as any admin fees invoiced to you by the rental provider.
  • Young driver surcharge: Even if you’re eligible to rent a car based on the rental provider’s age and licence requirements, if you’re under 25 years old, a young driver surcharge will likely be added to your invoice.

Read more about the process of picking up a rental car.

For example:

Jane Drove From Auckland to Wellington

Jane rented a car in Auckland and drove to Wellington, and because she picked up her car in one location and dropped it off in another, she was charged a one-way fee. On her journey, she travelled on toll roads and surpassed her daily kilometre limit, both of which she was charged for. However, as Jane returned her rental car with a full tank of fuel and no damage, she did not have to pay any further charges.