rental car taxes and fees by state

Rental Car Taxes and Fees by State

Each trip is associated with a waste of money, especially if it’s a trip to the USA. Therefore, budget planning is a fundamental element of a successful vacation – likely, nobody wants to spend too much money without getting the desired pleasure. What are the major components of tourist spending? They include visa preparation, plane tickets, accommodation, food, sightseeing, and transportation. It’s not a secret that many tourists are accustomed to travel around the United States in a rental auto. This is very convenient in terms of movement since it’s possible to be free from public transportation schedules. Also, it doesn’t break your budget, because the average price for car hire in the US is about $20-40/day. Unfortunately, a significant part of the final price is occupied by rental auto taxes and fees by state. What is the exact proportion of these extra charges in the total rental price?

rental car taxes and fees by state

Rental car taxes and fees by state

Different rental auto taxes in each state means that you pay a different price for a car, even if you pick up the same model from the same company. The amount of the additional fee is regulated not only at the legislative level but also by the companies themselves – they include airport taxes, insurance, and other hidden options. For a quick comparison, check out the table of rental auto taxes by state:

State Car Hire Surcharge Fuel Tax per gallon State Car Hire Surcharge Fuel Tax per gallon
Arizona 5.6% $0.19 Montana 4%+4% $0.32
Alaska 10% $0.15 Missouri 4% $0.17
Alabama 1.5%+4% $0.21 Nevada 10%+6.85% $0.34
Arkansas 10%+6.5% $0.22 Nebraska 4.5%+6.89% $0.28
Connecticut 3%+9.3%+$1/day tourist fee $0.44 New Jersey $5/day $0.41
Colorado 2.9%+$2/day rental fee $0.22 New Mexico 5%+$2/day $0.19
California 7.25%-9.5% $0.56 New Hampshire 9% $0.24
Florida 6%+$2/day $0.41 New York 6% $0.46
Delaware 2% $0.23 North Carolina 8%+6.95% $0.35
Dis. Columbia 10.25%+5.75% $0.24 North Dakota 3%+6.83% $0.23
Hawaii $3/day $0.48 Oklahoma 6%+8.93% $0.17
Georgia 4% $0.31 Ohio 5.75%+7.15% $0.28
Idaho 6% $0.33 Oregon 17% in Multnomah County only $0.37
Iowa 5%+6% $0.31 Pennsylvania 2%+$2/day $0.59
Indiana 4%+7% $0.42 The Island of Rhode 8%+7% $0.34
Illinois 5% $0.34 South Dakota 4.5%+1.5% $0.30
Kansas 4%+8.68% $0.24 South Carolina 5%+7.43% $0.21
Kentucky 6% $0.26 Texas 10% $0.20
Louisiana 4.45%+9.45% $0.20 Tennessee 3%+9.46% $0.26
Maryland 11.5% $0.35 Utah 2.5%+7.5% $0.29
Maine 10% $0.3% Vermont 9% $0.32
Michigan 6%+6% $0.41 Virginia 10% $0.21
Massachusetts 6.25%+$2 state fee $0.27 Washington 5.9% $0.49
Mississippi 6%+5% $0.22 West Virginia 6%+6.38%+$1/day state charge $0.36
Minnesota 9.2%+7.43% $0.29 Wisconsin 5%+3% $0.33
Wyoming 4% $0.24

States Providing the Highest Taxes and Fees

Obviously, each state has its own extra percentage rates in terms of car hire. However, why in some of them rental auto taxes are especially large?

The fact is that in these states local administration is authorized to set the number of additional fees at their own discretion. And if we add these taxes to the state fees, plus daily tourist charges, the total amount can reach almost 20% of the whole rental price.

rental car taxes and fees by state

Well, which states have the least profitable rental auto taxes and fees?

State Car Hire Surcharge Average combined Rate State Sales Tax Additional charges may apply Total Percentage
Nevada 10% 6.85% 2% 16.85%-18.85%
Minnesota 9.2% 7.43% 16.63%
Arkansas 10% 6.5% 16.5%
D. Columbia 10.25% 5.75% 16%
Rhode Island 8% 7% 15%
N. Carolina 8% 6.95% 14.95%
Tennessee 3% 9.46% 12.46%
S. Carolina 5% 7.43% 12.43%
Connecticut 3% 9.35% $1/day 12.35%+$1/day
Kansas 3.5% 8.68% 12.18%

Recommendations on how to avoid high fees in the USA

Despite the rather high rental taxes plus fees, everyone who is going to rent a car in the USA can significantly reduce his spending. In order to do this, check out some useful guidelines that allow you to lower the price tag slightly:

  • Avoid car hire at the airport

Airport charges are another item of expenditure for a car rental company. This means that it will be 100% included in the price of the car, and the rental itself will be more expensive than a similar one in the city location.

  • Read the rental terms and conditions carefully

Sometimes, unscrupulous providers deliberately hide the real value of extra payments so that the total price of the car looks attractive. Thus, read carefully the terms of the rental, especially those items that are written in small print.

  • Choose the best location to start the trip

If you are going to have an interstate journey around the United States, which implies a long-term car hire, then it makes sense to choose a state and destination to pick up your car with the smallest rental car taxes. For this reason, see the first table of this article.

Road trip to the USA is always an unforgettable experience wherever you go, so don’t be afraid of extra charges applied when choosing to use rental cars. Often they don’t have a very strong effect on the final price, which means you won’t exceed the limit of your budget and will be fully satisfied with your vacation.

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