Age limit for renting a car in Europe

Nov 10th, 2019, 06:03 AM
  #1  
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Age limit for renting a car in Europe

Hello all, Asking for a freind, but, in truth, we are not far from this question. Is there an upper age limit for renting a car in Europe? I know that cost increases as one ages (usually as a surcharge), but can one rent a car if one is over 80? If someone is, would it make sense to make sure to have an International driver's Permit? Thanks.
justretired is offline  
Nov 10th, 2019, 06:14 AM
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Depends entirely on rental company. Some, usually big international ones, don't have upper limit. Others restrict the type of car you can rent, or impose a surcharge (often in the form of 'senior insurance' package). Some local companies impose upper limit, usually between 75 and 85.
International Driving Permit has nothing to do with upper age limit. If a country or rental company requires one, you need to have one regardless of age.
Alec is offline  
Nov 10th, 2019, 06:19 AM
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Thanks, Alec. Does the country matter since we tend to go to England, France, Italy, and Spain (my husband speaks the 3 languages) and our friends have a son and family in London).
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Nov 10th, 2019, 06:40 AM
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You will need an IDP for your travels. Ireland can be a problem if you are over 75, as can Malta and a couple of others, but otherwise it depends entirely on the rental company whether or not they have a maximum age for rentals. Some may require a doctors letter to say you are healthy apparently.
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Nov 10th, 2019, 07:34 AM
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You're going to have to have an IDP no matter what age you are. Speaking multiple languages is a wonderful thing but completely irrelevant in this context. Age limits are governed by the rental car companies. My dad drove in France many times over the age of 80 with rentals from AutoEurope, but I have no idea what their current requirements are. Call and ask.
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Nov 10th, 2019, 08:32 AM
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Originally Posted by justretired View Post
Hello all, Asking for a freind, but, in truth, we are not far from this question. Is there an upper age limit for renting a car in Europe? I know that cost increases as one ages (usually as a surcharge), but can one rent a car if one is over 80? If someone is, would it make sense to make sure to have an International driver's Permit? Thanks.
I have not yet been surcharged anywhere at the age of 77. The IDP is useful. I was pickpocketed last year and had only my passport and the IDP for ID and Europcar found that sufficient enough to let me have a car according to the rental agreement. They said that it would be no problem before they found out that I was in their system because I have rented from them previously.
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Nov 10th, 2019, 08:35 AM
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It would have been a huge problem if you had been stopped by the police though Michael - you must carry your valid driving licence with you in addition to the IDP.
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Nov 10th, 2019, 08:57 AM
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Originally Posted by hetismij2 View Post
It would have been a huge problem if you had been stopped by the police though Michael - you must carry your valid driving licence with you in addition to the IDP.
I am aware of that, but it was in the wallet that was lifted.
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Nov 10th, 2019, 09:47 AM
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Certainly in the Netherlands it is illegal to drive without a current driving licence, even if it has been stolen, and I am sure that is the case elsewhere. So consider yourself very lucky in an unlucky situation.
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Nov 10th, 2019, 02:03 PM
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Originally Posted by hetismij2 View Post
Certainly in the Netherlands it is illegal to drive without a current driving licence, even if it has been stolen, and I am sure that is the case elsewhere. So consider yourself very lucky in an unlucky situation.
I did not have a choice. Do you know how long it takes the California DMV to even issue a temporary "copy" (it isn't) of your license? What would you have done in my place? Cancel the whole trip?
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Nov 10th, 2019, 03:00 PM
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Or modify the trip to use public transport wherever possible?
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Nov 10th, 2019, 03:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Alec View Post
Or modify the trip to use public transport wherever possible?
I do not see that as an option unless going from city to city, and probably canceling some pre-paid reservations. And trying to arrange the transportation would have been a nightmare. I also did not want to spoil the trip of our friend, as we were three traveling together, and she had worked on her own agenda for the trip. Rational alternatives do not always fit reality.

Last edited by Michael; Nov 10th, 2019 at 03:23 PM.
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Nov 10th, 2019, 03:35 PM
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Was either of the other two travel companions able to drive carrying their driving licence? If you had been stopped by police for any reason, you would have been prevented from driving any further, perhaps in the middle of nowhere.

Last edited by Alec; Nov 10th, 2019 at 03:37 PM.
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Nov 10th, 2019, 04:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Alec View Post
Was either of the other two travel companions able to drive carrying their driving licence? If you had been stopped by police for any reason, you would have been prevented from driving any further, perhaps in the middle of nowhere.
The trip is over. No need to discuss the complexities of our arrangements. I only wanted to point out that I was able to pick up a reserved car with just the IDP.
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