Can My Wife Drive My Rental Car? Can My Souse Drive My Car Rental Hired from Renting Agency Free Legally in USA?

Updated On:

Here is one of many queries we receive in our editor’s box – can my lover drive car rental legally or without extra driver fees?

Well here is a straight, short answer: While you cannot rent a car for a third party, your wife or husband – is one of the persons who can operate your rental car as an additional driver without incurring extra payment, but every time.

This is covered in the Authorized Driver Policy, which varies by companies and states in the US. 

This information guide reveals what you need to know whether a husband or wife can operate a car rental as an additional driver, and its requirements for top companies in the US. 

Can Spouse Operates Rented Car? Any Requirements?

Even if your spouse was not present when you ordered a rental car, or even pick up a car, they are generally authorized to act as additional driver and drive it at no extra fee.

Rental additional drivers can be added at any time during a rental provided the term and certain other conditions are complied with, such as:

  • License

For a better half and domestic partner to be considered as additional driver, they must produce a genuine, unexpired government-issued driver license with their photograph.

The driver’s license must be valid for the duration of the rent. Additional forms of government-issued identification may be necessary.

But several companies do not accept expired licenses, photocopies of driver’s licenses, learner permits, provisional or limited licenses, and temporary licenses.

Can spouse drive rental car?

  • Age

Better halfs and domestic partner must be at least 25 years old to be permitted as additional driver for car rental. Partners under 25 are, however, authorized with an age surcharge.

Note, however, that these age limits and policies will differ depending on the state and the rental car company, as most States in USA do not allow underage or teens on road trip to pilot vehicles.

Although there is no official maximum age limit for a spouse who wishes to operate a rented car as an additional pilot, individual companies may set their own car age limit (most don’t allow 17yrs and below) at their discretion.

  • State

Charging an extra fee for a better half is prohibited by some state laws, and for others, it is not. 

To prevent having to pay an excess fee, you must be aware of the policy for additional driver fee in the state where you are renting a car before or during.

Individual companies may have specific requirements for lovers as additional driver and may charge a driver fee based on their terms. Also be aware that if you list a person to operate the rented automobile, your rental car insurance will cover them as well.

Rare view of a female car driver

The top companies in the United States and their requirements are detailed below.

  • Budget: Budget accept authorized drivers at no additional charge. But they must be certified drivers with a driver’s license and be 25 or older.
  • Avis: A lover and domestic partner can drive a car at no extra cost with Avis if they have a valid driver’s license and are 25 or older.
  • Enterprise: At no extra money, Enterprise requires you to meet the same age and driver’s license requirement as the renter.
  • Thrifty: Every additional driver, including hubby or wifey, are charged an additional driver cost by Thrifty. They must satisfy their minimum age requirement and have a valid driver’s license.  
  • Dollar: Dollar requires couples to present a current driver’s license and be at least 20 years old without incurring supplementary fees.
  • National: Mates are not charged an extra driver’s fee by National, but they need to be of at least the minimum required age, have a valid driver’s license, and show up at the location with the primary renter. 
  • Hertz: Hertz requires the renter and their mates to sign the agreement. They must have a driver’s license in good standing and be at least 20 years old. If the renter is enrolled in the Hertz gold plan reward program, the renter’s spouse won’t be subject to any extra fees.
  • Alamo: Alamo charges no extra payment for additional driver who can provide a valid driver’s license and are of the same age as the renter.

Please note that member of top associations such as Emerald Club, permit members in the USA of up to 9 additional operators, without any extra payment as well many Airport car rental agencies do allow extra pilots.

Company Charges supplementary rates?
Budget No
Avis No
Enterprise No
Thrifty Yes
Dollar No
National No
Hertz No, if on Hertz gold plan reward program.
Alamo No

Are There States A Car Renter Partner Become Authorized Drivers?

Yes, there are. Lovers of renters are permitted to pilot rental cars as additional driver, according to several state regulations in the US at no cost.

And, even if they are not included in the renter agreement or present during pickup, as long as they have a license and are of legal age.

Nevada state law automatically designates better half as “approved drivers” on all car agreements. California, Indiana, Iowa, Texas, Utah, Illinois, Missouri, Oregon, and Wisconsin are some other states in this category.

