Last Updated on January 16, 2021 by Billy

pet-friendly-rental-car

Can you bring your dog in a rental car? The majority of major rental agencies allow pets in their vehicles at no extra charge—but there is a big potential gotcha. If you return the car with hair and odors, expect to pay a cleaning fee of up to $125.

Some rental car companies require that pets be in an approved carrier while in the car. For other rental car companies, policies vary by location. We recommend calling ahead of time to confirm the rental car company’s pet policies and any potential fees.

Beware a Rental Car Cleaning Fee

Want to bring your dog in a rental car but don’t want to get hit with a huge cleaning fee? Take these steps to make sure you return your car looking and smelling great.

Stop and go. When traveling with your pet, give your pet plenty of opportunities to eliminate outside the car.

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Cover up. Bring a special pet-seat-cover to protect the back seat from puppy claws and paws. Don’t want to invest in gear? Even throwing down a sheet can make a difference.

Keep your pet safe and secure. Consider a dog crate to keep your dog safe in the car and to prevent it from shedding all over the car. Alternatively, get a harness and seat belt to keep your pet secure.

Pay for a cleaning. The rental car company will not look the other way if you return the car with dog hair or odors. Many car washes offer DIY vacuum services for a few dollars or, better yet, interior cleaning services for under $30, often including a choice of deodorizing scent. Consider ponying up for this service, as the cost is much less than what the rental car company would charge for detailing.

Gather proof. Save your receipt from a cleaning service in case the rental car company tries to charge you for another detailing. Take multiple before-and-after photographs of the interior of the car for proof that you returned a clean, undamaged car.

Rental Car Company Pet Policies

ACE

Pets are fine to ride in vehicles. However. renters are responsible to pay for any damage or necessary cleaning.

Alamo

Alamo allows pets in its rental vehicles. Customers need to keep pets crated and return their rental car in clean condition and free of pet hair to avoid cleaning/detailing fees. Service animals can ride in the vehicle without a carrier.

Avis

Avis does not have a strict pet policy, but please be sure to return your rental car in clean condition and free of pet hair, etc. to avoid cleaning fees.

Budget

Housebroken pets are welcome in your rental car, just like in your personal car. Although Budget doesn’t assess an extra fee for pets, pet owners will incur an additional charge for any damage caused by animals, or any special cleaning required as a result of shedding or accidents.

Dollar

Pets can ride in the vehicles with no additional fees. Dollar recommends that you secure your pet in a pet carrier, pet car seat, or similar safety restraint. Renters will pay for any damage caused by the pet. To avoid cleaning charges, return your vehicle clean and free of pet hair.

Enterprise

Pets can ride in rental vehicles. Customers need to keep pets crated and return their rental car in clean condition and free of pet hair to avoid cleaning/detailing fees. Service animals can ride in the vehicle without a carrier.

Fox

Pets are welcome. There are no fees or deposits. Renters will pay for any damage or necessary cleaning.

Hertz

Policies differ by location. Some allow domestic pets to ride in the vehicles with no additional fees. Renters will pay for any damage caused by the pet. To avoid cleaning charges, return the vehicle clean and free of pet hair.

National

Pets are allowed in rental vehicles. Customers need to keep pets crated and return their rental car in clean condition and free of pet hair to avoid cleaning/detailing fees. Service animals used by customers with disabilities are allowed in the vehicle without a carrier.

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Payless

Policies vary by location. Contact the individual location to inquire.

Silvercar

Any pets traveling in a Silvercar vehicle must travel in an airline-approved pet carrier at all times. Designated service animals accompanying customers with disabilities are not subject to the pets policy. Although Silvercar doesn’t charge an extra fee for pets, pet owners will incur an additional charge for any damage caused by animals/pet carriers/harnesses, or any special cleaning required as a result of shedding or accidents.

Sixt

Sixt touts its pet-friendly policy. At some locations, you can arrange a “pet car rental,” which may be a minivan or SUV with extra room for your animal companion.

Thrifty

Pets can ride in the vehicles with no additional fees. Thrifty recommends that you properly secure your pet in a pet carrier, pet car seat, or similar safety restraint. Renters are responsible for any damage caused by the pet. To avoid cleaning charges, vehicles should be returned clean and free of pet hair.

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