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Hire a car without a credit card in Australia

Sam Ficek

We’ve made hiring a car without a credit card easy

While it’s pretty easy to get around Australia’s cities by public transport, bike or foot, there will always be times when you just need a car to get around. Whether you’re picking up some furniture across town or ready for a road trip down the coast, hiring a car is sometimes the most comfortable and practical way of getting around.

To hire a car in Australia, you’ve got two main options: traditional car hire or a car sharing service like Car Next Door.

With a traditional car hire company, you’ll need to book in advance, pick up and drop off the car during business hours, and fill out some paperwork for every rental. Car Next Door is a much more flexible and convenient option. It’s free to join, and you can book cars instantly through the app. Once you’ve found a car that’s right for your trip, just follow the instructions in the app to pick up the keys and get on the road at a time that suits you.

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You don’t need a credit card to hire a car anymore

A big pain point for people hiring a car is that some car hire agencies require a credit card. A few years ago, credit cards were essential because car hire companies wanted to protect themselves should the renter accidentally damage the car, and not have the funds to cover its repairs. To do so, they put a ‘freeze’ on your card of an indiscriminate, high amount on top of your original booking fee, often only returning them at a later date once the car is home safe and sound. While this covers the car hire company, it can prove frustrating and expensive to the renter who doesn’t want or is unable to have large sums frozen on their accounts.

While some car hire companies offer the option of payment via debit card, it comes with limited conditions that are not always convenient to the renter. Some companies will only authorise debit payments at specific locations or require that an additional deposit is paid upfront. These security deposits can be up to $400, which if you’re only hiring a car for a day or two might mean the deposit charged to your card is well over 4x more than your booking. It can also take up to 10 working days after your booking to get your deposit back. This isn’t good for the purse, schedule or stress levels.

At Car Next Door, we like giving you a choice - debit cards or credit cards can be used to hire all our cars at all of our locations. We also only require a $150 security deposit on your first trip only, which is refunded within a few days of your booking ending. In today’s age, requiring a credit card for services is old hat. Financial services have moved on, and so have appetites for credit card ownership. After all, only 41% of Australian millennials today own a credit card and the numbers keep dwindling, so why continue to require it?

Simpler, easier car hire without a credit card

At Car Next Door, not only have we made hiring a car as seamless and frictionless as possible, we’ve also put into place a fair few features other rental car companies haven’t. You’ve got a huge range of cars to choose from: big cars, small cars, utes, vans, SUVs, convertibles, cars with roof racks and pet-friendly cars.

We also accept unrestricted international driving licences - no International Driving Permit required. If your licence is another language, you’ll just need to provide a formal English translation.. All bookings come with comprehensive insurance, roadside assistance and round-the-clock phone support. If anything were to go wrong, we’d have you covered. If you damage a car, the most you’d pay is your Damage Cover Liability (DCL) amount (works like an insurance excess). This amount caps your out-of-pocket expenses should (knock on wood) a worse-case-scenario happen, and you can reduce it even further by paying an optional extra fee.

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