Car rental under 21 in Canada

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How old do you have to be to drive a rental car in Canada?

Picturesque landscapes, wild nature, breathtaking ski resorts, and well-developed modern cities: these are just a few reasons to enjoy Canada while sitting behind the steering wheel of a car. This country is so versatile in terms of travel opportunities that it’s on the must-visit list of tourists of any age.

Of course, the younger generation more often prefers to explore Canada in a rental vehicle.

If you are one of them, then probably the lowest car rental age limit in Canada is the most principal question. But don’t worry, and check your passport! The minimum age to rent a car in Canada is 19 years old.

This means that car rental for under 21 on the Canadian territory is officially authorized. In addition, some suppliers are willing to work even with 18-year-old drivers in specific locations.

Unfortunately, this imposes some risks on the company itself, thereby increasing the cost of under 21 rental car by the size of the young driver fee.

Another limitation for the underage renters is a possible restriction on the pick up of such classes of cars as 7-seater minivans, SUVs, and luxury vehicles. In any case, check the conditions of the vendor every time you are going to reserve a car!

What is the minimum age to rent a car in Canada?

So, you carefully planned the journey, thought out the route, decided the dates of the trip, and your next step is simply to book a car.

However, be on the alert! Have you taken everything into account? When reserving a car rental in Canada, minimum age is what could be causing the trip to be canceled.

In most locations of Canada, you should be already 19-20 years old at the time of pickup, but this age is also under the partial influence of the supplier.

The point where you want to start the road trip also matters. For example, in the provinces of Saskatchewan and Quebec, the minimum driver's age to rent a car is 18. To find out about the possibility of car rental under age 21 in a particular spot, always study the policy of the vehicle vendor that interests you.

Can you rent a car at 18 in Canada?

The short answer is yes, but it depends on the car rental location you want to drive your under 21 car rental in. If it is somewhere in Saskatchewan or Quebec, great news: the minimum age to rent a car in this provinces is 18. Just prepare to pay the surcharges.

Can a 20 year old rent a car in Canada?

Yes, you can easily find a car rental under 21 in Canada. The minimum age to rent a car in most car rental locations in Canada is 20. Most car rental companies provide their Canada under 21 car rentals to drivers with a young driver fee.

What car rental places rent to under 21 in Canada?

In preparation for a road trip, it’s very important to plan your future route in such a way to see as many unique places as possible in a short time. To do this, you need to pick up a rental car under age 21 in the most convenient location.

In Canada, you can plan your journey without any restrictions, because vehicles are available in almost every city and province.

You can pick up your under 21 car rental Canada in the following downtown and airport locations:

How much does car rental under 21 cost in Canada?

You won’t find a definite answer to this question since the car rental rates are influenced by a large number of variables. Seasonality, company, duration of car hire, size and type of vehicle: these factors can lead to both a price drop and rise.

When booking on, you have the opportunity to check available offers from all providers at once. Dollar, National, Enterprise, Budget, Alamo, Hertz, Avis, Thrifty, and other vendors will be on-site, which makes it possible to compare them in many ways and ultimately choose the best car rental under age 21 deal.

Of course, you would like to know at least approximate prices for certain classes of cars. Here they are:

Vehicle Class Average Price per Day
Low Season High Season
Economy, Mini, Compact 44 CAD 48 CAD
4x4 SUV Crossover 81 CAD 87 CAD
7 Passenger Minivan 106 CAD 138 CAD

Remember that the prices indicated on the website are valid for 25+ drivers. If your age is insufficient, the daily young renter fee will be added to the total vehicle cost. It’s imposed on everybody who is not yet 25 years old.

