How Old Do You Have To Be To Drive A Rental Car? Can A 19 Year Old Drive?

Author: Rohan Paulos
Updated On:

Renting and driving a car is not necessarily an unfeasible task unless you are deemed “underage”, “teen” or somewhat with legal age restriction. So, can a 17 year old drive a rental car Enterprise or Hertz? Are there states that allow teenagers or legal underage to rent and drive rental cars?

In this guide (read time: 2 minutes), we provide adequate facts to related queries like, can a 17 year old drive a rental car as well 16 years old? You’ll also discover minimum age requirement to drive a rental car, legal requirements and policies of car rental companies for minors.

Young girls playing race game

Can a 17 Year Old Drive a Rental Car Enterprise?

Can a 17 year old rent a car and drive it? No, a 17-year-old teenager cannot drive a rental car with Enterprise in any state of the US. It is illegal for a minor to rent a car and drive it because they do not qualify for the age of getting a proper license, which can be a hazard to society.

However, the States of New York and Michigan allow teenagers 18 years to get a license and drive a rental car. They can rent a car even though some rental companies might charge a little extra if an 18-year-old is trying to rent a car. Read what happen if I scratched my rental car today?

Can a 16 Year Old Drive a Rental?

Can a minor drive a rental car? A 16-year-old cannot drive a rental car in the US. US law does not permit a 16-year-old to have a driving license, so they cannot legally rent a car or drive it. Furthermore, the minimum age to carry a driving license in the US is 21, with the exception of some states. And hence, many car-renting companies allow citizens above the age of 21 to rent a car.

lone female driver

Can a 19 Year Old Drive a Rental Car Enterprise?

A 19-year-old can drive a rental car enterprise in the states of New York and Michigan as the lower limit to get a license there is 18. However, most other states require 21 to drive a rental car. However, in most states, a 19-year-old can still drive a rental car if it is rented by a family member above the age of majority, and the rental agreement explicitly states that an 18-year-old can drive the vehicle.

How Old Do You Have To Be To Drive a Rental Car?

The minimum age to rent a car in the United States is 21. However, some exceptions exist in States like New York and Michigan for drivers who are at least 18 years old and have a valid driver’s license, but additional fees and restrictions may apply. The extra charges mostly range from $20 to $50 per day. It’s best to check with the specific rental location for their policies.

Male handover car key to a female
Can you drive a rental car at 16? Answer is: NO!

How Old to Rent a Car in California?

How old do you have to be to drive a rental car in CA? The minimum legal age allowed in California to rent a car is 21, and the rule is strictly enforced. And, yes no 16 years or even 9 years old allowed to drive rented car California.

However, New York and Michigan allow 18-year-olds and above to drive a rental car. Discover how long does a rental car company have to charge you for damages guide!

How Old to Rent a Car in Florida?

Can you drive a rental car at 16 or a bit older in FL? Florida, like most states, only allows people aged 21 and above to rent cars. However, US government employees or military personnel aged 20 may be permitted to rent a car as long as they provide official orders. 

Can an 18 Year Old Drive a Rental Car?

An 18-year-old cannot legally rent a car without proper consent except in New York and Michigan. However, in most other states, if the car is rented by parents or an older family member, and the rental agreement includes the 18-year-old, then it is okay.

Can an 18-year Old Drive a Rental Car As An Additional Driver?

How old do you have to rent a car as an additional driver? It is entirely dependent on company policy. In most cases, additional drivers must be 21 years of age or older. However, it is not uncommon for rental car companies to allow qualified renters to add an underage or teen of at least 18 years driver to the rental agreement for an additional fee.

teens crashed cars

Facts About Teenage Rights To Rent or Drive Rental Car

Depending on where you rent a car, different laws apply. Most American states permit rental car companies to set their minimum age requirements.

Although 25 years of age is the ideal minimum, this is not always the case because many states permit drivers of rental cars to be under 21.

For instance, drivers must be at least 18 years old to rent a car in Michigan and New York, even if they live outside of those states.

However, teenage drivers aged 18-19 have limited car rental choices and are required to pay an additional underage charge which could range from $20-$50 per day. For top rental companies, this charge also applies to drivers aged 20-25. The age requirements for renting and/or driving a rental car in some American states are listed below.

State Age Minimum














New York








Are There Rental Companies That Accept Underage To Rent Car?