This also holds in New York, but there is an extra charge of $3 each day. Note that, in most cases, this is more likely to be a company terms than state law.

They are automatically added as additional driver by  companies like Enterprise, National, and Alamo at no extra cost. You do not need to state that they will be driving explicitly. 

However, if an accident occurs and the better half is not of legal age (above 25 for a full-size truck, luxury automobiles, etc.), or they do not have a valid driver’s license, the contract is null and void just as if you were the one who did not meet the requirement.

Car key place on rent a car keyboard

Who Else May Be Allowed To Pilots My Car Rental Free?

Aside from your husband or wifey, specific individuals are pre-authorized to pilot your rental car as an additional driver if they fulfill specific conditions.

Depending on the car rental agency. They generally include:

  • Companion driver: The companion driver for a disabled renter who has filled out the non-licensed renter form is pre-authorized for cars.
  • Family: Members of the renter’s immediate family including domestic partner, who live with the driver permanently are also permitted.

Additional driver in the above category are not charged and do not need to fill out any extra paperwork to pilot the rental car.

However, they must meet all age requirements, show up at the car rental desk with the primary renter, and have a valid driver’s license.

FAQ about terms guiding spousal operating rented autos:

Can spouse drive rental car in Florida?

Yes, a conjugal partner may operate a hired automobile within the region of Florida provided they comply with the rental company’s driver prerequisites.

These requirements usually consist of being a minimum of 21 years of age and in possession of a legitimate driver’s license.

To ensure that any supplementary fees associated with adding another driver are disclosed, it is always prudent to verify the specific regulations and policies of the car rental firm in advance.

Young seats inside a parked car

Are wifey / hubby automatically entitled to drive rental car during emergencies?

Yes, they are. Under regular conditions, better half are typically permitted to drive a rental car as an additional driver, and emergencies are no different.

However if the company’s policies and the terms of the car rental agreement forbid additional driver, then your spousal piloting the automobile during emergency may be deemed as illegal.

Does Enterprise offer no-pay contract for 2nd driver?

Yes, they do. Partners of renters who meet the exact age and driving license requirements as the renter is free to navigate the vehicle at no extra cost. 

They are the only additional driver that Enterprise will allow for a paid rental with a debit card.

Can you add a driver to a rental car without them being there?

In most instances, it is not possible to include another operator to the rented vehicle without their physical presence at the desk.

The company will typically require the additional driver to be present to show their driver’s license and sign the agreement.

This is to guarantee that all operators are duly licensed and insured under the rental car coverage.

However, some rental car companies may allow you to add an additional driver to your reservation online or over the phone, as long as they meet the company’s requirements for drivers.

It’s always best to check with the company directly to confirm their policies and procedures for adding an additional driver.

rented with my partner

Can my love operates a car I rented from Budget without extra fees?

Yes, your better half can your rental car. If you rent using a company account, Budget automatically allows your lover to navigate your car at no supplementary cost. They must, however, be of legal age and possess a current driver’s license.

Summary of spousal driving rental automobile!

Now, Can my wife navigate my rental car as an additional driver or not? You and your husband may wish to take turns driving a car. 

While some states and firms automatically add the renter’s spouse to the list of approved drivers without necessitating their presence at the pickup time, it is not always the case. 

We hope our loaded information has makes you aware of the state and company’s car additional driver policy and terms before renting to prevent paying more.


What Are Used Car Interest Rates?

What Is Car Value and How to Determine Value of Your Used Car Worth?

Listen up, car owners! Whether you’re looking to buy a new car, trade in your old one, or sell your vehicle independently, knowing its value is crucial. Don’t get taken for a ride by unscrupulous
Free Carfax Report

Free Carfax Report – Discover What is Carfax Free and How to Get it Here

Attention all car shoppers! Are you feeling overwhelmed by buying a used car, unsure of what hidden issues may lurk beneath the surface? Fear not! With a Carfax report, you can comprehensively understand a vehicle’s
Carfax Report

Carfax Report Review – Your Guide to Buying a Used Car Confidently

Attention all car buyers! Are you tired of being misled by sneaky salespeople into purchasing a used car that is a complete dud? Well, fear not! With CARFAX, you’ll never have to worry about being


Sign up now to get the email newsletter and exclusive deals weekly.