Renting a Car in France: Everything You Need to Know in 2024

Last Updated on July 11, 2024 by April Nicole

Renting a Car in France: A red SUV driving on a coastal road with a stunning view of rocky cliffs and a serene blue sea under a wispy clouded sky, evoking a sense of adventure and the beauty of seaside travel.
Psst! This blog post about renting a car in France contains affiliate links in it which sends me a bit of extra money if you use them… at no extra cost to you. Merci!

LOOKING TO RENTING A CAR IN FRANCE, BUT UNSURE HOW TO?

I’ll show you how, keep reading…

You’ve landed at the right site! I’ve been living in France for 3 years now, and have rented cars in the country. In this post, I’ll take you step-by-step through the rental car process in France so you can feel comfortable doing it.

The majority of visitors want to know where is best in France to rent a car, first and foremost. I always recommend and use Discover Cars when I rent a car in France for a number of reasons.

  1. To ensure you receive the best deal, they look through both local French businesses and international companies.
  2. Cancelation is FREE up to 48 hours before to your rental.
  3. Their Full Coverage policy is reasonably priced.

Are you ready to discover the specifics of renting a vehicle in France? Starting with the most common queries regarding renting a car in France, let’s get started.

Renting a Car in France With Discover Cars

Renting a Car in France

I moved to France in 2021 and have been traveling throughout the country a lot. My personal experience hiring a car in two different French cities is what I will be explaining.

🚘Because they consistently seem to offer the best prices, I suggest and use Discover Cars when I make an online reservation for a car rental in France.

I always use them since they give FREE cancellations up to 48 hours prior to your reservation and they consistently have the best offers when I search.

This is the exact steps that I used to get my rental car:

1. How to Use Discover Cars to Make an Online Car Reservation

Enter your desired pick-up location and travel dates on the Discover Cars website. This will be the airport in the city you are visiting for additional travelers.

⚠️ ONLY RENT FROM WELL-RATED COMPANIES

Renting a Car in France

While everyone wants to find those amazing France car rental discounts, I suggest you to filter by reviews because the cheapest place is rarely the best. These are also typically the locations that charge extra fees and expenses.

To ensure that I have the same wonderful experience as those other reviews, I personally never rent from local companies who have a rating of fewer than seven stars out of ten.

As they say, you get what you pay for in this situation. In my opinion, it’s worthwhile to forgo a little cash in order to avoid receiving subpar treatment when on vacation abroad.

2. Choose Complete Coverage with Discover Cars

Renting a Car in France

Because of Discover Cars’ affordable pricing, I always choose Full Coverage when I hire a car, and I’m not the only one! Renting a Car in France

85% of consumers utilize their Full Coverage Policy to have peace of mind while renting a car in France, according to the Discover Cars website.

Discover Cars offers rental automobile damage insurance up to 2,967.84 Euros (about $3200 USD) in coverage for rental car damage for roughly $7–10 USD each day.

This covers dents, dings, scrapes, tires, windows, glass, towing, misplaced keys, and more.

3. What does Discover Cars cover? (And what isn’t covered?)

🤔WILL CAR RENTAL COMPANIES ACCEPT THIS POLICY?

Legally speaking, they must, and every business I have ever worked with has agreed to this third-party policy via Discover Cars. Renting a Car in France

This is only one of the many reasons I advise you to hire from a reputable business with excellent customer care.

😎 HERE’S THE PROCESS

They attempt to upsell me on their insurance practically every time I rent from them, and I always say no. As previously stated, any legal requirements for France automobile rental insurance are satisfied by the Discover Cars coverage.

The car rental business will place around 2,504.36 Euro ($2,700 USD) on your credit card if you choose not to accept their insurance.

They fully refund your money when you return the rental car undamaged. In the event that you return the rental automobile damaged, your deposit will be deducted.

After that, you’ll need to file a claim with Discover Cars, which, according to their website, is often handled in 48 hours or less.

Discover Cars will compensate you under their Full Coverage Policy as long as the damage is under 2,967.84 Euros (about $3200 USD), which does cover a lot.