In order to rent a car in Canada under 21 at a more loyal price, follow a few tips:

  • Choose an early booking. 7-10 days before the start of the trip, the prices will be much lower than on the pickup day.
  • Start your trip on weekdays. As you know, weekends are a period of increased demand, which causes price growth.
  • Prolong your trip if possible. Choosing a car for a longer period, each rental day will be cheaper.
  • Look for an advantage in neighboring locations. Very often, prices for the same car in the nearby points are different, which gives you the opportunity to choose a cheaper offer without changing the route.
  • Avoid one-way deals and border crossing. These additional options are convenient but costly.
  • Check for possible discounts and promotions. This is another way to lower prices by 10-20%.

What car rental companies rent to under 21 in Canada?

A highly trusted provider is what you always want to have at hand. Well-maintained vehicles, reasonable prices, high-quality service, and timely support service are indicators that are inherent in reliable vendors, and this is what everyone is looking for in under 21 car rental companies.

Indeed, you never want to spoil your trip by stopping somewhere because of a car breakdown or some other reason beyond your control.

Therefore, it’s very important to find an ideal option among rental car companies that allow under 21 drivers provided below:

How to rent a car in Canada under 21?

At first glance, it might seem that picking up a car in Canada as a youngster is a simple procedure. However, despite the high prevalence of car hire services, some companies may deliberately refuse you.

This is partly explained that under 21 car rental is an additional source of financial risk for the provider, but most of it is caused by the local legislative system. In fact, in some provinces, the minimum age is 18 years old, while in the rest of the territory of Canada, the minimum age to rent a car is 20.

Of course, it’s not enough for you to meet age limits to enjoy car rental under 21 years of age. Along with this, you must have some documents with you:

  1. Identification document. It must contain a clear photo to confirm your identity.
  2. Driver’s license. The policy of Canadian companies requires this document to be in English or French. If your domestic license doesn’t have a translation into any of these languages, then an IDP is required. As long as you have g2 license, you can have only one other passenger under the age of 19 and you are not allowed to drive between 12 am and 5 am.
  3. Credit card. In case you don’t have a credit card in your name, the car rental company may refuse you to rent a car. Part of the credit limit on a bank card should be blocked as a deposit, which is a guarantee of your financial responsibility. Therefore, make sure that you have it with you.
  4. Printed voucher. This document is a confirmation of your reservation and is necessary for quick and easy processing of the deal.

How much is under 21 car rental fee in Canada?

The underage surcharge is a kind of material compensation for possible damage to the vehicle due to the lack of experience of young renter. It’s charged from all drivers under 25 years old.

Of course, this amount is not fixed, as all car rental companies under 21 in Canada have certain differences. However, on average, a young driver’s fee is $25-30 per day.

Check the table below for more information.

Car rental agency Minimum car rental age Young driver fee
Advantage 21 $27
Alamo 21 $25
Avis 21 or 18 in Saskatchewan $35
Budget 21 $29.95-35
Dollar 20 or 18 in Quebec $25-35
Enterprise 21 $15
Europcar 21 $25
EZ 19 $20-30
Fox 19 $14
Hertz 20 or 18 in Quebec $25-30
National 21 $25
Thrifty 20 or 18 in Quebec $30

Young driver charges are per day and may be subject to local taxes and surcharges.

You see that the lowest under 21 car rental fee is available with Fox - only $14 per day. In turn, if you want to work with such well-known international giant as Enterprise car rental under 21 fee will average $30 per day in different locations. The same is about Hertz car rental under 21 deal that withdraws an extra $25-35 per day from young drivers.

Which is the best under 21 car rental company in Canada?

For each of us, the concept of the best provider may be different, since the choice is made according to personal preferences and requirements. Someone takes into consideration the quality of service and a good price, but for someone - the reviews of travelers and clean cars matter.

Basically, an ideal car rental under 21 provider is a whole set of positive points that forms rating. It includes pricing, service quality on the counter, as well as pick-up and drop-off processes. According to these characteristics, the best vendors are Enterprise, Alamo, Dollar, and National.

However, the best-rated car rental companies usually differ in various Canada locations. To this list of best rental car companies under 21, we can add Avis, Hertz, Discount, Budget, Ace, and Thrifty.

