Collision damage waiver and theft protection are insurance options that cover renters from paying high penalty fees if the car is stolen or returned damaged. Some Washington car providers already include Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) and Theft Protection Waiver into the rental price but not all of them. We recommend always be aware of your coverage when renting a car in in Washington.
Keep in mind that car hire excess insurances often have a deductible clause, which is the amount you’ll have to pay if something happens during the time of your rental. If you want to avoid unwanted surprises, you should consider adding a no-deductible option to your Washington car rental.
Pros: Staff was friendly and car was really clean.Cons: The location is not where it says it is so I had to look around for it. Gotta update the address.
8.0 Excellent29 Jan. 2021
Cons: Instructions for when we return the car. (There was no one present, we never had any proper instruction on how to retrn the car, where to park, leave the keys etc
10.0 Excellent27 Dec. 2020
Pros: Great car - thank you! Friendly representatives too!
9.2 Excellent22 Oct. 2020
Pros: Easy to pick it up, drop it off,Cons: The "needs maintenance" announcement always turned on when I started the car - very annoying
10.0 Excellent12 Oct. 2020
Pros: Very friendly staff and very easy drop off
6.0 Good30 Sep. 2020
Pros: Convient location.Cons: Tires slid in the rain; staff were not very courteous in addressing my questions; funny smell in the car and cupholders, etc., were a bit dingy; extended time waiting for my vehicle to be ready during pickup time.
8.4 Excellent29 Sep. 2020
Pros: Both pick up and drop off were very easy.
2.0 Mediocre28 Sep. 2020
Cons: I never got To rent the car! I expect A full refund.
2.0 Mediocre16 Sep. 2020
Cons: I made a reservation to pick up at the Enterprise at 99 H Street which is inside of Union Station. When I arrived, the location was closed. I had to have a car service take me to the airport which was a $20 charge, and an hour and a half of my time that I needed for travel. If the location is closed, I’m confused as to why I could even make a reservation in the first place. This was extremely disappointing!
4.0 Okay9 Sep. 2020
Pros: Staff were friendly, despite the many issues we had.Cons: Our economy car was substituted with a ridiculous, bright red, Chevy Camero. I was told there were no other cars available. While I understand there can be substitutions, this model of car could not have been more terrible given we had a long trip planned. We were constantly followed by police and weren't able to fit the majority of our planned belongings - not to mention the gas millage cost us significantly more fuel. The seats were dropped back and low making it painful for me (a 28 year old athlete) to get in and out, let alone my wife with back issues! Not to mention the wide wheels and low profile made hydroplaning a constant threat even in mild mist. The car had obviously not been cleaned, it was disgusting. There were empty ice cream containers under the seats along with other random trash like receipts, a mask, etc. The trunk was full of some sort of mud or grease and, along with the rest of the car, covered in dirt and dust. The windows, doors, controls were all full of smudges and showed no signs of being disinfected or even wiped with a wet rag. But it gets worse, this model of car has tiny windows and visibility is a nightmare. To make that worse, the car had some kind of dealership writing, "lot #3..." melted into the windshield on the drivers' side resulting in even worse field of vision. Lastly, I was told on pickup, after I noted that the return time was not what I had booked (10am versus 8PM), I could bring the car back anytime. After arriving late at night after 12 hours on the road, I found no dropbox for the keys and no where to park the car (even the sidewalk was cluttered with returned rental cars). I had to take more time off of work to return the car this morning, and I was, of course, charged for an extra day. I can't imagine having a worse experience renting a car. At least if I'd been turned away I could have rented a car from somewhere else.
Pros: Nothing. The car was not reserved for where I picked it up.Cons: Your site is complete trash. It kept sending me to cars FAR from where I was trying to pick one up. When I finally made a reservation, I somehow missed that it was (again) not at the location where I needed to pick the car up. STOP this and do not offer vehicles in the general city where I need it, just do it for the location where I need it. I ended up double-paying for a car because of this--which was easy to do, since they had abundant cars available that your garbage site apparently could not find. I will never use Kayak again because of how much this experience sucked.
10.0 Excellent16 Jun. 2021
Cons: Nothing. It was great ! Very friendly, fast and efficient service at the rental counter!