🤔 HOW DO I MAKE A CLAIM WITH DISCOVER CARS?

The procedure is simple if you need to register a claim with Discover Cars.

Your booking confirmation email contains your login information, which you can use to log in on your laptop or the Discover Cars app (📲 Android; 🍎 Apple).

The Discover Cars Full Coverage Policy is far less expensive than any I’ve seen given by the automobile rental businesses directly, at only $7–10 USD each day. Renting a Car in France

They typically charge $30 USD per day for direct policies. If that is your option, you will have to pay for auto insurance when you pick up the vehicle; it is not included in the rental cost when you make the reservation.

You can choose to obtain full coverage French insurance straight from the provider and still rent with Discover Cars to benefit from their affordable prices and NO FEE cancelation policy.

🚨 DISCLAIMER: PLEASE READ THIS BEFORE YOU BOOK

I have personally rented vehicles in two French cities, including Valensole and Lille, and the information above is based on those experiences.

I’ve always had positive experiences using Discover Cars.

Though unfortunately I have no idea how your rental experience will go, I hope this information was useful for your travel to France.

The one piece of advice I can’t emphasize enough is to only hire from a reputable business if you do choose to use Discover Car Rentals. My positive experiences are directly related to my preference for working with well-regarded businesses.

For other information about Discover Cars, please get in touch with the company directly.

Additionally, you can read more than 147,000 reviews for Discover Cars and their 4.6 out of 5 star rating on TrustPilot.

Renting a Car in France FAQ

Is it safe to rent a car in France?

Yes, renting a vehicle and driving in France is quite safe for the great majority of tourists. I’ve really done it a LOT of times!

However, not all companies are made equal, therefore you should choose the most reputable one in France, which is Discover Cars in my opinion.

Is it safe to drive in France?

In general, driving is seen as safe in France. France is a big country, so road travels there are common, and most drivers have a trouble-free journey.

The one clear limitation to that is that you will be operating a vehicle in a foreign country where you are not acquainted with the traffic laws, driving regulations, or regional customs.

Check out the 10 France driving tips below that will help you get more comfortable driving in France.

Is It Possible to Drive a Car in France with a Foreign License?

It is not legally necessary to have an international driver’s license in France.

If your native language is not French, it’s usually advised to have an international driver’s license translated from it. These are usually about $20 and are not too hard to find.

You can use your US license if you’re from the US and will be in the country for less than ninety days (which is the maximum amount of time you can stay in the Schengen area).

Recall that while the legal driving age in France is 18 years old, renting a car requires you to be at least 21 years old. You might be asked in some places if you’ve had your license for a minimum of a year.

What Are the Main Requirements for Renting a Car in France?

There are certain requirements to be aware of if you intend to drive in France. To drive legally in France, you need to have the following documents on you at all times, in addition to other prerequisites.

  • You need to be over 18 years
  • Valid Driver’s License: issued more than a year before the car rental
  • Current registration of a rental
  • Valid Passport: it covers all occupants in your vehicle, particularly when traveling close to French borders.
  • Valid Car Insurance
  • Credit Card to Pay the Deposit (or debit if the rental company allows)

What Should You Know About Car Rental Insurance in France?

You must have international insurance prior to driving in France, and in the event that you are stopped, you will need to provide identity, your driver’s license, and evidence of your vehicle registration.

The insurance that comes with rental cars is usually limitless third-party liability insurance, which covers accidents and injuries to other people and their vehicles even if you are at fault.

However, there may be an additional charge for this insurance because it does not cover harm or injury to the driver of their vehicle or the rental vehicle.

You will have the option to purchase collision damage waiver (CWD) or deductible insurance when you rent a car, but you might want to shop around first because they might end up being extremely costly.

Should I rent a car in France?

Renting a car in France gives you the flexibility to go at your own speed and to discover the best hidden gems in France off the usual route.

You have less time to explore on group trips in France, but when you hire a car, you can explore at your own pace.