Before making the final choice, always try to compare companies not only by main but also by secondary indicators, such as the young driver’s fee amount, the cost of additional options, etc. In such a way you will catch the most favorable offer.

Under 21 car rental video review in Canada

Those travelers who at least once used for under 21 car rental in Canada were satisfied with the service. They noted the ease of booking, reasonable prices and trouble-free pickup and return of the vehicle, which as a result had a positive impact on the trip.

As proof, watch the video of our happy customers:

Review of Zoom Rent a Car Car Rental in Toronto Pearson International Airport [YYZ], Canada
Review of Snap Rentals Car Rental in Queenstown Airport [ZQN], New Zealand

How to avoid under 21 car rental fee in Canada?

You probably always want to have the lowest price possible, especially if traveling on a budget. Due to the average underage fee of $25-30 per day, it can significantly affect the final price of 21 and under car rental, increasing it by 40-50%.

This fact raises the question: how to avoid this surcharge and are there any fee waivers available to young renters? The answer is YES, there is. This is possible with the following programs and memberships:

CAA Membership

If Hertz is a potential company you decided to work with, then you are lucky. With CAA membership, your Hertz car rental under 21 deal won’t have a young driver surcharge in the total cost, but include Roadside Protection and special reduced rates.

However, this trick only works in the USA and Canada, and you will need a special CAA code.

Another way to pick up the underage rental with no fee is Gold Plus Rewards program from Hertz. The minimum age of potential participants was reduced to 18 years old, which also allows young travelers to avoid the fee.

Temporary exclusions and promotions

Sometimes, in order to attract customers, companies make some options free of charge, and also exempt from certain fees. This promotion may apply to the young driver surcharge, which is an additional opportunity to pick up car rental under 21 from Enterprise, Hertz, or another company with no fee.

Federal and military renters

In Canada, federal and military officials have the right to pick up cars from Alamo, Avis, National, and Enterprise starting from the age of 18. Plus, they are also not required to pay underage fees. Remember that special car rental military under 21 features are available with CFOne Card only.

Special corporate offers

Very often, some corporates, or just businesses have agreements with car rental providers. This allows their employees to rely on discount offers, which may also exclude age-related surcharges from the price.

Which car rental companies do not charge for under 21 in Canada?

Among the affordable companies, each one charges a fee from young drivers under standard conditions. However, some of them have additional opportunities to avoid underage charge. This means that if you are not tied to any particular provider, car rental in Canada under 21 may cost much cheaper. Here's how to do it:

  • CAA membership is the quickest way to avoid paying for a young driver with Hertz, as well as have a few other added benefits.
  • Militaries and federals may avoid age surcharges. The possibility of car rental military under 21 deals is not influenced by a specific provider, but can be concluded with any supplier.
  • From time to time, companies hold temporary promotions allowing getting a discount on a vehicle, or picking up car rental under 21 no fee. Therefore, periodically search in the desired location so as not to miss a profitable offer.

Why young drivers under the age of 21 have to pay a young renter fee in Canada?

According to the results of numerous studies, young drivers are 50% more likely to participate in various incidents on the road. Nobody knows why this happens: due to lack of attentiveness or little experience, but this is the reason for the increased financial risk for companies.

In turn, they want to protect themselves from possible financial losses, including an additional fee in the total rental cost. That’s why car rental in Canada under 21 is usually linked with an under 21 surcharge. Of course, with the exception of fee waiver options.

What types of car rental insurance are available for young drivers under 21 in Canada?

Insurance is what protects the traveler’s nerves and wallet. Indeed, you probably wouldn’t want to constantly think about responsibility for possible incidents due to your fault, because on vacation you should relax.