10.0 Excellent6 Jun. 2021
Pros: Great service
10.0 Excellent3 Jun. 2021
10.0 Excellent2 Feb. 2021
Cons: Great service! Friendly staff! Gave me a free upgrade since there was going to be a snow storm and they wanted me to stay safe!
10.0 Excellent8 Jan. 2021
Pros: Friendly and efficient staff both in Washington and Queens.Cons: Nothing.
2.0 Mediocre28 Dec. 2020
Pros: I had to wait an hour outside after arriving on time for my pickup. Once I was inside the agent was awful: rude, unaccommodating, eager to stick me with a pickup truck. What is the point of reserving a particular kind of car if I'm just given what's available after the small car I needed and requested is nowhere to be found, nor, as I was told, is a particular kind of car even guaranteed? I drove the SUV I was given as little as possible while I had it because it was nearly impossible to park it in the city.Cons: Customer service, wait time, availability, respecting the reservation that i had made.
2.0 Mediocre4 Dec. 2020
Pros: Horrible service... additional charges for no obvious reasons. WTH!!!Cons: Charge what they said
10.0 Excellent2 Nov. 2020
Pros: Great staff
9.6 Excellent31 Jul. 2020
Pros: The staff was great, and the car ran well.Cons: The EZ-Pass fees were horrendous! Easier to pay cash.
Pros: Great customer service, very fast check in and out.Cons: After hours drop off would be a great addition to this location.
8.0 Excellent13 Jun. 2021
Pros: Customer service was great when I left a belonging behind! Thank you!
10.0 Excellent12 Jun. 2021
Cons: I wanted to extend the rental but I was forced to get a separate rental agreement. with new pricing and every thing.
6.0 Good3 Jan. 2021
Pros: Pick up and drop off was not easy especially drop off. It’s in a mall and I have no idea where is car returns. I haven’t given any directions, all I have is the address. No signs whatsoever about car returns. I have to park in the mall and go around asking people. I found there office inside the mall and the lady said I can park anywhere in the mall. The lady wasn’t friendly. I’m not super happy about the drop off part but the price and car were great.Cons: Better communication towards pickups and drop off locations and more instructions.
2.0 Mediocre3 Jan. 2021
Cons: They didn't have any cars, despite me having (and confirming) a reservation.
10.0 Excellent1 Jan. 2021
Pros: The process at both locations was seamless.
6.0 Good29 Dec. 2020
Pros: The pick-up was horrible. I was suppose to pick up the vehicle at 12 noon. I didn't get a vehicle until after 1:00pm.Cons: This was my first time driving a "keyless" vehicle. I wasn't given any instructions how to operate it. I had to call a friend to tell me how to start and turn off the vehicle. I'm old school and hadn't rented a vehicle in over several years.
2.0 Mediocre22 Dec. 2020
Pros: The car was comfortable .Cons: The pickup was an absolute nightmare at dc location. Not enough people working, huge lines, line waits, they didn’t have enough cars. They also marked my tank as being full when it was not. I was also charged an additional $20 for some unexplainable reason that I have to now spend time looking into. Never again.
Pros: Very helpful staff.Cons: I was not happy to get a message an hour before I arrived that there may not be a car for me- even though I reserved it over a month in advance. They did have a car (not what I reserved and too large for my taste) but there was barely enough gas for me to get it the nearest station to fill it. All of this was a lot more stressful than I would have liked. The staff person offered me a discount for my trouble but then because the car was an “upgrade” (not one that I solicited) she could only give me $5 off, which won’t cover the difference in the cost of gas thanks to the “upgrade”.
3.9 Mediocre22 Jun. 2021
10.0 Excellent17 Jun. 2021
Pros: Fast check-in process.Cons: N/a
2.0 Mediocre14 Jun. 2021
Cons: We had to exchange cars twice in one day due to severe mechanical issues. We were put in a dangerous situation due to engine malfunctions twice in one day.
2.0 Mediocre14 Jun. 2021
Cons: They ran out of cars. The only option they offered was to return the next morning for one. I had to find an alternative and need my charge refunded.