I believe that many tourists, even those who are unaware of it, really desire to rent a vehicle in France since it is widely seen to be a safe place to drive and the rental car procedure is straightforward and hassle-free.

Renting a vehicle from a reliable business like Discover Cars is one of the most crucial things to remember while renting a car in France. Additionally, I suggest using their Full Coverage Policy, which I do each time.

In the event that you do not get it, be sure to obtain French auto insurance as well, since your coverage from your policy in the United States, Canada, Europe, New Zealand, etc. will not extend to France.

Although it’s often much more, you may purchase directly from the rental provider. The Full Coverage Policy is recommended for the best deals.

How much does renting a car in France cost?

The cost of renting a car might vary according to the business, the time of year, and the kind of vehicle, but most locations will give you a discount if you book far in advance of your trip to France. The lowest automatic vehicle often costs $15–40 per day.

You may prefer to choose a smaller car instead of a larger one as the latter will cost more and be less practical on narrower roads.

Renting a manual vehicle is almost usually far less expensive than renting an automatic. It’s not very usual for rental companies to have automatic cars.

To compare rates for your dates and identify the best offers, you may want to take a look at Discover Cars. World-famous rental companies such as Sixt Car Hire, Europcar, and Avis may offer you some excellent offers.

🚙 INTERESTED IN DOING A ROAD TRIP IN FRANCE?

One of the greatest ways to explore France is by road, particularly in areas like the Provence and the French Riviera. If you’re thinking of taking a road trip, you should hire a car in France before you go.

Additionally, driving is the most convenient method to discover France’s hidden beauties, even if you’re not planning a lengthy road trip. Simply pick up your France car rental at the airport when you arrive, for convenience’s sake.

Final Thoughts: Renting a Car in France

You could have come across contradicting information if you were searching for information about renting a vehicle in France. Both the formal regulations and the real-world practices at the rental vehicle agencies exist when renting a car in France.

Having hired vehicles in two French locations, I hope this post helped to clear up any confusion you may have had and that you are now at ease with the full France car rental procedure.

Any questions? Please don’t hesitate to ask me!

France Travel Planning 🇫🇷

For any trip to be successful, preparation is key. Do it the easy way:

Accommodation 🛌

  • Booking.com – Find diverse accommodations, enjoy easy booking with great deals, and rely on real reviews and 24/7 support.
  • Expedia.com – With its user-friendly interface, it simplifies the process of booking hotels and holiday packages to France.
  • VRBO.com – Your go-to platform for unique and comfortable vacation rentals in France.

Transportation 🚘

  • DiscoverCars.com – Offers a seamless booking experience, ensuring you find the ideal car for your adventures in France.
  • GetTransfer.com – Is the ultimate solution for your travel transfer needs, offering an efficient, flexible service and comfortable transportation.
  • Trainline.com stands as a quintessential tool for savvy travelers seeking to navigate France’s extensive rail network with ease and confidence.
  • Skyscanner.com – Simplifies your travel planning with its user-friendly interface, offering a comprehensive comparison of flights.

Attractions, Activities and Tours 🇫🇷

  • Viator.com – Stands out as a trusted resource for travelers seeking unparalleled experiences across the globe.
  • GetYourGuide.com – Offers an extensive collection of tours, activities, and attractions in France.
  • ParisCityVision.com – This tour company specializes in crafting exceptional experiences across Paris and France.

Communication 📱

  • Orange Sim Card – Discover seamless connectivity on your French travels with an Orange Holiday Europe Sim Card, a top choice for tourists.
  • Airalo.com – The world’s first eSIM store that solves the pain of high roaming bills by giving travelers access to eSIMs (digital SIM cards).

Travel Insurance ✈️

  • SafetyWing.com – Travel with peace of mind knowing you’re protected in almost every corner of the world.
  • Travel Insurance Master – Visit their website to discover the ideal insurance plan that aligns with your travel dreams.

These are only a few of my favorites; for more, see my comprehensive guide to the top travel booking websites for France.

Keep Up with April Nicole

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