Car Hire at Stansted Airport: The Best Companies

by Mark Rebindaine  |  Updated July 18, 2023

Serving 160 destinations around the world, London Stansted Airport (STN) is the fourth-busiest airport in the UK and the hub of European giant, Ryanair.

Stanstead Airport (Photo: Dave Levy via Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0)

For those travellers looking to rent a car on arrival, there are a total of eight car hire agencies located in the dedicated Car Rental Village. The village can be reached using free buses that depart from the airport terminal every 10 minutes.

To determine which rental car companies offer the best vehicles across our three categories (Most Affordable, Best for Luxury, Best for Minivans), carefully researched prices, availability, policies and customer reviews of all car rental companies operating out of STN. Here are our findings:

Most Affordable: Enterprise

While some smaller or local companies have cheaper rates on popular car rental site, there’s always a certain risk of unforeseen add-on charges. For this reason, we’d recommend an international brand and amongst them all, Enterprise stands out for offering some very budget-friendly rates. Renters can find great options like the Vauxhall Corsa and the popular Toyota Aygo at a little under €85 per day (roughly half of what you’d pay for a taxi ride into central London!). What’s more, Enterprise offers unlimited mileage which is great news for visitors looking to incorporate some of the English countryside into their trip. In summary, Enterprise offers good value for people looking for basic, no-nonsense cars that have room for four and space for some bags.

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Best for Luxury: Sixt

As is often the case, when it comes to finding the best rental cars in the luxury market, visitors should look no further than Sixt. Amongst its impressive fleet at STD, there’s a bit of everything, from German classics like the Audi A5 and Q6 to cars from Mercedes Benz, such as the Mercedes GLE and C-class vehicles. And for those with slightly smaller wallets, they have the Peugeot 308 and a Tesla Model 3 on their books. It’s worth noting that Teslas, like all electric vehicles, are exempt from paying the £12.50 congestion charge when entering into London. Renters at this particular branch give the company a large thumbs up, bestowing high praise on their speedy turnaround times, for the condition of its vehicles and the best fuel policy out of all the rental companies.

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Best for Minivans: Alamo

Alamo is the best choice for families planning vacations at STD airport mainly thanks to its large selection of minivans on offer. Several agencies, like Fairview and Green Motion have cheaper options, however, none of them have the years of experience and international prestige of Alamo. Moreover, Alamo has a fleet for any size of family from 7-seaters like the Ford 7-max to 9-seater options such as the Ford Tourneo which is perfect for families with large volumes of luggage. Families travelling with young kids will also appreciate the fact that Alamo allows them to skip the counter and head directly to their rental cars upon landing at the airport terminal by checking in ahead of time. Furthermore, its unlimited-mileage policy means that renters won’t have to worry about incurring any additional costs for those extra miles.

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