2.0 Mediocre7 Jun. 2021
Cons: AMEX chip did not function—agent would not rent car
6.0 Good7 Jun. 2021
Cons: No drop off spot, customer service line closed, location does not pick up phone. Hope they got the car.
4.0 Okay7 Jun. 2021
Pros: Pick-up was a mess. We arrived at 8 AM for our pick-up and there was already a line waiting for the Hertz rep to arrive to open the kiosk. They didn't arrive till 10 past to open, at which point several individuals were in line waiting to be checked out and for their cars to be cleaned. We left the lot nearly 30 minutes later than anticipated.
2.0 Mediocre6 Jun. 2021
Pros: There was nothing to like. there were no cars even though I put the reservation up 2 days earlierCons: 1. have the car that is suppose to be there, there. 2. offer an upgrade WITHOUT charging for the upgrade when the company can not honour the car rental agreement 3. do not allow the customer to put the car on hold with a debit card while on line, force them to use their credit card to put the car on hold on line, and than once they get to the location tell them that they can not use the credit card to finalize the payment because it does not have a chip. THATS STUPID.
Pros: Pick up was great. Drop off slow. Car smelled like smoke
6.0 Good4 Jan. 2021
Pros: The car drove nicely and didn’t have any critical issues. The originally confirmed price (NOT what we were charged in the end) was wonderful.Cons: We were hit with a $436.59 ‘’inner city fee’’ despite dropping off where confirmed by our desk agent in Atlanta. At that meeting as well, we waited over two hours as Thrifty, Hertz, and one additional rental company were all required to wait in the same line for two agents. Finally, our windshield wipers did not work on timed settings. During the hours of rain we experienced from Atlanta to New York City, our only option was to hold down the trigger manually.
10.0 Excellent26 Nov. 2020
Pros: All good.Cons: Specific vehicle availability--I requested a SUV but ended up with a minivan.
3.6 Mediocre17 Nov. 2020
Cons: We booked the car for 8:30am. We got there, the car was not ready. They tried to give us an upgrade of a V8 for a long trip when I booked an economical car. We then had to wait 45 mins for a car to arrive. It had tire pressure issues. They filled with air and said it was fine. We got down the road 5 mins and a warning light came on. We then had to find another Alamo to switch out the car which took another 40 mins as they had to do the paperwork and clean the car. 11am we were finally in the road for a 12 hour trip This is totally unacceptable
10.0 Excellent13 Sep. 2020
Pros: Everything was smooth and easy. Car was very clean.
10.0 Excellent31 Aug. 2020
Pros: Incredibly friendly staff, made me feel comfortable and welcome.
3.6 Mediocre2 Aug. 2020
Pros: The car was very cleanCons: So it had leaky tires, none of the charging ports worked, and the guy working there drove around really fast and freaked me out.
2.0 Mediocre11 Jul. 2020
Pros: Told me on arrival their computer system had a glitch and they actually had no cars available. They also said they'd call me in the afternoon to let me know when the next car would be available and then never called.Cons: Fix your website so people don't waste their time.
10.0 Excellent22 Jun. 2020
Pros: Staff was greatCons: Car was almost not ready on time
5.2 Okay31 Dec. 2019
Cons: They didn’t have my reserved car, nor any other car available. This also happened to two other people who were there at the same time.
Pros: Tia was really helpful and easy going.Cons: Nothing, again, Tia was fabulous
6.4 Good25 Nov. 2018
Offices closedPros: Manager at airport location was able to accommodate our reservationCons: We were called a week in advance that our pick up location inDC would be closed that we needed to go to union station to pick up rental. However, after getting an Uber to union station, that office was closed too. Then we had to get another Uber to the Ronald Reagan airport. So more Uber drives. Very late start to our drive to Virginia.
10.0 Excellent18 Oct. 2016
Great experiencePros: I booked at a place that was off the airport and they worked with me to get the car at the airport. Very nice and professional people.
10.0 Excellent20 Sep. 2016
Pros: Great service, great truck
9.2 Excellent6 Sep. 2016
Great Service and Delivered as PromisedPros: I ordered a pickup truck and actually was given my choice of the ones they had on site, not just the one selected for me. Staff was friendly, courtesy and very helpful.Cons: National does not pick up or drop off customers before or after rental, so you are responsible for arriving here and getting back on your own accord.