In Canada, you can benefit from several protection packages added to your under 21 car rental, and each of them has its own purpose. Let's check them in more detail:

  • Collision Damage Waiver / Loss Damage Waiver. This abbreviation says that your vehicle will be financially protected from potential damage, as well as theft. Typically, the amount of coverage is about $65,000. CDW and LDW are most often included in the rate, but sometimes suppliers remove them to consciously lower the price. You should check this in rental conditions of your company. In addition, you can opt out these waivers at the counter if you have your own coverage from a credit card provider.
  • Personal effects coverage. After purchasing this option, you can expect monetary compensation in the event your personal items, i.e. phone, laptop, or jewelry were stolen during the trip. It makes sense to ignore this option if you already have a similar domestic protection that operates in Canada.
  • Personal accident coverage. PAC insurance means you and your passengers will be protected in case of injury due to an accident. It’s a compulsory insurance package throughout Canada. Thus, in case of rejection, the company is not entitled to provide rental car for under 21 driver.
  • Liability insurance. It sometimes happens that your vehicle can cause material damage to third parties who become participants in the accident. In order not to compensate losses from your wallet, it’s recommended to purchase liability insurance. The minimum degree of protection throughout Canada is $200,000, and in Quebec - $50,000.

Do I need Collision and Loss Damage Waiver Insurance for under 21 car rental in Canada?

When traveling by car, it’s simply impossible to be 100% protected from damage. Even if you are an experienced driver, you can’t know how other road users will behave. If your vehicle will be damaged, you will be responsible.

Imagine a different situation. You travel, for example, around Toronto, and left your rental car for the night in a street parking lot. Some vandals damaged it, or even stole it. Who do you think will pay for it? That's right, driver!

You probably realized that CDW/LDW insurance is absolutely necessary for car rental under 21 years of age in Canada. It applies to mechanical damage to the car body, plastic parts, windshield, side windows, and wheels. What’s more, you will be protected from car theft.

In general, the CDW/LDW package covers damage to your under 21 rental car as a result of:

  • Collision/fire damage;
  • Natural phenomena;
  • Vandal actions;
  • Theft.

Usually, this type of insurance is already part of the total rental cost, but sometimes it may not be included to reduce the price of the car. Anyway, it’s better to clarify this issue at the booking stage.

CDW coverage has some excess limit. This means that your responsibility comes from the moment it’s exceeded.

Where can you get CDW/LDW insurance in Canada?

This can be done both when reserving on our website (it can be already included in the price) and at the counter. Another way is to use a credit card provider as an insurer. However, this is impossible if you intend to have an under 21 car rental no credit card.

Also, third-party insurance providers are suitable for car rentals under 21 in Canada. This will give you an advantage in the form of a lower price, but will increase the time spent searching for a good offer.

How long must I have held my driving license to rent a car under 21 in Canada?

Driving license is the paramount thing without which a road trip in Canada is impossible in principle. Each renter must meet the following requirements for this document:

  • Your license must be originally in the Latin alphabet.
  • As the main car rental driver under 21, your license experience should be at least 12 months at the time of pickup. But it may differ: Alamo and National – 12 months, Dollar and Thrifty - 12 months, Hertz – 24 months, Routes - 12 months, etc. Check this in rental conditions of the selected offer.

It’s important that the name of the credit card and the name on the driver’s license must match. Also, company employees may ask for an additional form of identification.

Should I get an International Driving Permit to rent a car under the age of 21 in Canada?

The IDP is a legitimate translation of your home driver's license into several additional languages, including Italian, German, Spanish, French, and English. Of course, in Canada you only need the last 2 languages.

What does the IDP give you? This document is on the list of must-have things for some companies, and without it you might be refused to pick up a rental car under 21. But this is also an additional type of identification that you can show upon request.

If it’s easy for you to get an IDP, then why not to make car rental under 21 years old as hassle-free as possible?

Will I have to pay any additional charges during the pick-up of my under 21 rental car in Canada?

Extra charges can be associated not only with the fact that you are a young driver but also with other reasons. For example, you have added a child seat, GPS navigator or snow chains to your rental car under 21.

