When it comes to European dreamed scenes, lovely narrow roads, and sheep; there is nothing like traveling to the Republic of Ireland, and renting a car to visit as much as we can.
Ireland, with its capital Dublin, as well as other cities, lovely towns and villages; is a country which receives many visitors each year, especially for Saint Patrick’s Day, but also during the rest of the year, many of which decide to rent a car.
When it comes to driving a car in Ireland, some people might be scared of driving to the left of the road, or having the steering wheel to the right, which you get used to in no time.
However, choosing a car rental company in Ireland might be the most difficult decision, as there are some stories on overcharges, as well as possible extra fees if wanting to take the chance to also visit Northern Ireland.
Luckily, by being well informed on the best car rental companies in Ireland, you can have a great experience, and have the best drive on the narrow and beautiful Irish roads.
#1 – Dan Dooley 🏆
One of the favorite car rental companies for travelers visiting Ireland. For those preferring a well established but local experience when renting a car, Dan Dooley will probably be a good choice.
Among the most dreaded concerns when renting a car in Ireland, there is that on whether the quote we get will include the whole price including CDW (Collision Damage Waiver) insurance or there will be obscured fees.
Reviewers and travelers have many mixed opinions about renting with Dooley, but for the most part, reviews go to the positive side; though it is still important to make sure that you are getting your insurance charged, as it is mandatory when car hiring in Ireland.
If you have never hired a car before in Ireland, or your previous experience wasn’t as good as you were expecting and have no preference on car rental companies, Dan Dooley might be a great option for you.
#2 – Conn’s 🥈
Another local Irish car rental company, though this company works directly with the well known Hertz international car rental company, is Conn’s Ireland Car Rental.
As a company working with Hertz, you will go directly to their desk when picking up/dropping the car. However, you do can get better rates with Conn’s than directly renting with Hertz, and get a more personalized service, as well as clearer prices with things like CDW included.
Many people hear about Hertz as this is a major company in the car hire industry, and might find it reassuring to know that Conn’s works directly with them, and yet, you will get the benefits of a company established in Ireland, which knows the nuances of renting a car in the island better.
A good option overall that many have found to be valuable when traveling to the Republic of Ireland, and they offer pick up directly at Belfast, the capital of Northern Ireland as well, if you will want to visit both countries while at the Emerald Isle.
#3 – Irish Car Rentals 🥉
For another well known local car hire company in Ireland, Irish Car Rentals is a popular option for finding good rates for your trip to the Republic of Ireland.
There are mixed opinions and reviews among this company, which makes it clear that it is important for travelers to read the paperwork carefully and ask questions when renting a car with Irish Car Rentals, so that you can be sure you are being charged exactly what you asked for, including CDW.
They have locations in the most common places in Ireland, including Dublin Airport and city’s centre, Galway, Cork, Shannon, among others; and if you would like to cross the border and visit Belfast and Northern Ireland, you must notify the company and pay a fee.
Irish Car Rentals is a car hire to take into account when visiting the Republic of Ireland, which might give you the best rates for your dates, as well as to compare rates with the other companies.
#4 – Car Rental Ireland 🔝
A less known option among car rentals in Ireland, which name probably doesn’t help much, is Car Rental Ireland. A local car hire also offering very good rates and including CDW cost on their prices.
Their offer locations among major cities in the Republic of Ireland, including Dublin and Dublin Airport, Cork, Galway, Shannon and others; which is quite convenient for people outside of the island as well as those in the Emerald Isle.
For travelers wanting to cross the border to Northern Ireland when renting a car with Car Rental Ireland, you must notify that you will do this, and will be charged an extra fee.
Overall, Car Rental Ireland is a good local option to take into account while planning your trip along Ireland, to make sure that you will get the best rates. Always make sure to ask and read the paperwork, and inform yourself if you would like to waive the CDW.
#5 – Hertz 🔝
Hertz is one of the most famous car rental companies in the world, and as such, they also offer locations in the Republic of Ireland, which can be great for those familiarized with this company outside of the island.
When researching experiences and reviews form other customers hiring a car in Ireland with Hertz, it is very easy to be disappointed, as so many of these reviews are rather negative.
However, many of these negative experiences have to do with factors such as renting through a consolidator which might hide some fees in order to show the best prices, as well as not being aware of all of the fees and policies, such as holding credit card money if waiving the company’s insurance.
Overall, Hertz in Ireland is a company offering good services and cars in very good conditions. But it is important to get informed on their policies, and read their FAQ, or consider an option such as Conn’s if wanting to rent with Hertz but getting the benefits of a more personalized, local experience.
For those wanting to travel to Northern Ireland from the Republic of Ireland, you can do it free of charge with Hertz, but you will be charged if you drop-off the car in Northern Ireland.
#6 – Avis 🔝
As an well known international car rental company, Avis is a popular option to rent a car in the Republic of Ireland, especially for those used to rent with Avis in the US or other countries.
When it comes to reviews and experiences when renting with Avis in Ireland, it seems that quite a few of these goes to the negative side of the spectrum, which might be very discouraging for travelers considering this company.
However, some of these negative reviews come from unexpected charges after drop-off which might have occurred due to lack of knowledge on how the insurance work in Ireland, as well as other policies such as extra driver fees or pick-ups/drop-offs somewhere else than the airport.
If you decide to rent a car with Avis in Ireland, do make sure to hire directly with the company instead of consolidators, and ask all of the questions, including those regarding CDW insurance, credit card and any other concerns you may have to make sure you will get a good, transparent experience renting a car with this company.
#7 – Budget 🔝
Budget is an international car rental company with many locations in the US, and a fair share in the rest of Europe, including Ireland, where they have a rather mixed reputation, which can get some travelers discouraged of renting with this company.
Many of these negative reviews, however, are due to factors such as renting with a broker rather than renting a car directly with Budget, which might hide a few of the fees that should normally be disclosed at the moment of renting.
If you don’t have a preferred car rental company, and Budget offers you the best rates including CDW and extras, or it is already your preferred car hire, then renting with Budget might be the best choice for you.
Also, Budget Ireland also has locations in Northern Ireland already, which might be quite convenient if you are arriving in Belfast instead. However, you might still have to pay a fee for crossing borders.
#8 – Europcar 🔝
Europcar is a very important car rental company in Europe, and one with a quite good reputation across many countries. Though there are some not very encouraging experiences and reviews among users renting with Europcar in the Republic of Ireland.
To be fair though, many of these negative reviews come from customers who were charged many extra fees that weren’t shown when they booked the car, which often happens when renting through a broker or consolidator.
If choosing Europcar to rent a car in Ireland, make sure to understand the policies on insurance, as well as the limitation on your credit card, as not every credit card covers CDW in Ireland, and some companies put a hold on your credit card or charges an extra fee if using your card insurance.
Overall, Europcar is also a good company in Ireland, but you must be careful and ask all of the questions you may have, as well as informing yourself well on the nuances of car hires in the Emerald Isle.
#9 – Alamo 🔝
A considerably large car rental company in the United States, Alamo is not as popular in the Republic of Ireland, but they still have a good presence among the most popular international car rental companies in the island.
There are often some concerns in regards to renting with Alamo when traveling to Ireland, especially in regards to hidden extra costs, which is a risk that can be highly reduced by renting directly with Alamo, instead of using a broker or agent.
You might want to choose a different company when hiring a car in Ireland, but if it is the case that Alamo is offering the best rates for you, then inform yourself, contact with the company, ask the right questions about insurance, CDW and credit cards; and if it is still the best deal, you should definitely choose them.