New Zealand

Cheap Auckland Airport Car Hire: The Best Companies

by Paul Joseph  |  Published July 28, 2017

Visitors arriving at Auckland Airport in New Zealand are catered for by five car hire companies. Located in the north of country’s North Island, over 700km from the next closest major city, it is no surprise that many of those who come here choose to hire a car for their stay. Public transport is reliable across Australia, but you can save plenty of money by using your own vehicle instead – and then there’s the sheer convenience factor, which you simply can’t replicate with planes, coaches and trains.

The Auckland cityscape by night (Photo: \ltus via Flickr)

All five rental companies at Auckland Airport are located at the terminal buildings or in the surrounding area. At the international terminal, rental desks can be found next to the arrivals area on the ground floor, whereas domestic travellers should walk to the ground floor of the multi-level car park building, directly opposite the domestic terminal forecourt.

Our car rental company search results

Most people’s main concern when it comes to car hire is cost, but it’s also worth looking out for other factors such as customer reviews. After all, it’s no use getting a great deal but terrible customer service and there are plenty of tales from those who have been stung by unscrupulous operators. At Auckland Airport, all of the car rental companies are reputable and come with good reputations, but to help you make your choice the team at has taken a deeper look at their policies, fleets and past reviews. We’ve then picked out the companies we recommend most highly for three separate categories: Best value, Best for families and Best for luxury cars.

Best value: Thrifty

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Thrifty’s fleet at Auckland Airport includes the Toyota Yaris, which can be hired for around £200 a week, and it was this deal that struck as the best value during our searches. Subcompact, it is ideal for city driving and also has a dash of style. For couples or those travelling solo, we’d definitely recommend Thrifty on this basis. An added bonus is that if you need to return your car after hours, you can drop in your key in the After Hours drop slot on the top of the Thrifty counter. They also offer daily, weekly, monthly, short and long term hire.

Best for families: Avis

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What first caught our eye about Avis was the great deals they have on right now, including saving up to $40 on a weekend rental and driving all over New Zealand one way for as little as $1 per day. A number of these deals would suit families, as they include larger cars such as the Holden Commodore. Of course, we can’t be sure the same deals will be available for your dates of travel, but it’s definitely worth taking a look. Avis also come with consistently good customer reviews and their rental desk is open from 4am to 2am throughout the week.

Best for luxury cars: Hertz

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In all honesty, we were a little underwhelmed with our search for luxury car hire and sports cars from Auckland Airport. But the best from a relatively unexciting range of options was Hertz, who offer the esteemed Lexis Hybrid along with the Toyota Highlander SUV, the latter being a good choice for those planning to traverse northern New Zealand’s more challenging terrains. And for reassurance, all of the customer reviews for Hertz range from ‘good’ to ‘excellent’. Hertz’s desk at Auckland Airport is open from 5am to 2am every day of the week.