9.2 Excellent16 Jul. 2016
Pros: Front desk staff was really nice and pleasant.Cons: I didn't enjoy the car I drove. But that isn't the fault of Kayak.
Travelers flying into Washington, D.C. will want to consider renting a car, as cars offer the best access to many of the popular sites and day trips around D.C. For instance, FedExField, home to the Washington Redskins, takes over an hour to get to on public transportation, but only takes 30 minutes in a car. Popular tourist spots such as Shenandoah National Park and Mount Vernon are also easily reached in a hire car.
Fortunately for would-be hire car drivers with flights to Washington, D.C., all of the airports in the greater metropolitan area have easily accessible hire car centers. In Washington Dulles Airport, shuttles outside of the Baggage Claim Area will take travelers to the hire lot, while at Reagan National Airport, travelers will find the hire shuttle outside of Door 4 on the ticketing level.
Rush hour is no joke in Washington, D.C. and travelers should plan accordingly. Morning rush hour lasts from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. and evening rush hour lasts from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. During those times, Key Bridge, Southeast Freeway, Chain Bridge, and New York Avenue should all be avoided as they number among the most congested spots in D.C.
Visitors to Washington, D.C. should be prepared to deal with the city’s famed traffic circles. Traffic circles such as Dupont Circle, Logan Circle, and Thomas Circle are notoriously difficult to navigate for first-time visitors, but with a bit of pre-planning and appropriate route planning, they should be no problem.
25% of our users found a car hire in Washington for $58 or less
Book your car hire in Washington at least 1 day before your trip in order to get a below-average price
Full-size car hires in Washington are around 55% cheaper than other car types, on average
FAQs about hiring a car in Washington
Some car hire companies in Washington which have updated their car rental health and safety policies due to COVID-19 to make sure vehicles are clean and disinfected include Hertz, Budget and Alamo
On average a hire car in Washington costs $71 per day.
Based on ratings and reviews from real users on KAYAK, the best car hire companies in Washington are Enterprise (8.5, 218 reviews), Alamo (8.2, 164 reviews), and Avis (7.3, 180 reviews).
The average price of fuel in Washington is $4.78 per litre over the past 30 days. Filling up a tank of fuel costs between $57 and $76, depending on the car size.
Intermediate (Hyundai Accent or similar) is the most frequently booked car hire type in Washington.
The only car hire company onsite at Dulles Intl airport is Hertz.
The only car hire company onsite at Reagan-National airport is Hertz.
A Intermediate car hire in Washington costs $66 per day, on average.
A Economy car hire in Washington costs $58 per day, on average.
A Compact car hire in Washington costs $76 per day, on average.
In Washington, cars are most frequently hired at Thrifty 23540 Autopilot Drive (37 km from city centre ).
On average hiring a car in Washington costs $499 per week ($71 per day).
On average a car hire in Washington costs $2,140 per month ($71 per day).
What type of car is recommended for driving in Washington, D.C.?Fortunately for visitors to D.C. with hire cars, the streets in general are fairly wide and easily accessible for a range of vehicle sizes. However, if you are going to be spending plenty of time downtown, parallel parking will be much easier to find with a smaller vehicle. Some of the smaller streets are easier to navigate in a small-to-midsize vehicle as well.
Travelers should note that the speed limits in Washington, D.C. tend to be much lower than other American cities. For instance, unless otherwise noted, the maximum speed limit is 25 mph, though many of the larger roads range from 25 mph up to 55 mph. In the immediate area surrounding D.C., the speed limit on highways and freeways is only 55 mph.
Petrol prices in Washington, D.C. are luckily quite low compared to many of the other metropolitan areas in the United States. Visitors to the city will find the average petrol price ranges from about $2 dollars to $2.50 per gallon.
Street parking and garage parking are the two main options available for parkers in Washington, D.C. For garage parking, travelers should keep in mind that many commuters to D.C. make use of the garages so the best locations can fill up fast, especially when an event is taking place nearby.