If not, then you are not obliged to pay for anything other than an underage fee, because it already contains all possible taxes.

What rental car categories are off-limits for young drivers under 21 in Canada?

Probably the popular dream of a greater part of young people is sitting behind the steering wheel of a luxury sports car, or a huge SUV while exploring Canada. The bad news is that car rental for someone under 21 is not available with using these vehicle classes. The same applies to 7-seater minivans, vans, premium cars and passenger transport options that are off-limits for underage drivers.

Consequently, smaller cars can serve as under 21 rental car. Among them are mini, economy cars, compact, mid-size, standard and full-size vehicles.

Can someone else drive my under 21 rental car in Canada?

The companies’ policy lets having someone other than you who can drive your vehicle in Canada. Moreover, this may not be one, but several people at once – just include the Additional driver option to the rental list.

In turn, an authorized person must provide the same documents as the primary renter with the exception of a credit card – it’s shown on request. If the extra driver is not 25 or 21 years old, then he or she is also the subject of a young renter fee.

In some companies, a bank card, ID, passport and address of residence are also included in the list of required documents. Plus, an additional driver may undergo a driver check.

On our website, you can find many under 21 car rental offers in Canada with free additional driver. Usually, the cost of additional driver option is regulated by car rental companies in Canada:

  • $9.99 CAD/day with Alamo
  • $13.50 CAD/day with Thrifty
  • $9.99 CAD/day with National
  • $13.50 CAD/day with Hertz
  • $10.99 CAD/day with Routes
  • $13.50 CAD/day with Dollar

Remember: if rental car additional driver under 21 had an accident, then the main driver is still the responsible person.

Can I rent my under 21 rental car one way in Canada?

Those travelers to Canada who frequently enter such a search query as 'under 21 car rental near me' probably would like to avoid geographical travel limits. With one-way deals, this opportunity will be one step closer.

You can fly to Montreal, then enjoy an amazing road trip along the southern border of Canada, drop off your car in Vancouver, and return home by plane. Of course, in the end, you can plan the most unexpected route that will be as interesting as possible for you.

To organize such a trip you need to choose the right locations and the right vendor of your rental car under 21, because these are the factors that really matter.

For example, when picking up a vehicle in British Columbia from National or Alamo, you won’t be allowed to cross the borders of Alberta and British Columbia provinces. But crossing the US border and then returning to Canada is available.

Thrifty and Dollar are those companies whose cars may be driven everywhere in Canada, with the exception of the northernmost provinces - Yukon, Nunavut, and the Northwestern Territories.

Please note that one-ways will cost more due to the applying of drop-off fee.

Can you take a rental car from USA to Canada?

How do you like the idea of ​​saving on travel? The fact is that cars in the USA are much cheaper than in Canada. Therefore, if your travel destination is British Columbia, then it makes sense to pick up a car in Seattle and then go to Canada. What do you need for this?

  1. Choose the right company. Dollar, Hertz, and Budget allow car rental USA to Canada round trip. The next step is to contact the provider and discuss the possibility of traveling from Canada to the USA or vice versa. You will probably need to talk about your travel plans to convince the company to provide you with a car. But no problem - this is an ordinary procedure.
  2. Prepare documents. If you have prior approval from the company, then it will ask you to present the necessary documents. Your driver’s license must meet the conditions for car rental Canada under 21. Plus, a passport is required to cross the border. For residents of the states bordering Canada everything is much easier - they just need to have a Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative enhanced driver's license, which gives the right to cross the border without additional documents. Owners of tribal ID cards as well as military officials for working needs also don’t need extra forms of identification.
  3. Check your insurance. Another obstacle to getting to Canada may be the lack of special insurance. It’s required to cover you and your car while on the Canadian territory and is called the Canadian Non-Resident Insurance Card. You can get this insurance directly on the counter. You can also use your personal insurance, but only if it operates in Canada.