Securing a car rental in Seattle is a great way to ensure access to the stunning areas around the metropolis, as well as the chief attractions within the city, like Pike Place Market or the Woodland Park Zoo. There are nearly 20 car rental car locations in Seattle, so you can easily grab your rental at any stage of your trip. And with nearby major roadways like Interstates 5, 90, and 405 all providing direct access to areas in and around the city, day trips are simple to map out. You’ll want to stay alert on these major roadways, since they can get congested, especially during rush hour. When you’re exploring downtown, you’ll want to park your vehicle and either walk or take public transport. There is plenty of parking space in the city, so you won’t have trouble finding a spot.
While visiting, is it worthwhile to rent a car while visiting Seattle?
Driving in Seattle can be a tricky endeavor, since there are several factors that impact traffic—from an abundance of cyclists and pedestrians, to rainy weather, to public transportation vehicles, and rush hour, which typically run from a little after mid-afternoon into the early evening, as well as in the early mornings. While the city is very walkable and offers public transportation options, if you want to get the most out of your trip to the Pacific Northwest city, cheap car rentals in Seattle are critical, since they’ll grant you access to peripheral areas, like Puget Sound, Tacoma, and Bellevue, all of which are within a two-hour drive. There is also ample parking available in Seattle, making car rentals simple and cost-effective, especially if you’ve opted for an economy car rental.
What different driving laws should I keep in mind while driving in Seattle?
While you may want to check with Seattle’s department of motor vehicles for any recent changes in traffic laws before your trip, there are a few standard traffic guidelines you will want to adhere to while driving car rentals in Seattle. For example, as with most of the U.S., individuals with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08% or higher are prohibited from operating a motor vehicle—there are heavy penalties for non-compliance with this law. There are also penalties for those who do not wear seatbelts, and parents should note that all children under the age of 13 must ride in the back seat, and children aged eight and younger must be strapped in using appropriate restraints. Many Seattle car rental companies offer children’s seats as an add-on. Seattle also has speed guidance requiring that drivers do not exceed speeds that are one-third lower than regular residential limits on unmarked residential (non-arterial) roadways, and less than half the national residential limit on unmarked arterial roadways. Using wireless devices, including hands-free devices, is illegal while driving in Seattle, so make sure not to call or text anyone while on the road. Pedestrians and cyclists always have the right of way, even when they are not in a marked crosswalk. On some freeways, you may see high occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes, which you can use if you have at least two people in the vehicle. It is always best to check with Seattle’s department of motor vehicles for recent law changes before picking up your rental vehicle.
Can I cross the border with a rental car from Seattle?
Travelers who reserve car rentals in Seattle often like to cross the border and travel into Canada, as it is such a short drive away from the city. Almost all rental car companies will allow you to do this, but make sure to check with your specific company of choice beforehand. If you would like to drive Seattle car rentals across the border, you’ll need to have a few pieces of additional documentation with you. For example, you’re required to have a non-resident insurance card to go to Canada, which can usually be acquired directly through the rental car company. You’ll also need to make sure you have a passport. You may use a passport card from the United States, as this allows you to travel internationally by land.
Can you rent a rental car in Seattle without a credit card?
When you book car rentals in Seattle, whether it be a passenger van rental, an economy car rental, or an electric car rental, you have a few different payment options. Most car rental locations in Seattle prefer that customers pay with a major credit card. Some branches do not accept debit cards or a prepaid charge card in person, but may accept them for making reservations online. You may also be able to pay for your rental with cash. Keep in mind that while you may be able to use alternative payments for the rental itself, some companies will still require you to use a credit card for the deposit. If you don’t pay with a credit card, you may be asked to provide some additional documentation when picking up your rental. It is usually best to contact the company ahead of time to verify which payment methods are accepted and what the exact process will be. If you do pay with a credit or debit card, make sure that it is in the same name as the individual who will be driving.
What documents does an international traveler need to rent a car in Seattle?
To rent a vehicle as an international traveler, even cheap car rentals in Seattle, you’ll be asked to provide the company with a few different things. Some companies will specifically ask for you to have an international driver’s license, while others will accept licenses from foreign countries if the key information is written in a Latin-based alphabet. If this is not the case, you may be able to provide a certified translation of the document. You will always want to have your passport on hand, as most companies will need to make a photocopy of this and keep it with your file. Most companies require customers to be at least 21 years old to rent a car. If you’re under the age of 25, you may also need to pay an underage driver’s fee.