Although car rental companies prefer drivers to be at least 25 years old, many companies still rent to drivers below the minimum age restriction, albeit for an extra charge.

The minimum age restriction required by most rental companies across the United States is 21 years old. Rental companies such as Avis or Hertz rent out to 18-year-olds in Michigan and New York. But due to the higher risk that is typically associated with underage drivers, they cannot be insured.

Furthermore, the minimum age requirements of top car rental companies in the U.S. are detailed below:

  • Alamo

The minimum age for rental drivers with the Alamo fleet is 21. Renters between ages 21 and 24 are limited to some car classes and are charged an extra average of $25 per day.

Drivers aged 18 and older may rent in New York and Michigan. Military or government employees 18 years or older are permitted to rent without extra costs but must present their official orders to the rental.

  • Avis

How old to drive a rental car with Avis? Avis complies with the legal age requirement of at least 21 years in all U.S. states, except New York and Michigan, where the minimum age allowed is 18 years old. Still, under 25 renters will be subject to a surcharge. 

  • Enterprise

Can a 16 year old drive a rental car from Enterprise? You must be at least 21 years old to rent a car from Enterprise’s fleet unless you live in New York or Michigan, where the minimum age is 18.

18-year-old government employees in the United States will be allowed to rent, but must present their official orders. All renters below 25 are subject to a “young renter fee”.

rent cars avis and budget

  • Hertz

Hertz’s policies are more lenient in allowing 20-year-olds and older to rent a car as opposed to the 21 years and over for most companies.

For New York and Michigan renters, the minimum age is 18. Additional charges apply to renters below age 25.

  • Budget

Can you rent a car at 17 with Budget rentals? The minimum age requirement is 18 for New York and Michigan and 21 for other states. Renters below 25 are subject to a daily underage fee.

  • National

This rental company requires a minimum age of 21 years to rent a vehicle. Renters aged 21-24 will be subject to a “youthful surcharge,” which costs $25 per day on average. The minimum age required to rent in Michigan and New York is 18.

Top Companies Minimum Age Limit

20 years 


21 years


21 years 


21 years


21 years


21 years

What Risk If My 17 Years Old Drive Rental Car With A Learner’s Permit?

The only individuals who are authorized to drive a rented vehicle are those who are listed on the rental agreement, which means they must have met the age requirement.

If you allow a 17-year-old or any other underage person to drive your rented car, with or without a permit, and they cause a fatal accident that affects third parties, you would be solely responsible and liable. You run the risk of having your rental agreement annulled and voided.

Male driver gives a key for money
Can you drive a rental car at 17? No states permit it!

How to Rent a Car Under 21?

So, can you rent a car under 21 years? Well it depends on your destination and the rental company you wish to rent from.

According to U.S.A’s age policy, an individual has to be at least 21 of years of age for them to rent car. Different car rental service providers have different rules and restrictions with regard to age limit and car class  you would like to rent.

However, popular companies like Sixt, Advantage, Enterprise, Budget, National, and Avis are among several other providers that offer rental cars under 21 years.

For instance, Thrifty, Dollar, and Hertz require the driver to be at least 20 years old, so you can safely say they have under 21 car rental offers. However you may be required to pay addition charges. You may also sign up for a car sharing service like Zipcar, Maven, or car2go, – a much easier platform for younger (under 21) to join and use.

Can A 17 or 18 With A Licensed and Insurance Drive Rental Car?

For an 18-years old teenager, yes. It is perfectly legal as long as the rental car company is aware that a minor is operating a vehicle and has subsequently consented.  This is so that the legal owner of the vehicle remains the former and not the person who rented it.

Without the company’s permission, driving the car would be considered theft, and the original renter who turned the car over to a teen runs the risk of having the agency void his or her rental agreement and have his/her liability claims rejected.

rent online

Which state can a 16 year old drive a rental car?

A 16-year-old cannot drive a rental car in any state. There are no permits or licenses in any state that would allow a 16-year-old to rent a car. Most states require a minimum age of 21 for car rentals, with New York and Michigan requiring a minimum of 18 years.

Summary of 17 year old drive a rental car!

Now we are delighted one of the often questions we receive, can a 17 year old drive a rental car Enterprise and Hertz is fully dealt with. Generally, 17-year-olds are not allowed to drive a rental car. The policies surrounding car rentals are products of risk management.

Younger drivers are considered less roadworthy and cannot be insured. It is best to wait it out till you meet the age requirement before you can drive a rental car.


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