The dos and don’ts of renting a car abroad

3 min readApr 4, 2023

Traveling to a new country is an exciting experience, and renting a car can be an excellent way to explore the local sights and sounds. However, renting a car abroad can also be stressful and confusing if you’re not familiar with the local rules and regulations. To help you navigate the process smoothly, we’ve compiled a list of the dos and don’ts of renting a car abroad.

Do: Research local traffic laws and regulations

Before renting a car, it’s essential to research the traffic laws and regulations of the country you’re visiting. Different countries may have different road signs, speed limits, and driving rules, so it’s crucial to familiarize yourself with these before hitting the road. This can help you avoid potential accidents and traffic violations.

Don’t: Assume your license is valid in all countries

Your driver’s license may be valid in your home country, but it may not be valid in other countries. Some countries may require an international driving permit (IDP) to legally drive on their roads. Make sure to check the specific requirements of the country you’re visiting to avoid any legal issues.

Do: Check for hidden fees and charges

When renting a car abroad, be sure to read the rental agreement carefully and check for any hidden fees or charges. These may include extra insurance, additional driver fees, or fuel charges. Be aware of these fees to avoid any unexpected expenses.

Don’t: Rent a car that’s too big or too small

When renting a car, make sure to choose a vehicle that’s appropriate for your needs. If you’re traveling alone or with a partner, a small car may be sufficient. However, if you’re traveling with a family or a group, you’ll need a larger vehicle to accommodate everyone comfortably. Make sure to choose a car that’s the right size for your needs.

Do: Take photos and videos of the car before and after rental

To avoid any disputes over damages or charges, it’s a good idea to take photos and videos of the car before and after rental. This can help you prove the condition of the car before and after your rental period, ensuring that you’re not held responsible for any pre-existing damages.

Don’t: Forget to familiarize yourself with the car

When renting a car, take the time to familiarize yourself with the vehicle’s features and controls. This includes understanding how to operate the lights, wipers, and other essential functions. This can help you avoid accidents and other issues on the road.

Renting a car abroad can be an exciting and rewarding experience, but it’s important to do your research and be prepared. By following these dos and don’ts, you can have a stress-free and enjoyable driving experience on your next overseas adventure.




WiseCars is a car rental broker staffed by people who have worked in the online car rental industry for over 20 years.