9 Best 5 Dollar a Day Car Rentals

5 dollar a day car rentals

Are you looking to rent a car for a day? What are your best options for 5-dollar-a-day car rentals? Let’s find out if you can get lucky to drive off with a rental car at that price.

Car rental services are a great way to get around town or go for short road trips. However, sometimes these services get quite expensive. For this reason, when we hear of cheap rental cars, we are always eager to jump in and enjoy the lower prices.

But how low can these car rental prices go? Well, as it turns out, it’s quite low. That’s right! Sometimes, you rent a car for as low as $10 a day or even $5. You’ve probably seen some of these offers and wondered if these rental companies are serious.

The truth is, if you want it cheap, you’ll undoubtedly get it. But it’s not easy. So, where do you get these genuine offers for cheap day rental cars?

This article explores some of the best 5-dollar-per-day car rentals you can check out, as well as why they put the prices that low.

Top 5 Dollar a Day Car Rentals

Here are your best options if you are looking for a 5-dollar rental car.

1. Dollar Car Rental

Dollar Car Rental Logo

First on our list of 5-dollar car rental options is Dollar Car Rental. Dollar Car Rental isn’t a small company, as it serves domestic and several international markets, including Europe, Canada, and the UK. However, the offers they sometimes offer are amazing.

Whether it’s the $1 car seat deals or low base rates, Dollar offers more than most people know. And, while times have changed, making it harder for you to find these cheap car rental deals, this company is among your best choices.

Dollar Car Rental is part of the Hertz group, comprising Thrifty and Hertz, meaning that you are dealing with a legitimate company. To be fair, Dollar is one of those car rental companies offering great rental services at relatively low prices.


Sixt Logo

Sixt, founded over a century ago in Munich, Germany, is one of the most popular car rental companies globally. The company, which started with only three vehicles, is now present in 105 countries around the globe, covering over 2,200 locations.

However, being big and popular doesn’t mean they are all expensive. As you’ll discover, it’s one of the rental companies where you can still get small dollar-day car rental deals. Therefore, if your deal was to find 5-dollar-a-day car rentals, this might be a great place to look.

And even if you don’t find such a low offer, you will certainly find great deals that you’ll love. What I love most about the company is its user-friendly app. This makes your search for car rental pretty effortless.

Also, their website is superb, and you can quickly locate the type of car you want. Everything is well laid out, meaning you won’t have difficulty locating available deals.

See Related: Top Car Rental Search Engines

3. Avis

Avis Logo

Another popular car rental brand in the US is Avis. The truth is, Avis is not that cheap. While it’s relatively affordable, it’s still higher than many other car rental brands.

However, from time to time, they have amazing discounts that can keep their prices significantly low. The best thing about the brand is that it’s reputable and affordable. And it hasn’t positioned itself as a low-cost or high-cost service, meaning you can get almost anything you want here.

Avis offers quite a wide range of car rental types, meaning you’ll probably find something that fits your needs and budget. Some of the main car rental options include:

  • One-way airport car rental
  • Van rental
  • Luxury car rental
  • SUV rental
  • Sedan or car rentals

In addition, you can get any size of car you need, whether economy, compact, standard, intermediate, or full-size. And the discounts here are quite attractive. For instance, who wouldn’t want 30% taken off their car rental cost?

Therefore, while some vehicles might seem too pricey, some are pocket-friendly. And, factoring in the discounts, the costs can go even lower.

See Related: Top Car Rental Search Engines

4. Thrifty Car Rental

thrifty logo

Do you want to adventure in an amazingly nice car but on a convenient budget? Thrifty Car Rental offers just the right deals for that. It might not offer the 5-dollar-a-day car rentals, but you’ll surely be amazed by how low they can go.

Thrifty is among the world’s biggest car rental brands, covering over 4,000 locations globally. It was established in 1958, and the Hertz Corporation is its parent company. Therefore, when booking a car with Thrifty, the brand’s legitimacy is a non-issue.

You can choose from the numerous discounts and deals by just visiting their site. And, if you fail to find current deals that interest you, you can keep checking as new deals keep coming up.

See related: Do You Need A Rental Car in New Orleans?

5. Enterprise Car Rental

enterprise logo

Sometimes, the best deals will come from the biggest brands, while other times, the smaller ones take the day. Enterprise Car Rental is one of the big brands. But it’s known for excellent services, discounts, and deals.

The brand is recognized globally, meaning you can hire a car with them in several parts of the world. As for domestic services, you can rent cars almost anywhere.

The brand is under the Enterprise Group, which owns two other major car rental brands, National and Alamo. Usually, these brands will offer similar car prices, although it’s good to check because one may be offering better discounts.

The good thing about the brand is that it offers special discounts for several groups, including military, veterans, and government hires. So, if you fall under these categories, your renting rates are well-discounted.

Even better, you earn points when you join the Enterprise Plus program. And these points can eventually lead to free rentals. Now that’s awesome. It also means that while you might not get the 5-dollar-a-day car rental option, you might earn points and get a car free.

6. Budget

budget car rental logo

As its name goes, this is among the car rental brands, offering the cheapest rates. For instance, you’ll easily get a one-day car rental for $35. And with attractive discounts, which can hit even 35%, the prices can get quite low.

However, you should note that the rates vary mainly depending on location, rental period, and the type of payment made. For instance, if you pay as you make the reservations, you tend to get better deals.

Even better, Budget car rentals have a weekend discount program. You can win a full discount for the third day of the program. This means you pay absolutely nothing during the third day.

Now, this is more impressive than even the $5-a-day option. However, this offer isn’t available for all cars. Therefore, ensure you research the cars that attract this kind of discount, lest you get disappointed.

Best Places to Cheap Car Rental for the Day

7. Turo

Turo Logo

Some may wonder why we’ve mentioned Turo on this list, especially since it’s not a rental company. Well, the platform might be your best bet for cheap car rentals.

Generally, Turo is a peer-to-peer rental car option, allowing you to get the best deals from individual car owners. In other words, Turo is like a broker connecting car owners with individuals interested in renting their cars.

This means you’ll not be getting your car from a specific rental company but rather from the owner. According to Insider, Turo is the best platform for peer-to-peer car rentals.

The good thing about this method of getting a car rental is that you have a chance to negotiate with the car’s owner. And the terms and conditions will also be laid down during the negotiation. Typically, the agreement depends on your needs and the owner’s desire to rent the car.

With Turo, there are also no specific pick-up or drop-off locations. These are mainly agreed upon between the involved parties. And, since the marketplace is quite extensive, you can get almost any car you want, whether cheap or luxurious.

8. ZipCar

Zipcar Logo

ZipCar is also a car-sharing platform operating under the Avis-Budget Group. However, unlike the other companies under this umbrella, its operations differ. But it’s still one of the best ways to get cheap day car rental offers.

For starters, you get to book a car near you no matter where you are. With Zipcar, you’ll quickly access information on available rental vehicles near you and book as easily and as fast.

Booking a car with Zipcar requires you to complete these three simple steps;

  • Register
  • Drive on-demand
  • Return the car

To register, all you need is your driver’s license (valid), and the process takes just a few minutes. You can book your desired car in minutes and get on with your errands or trip. Trips here are round trips, meaning you can’t book a one-way trip.

After your trip, you return the car to the place as agreed with the owner.

9. Kayak

Kayak Logo

Now, this is the world’s top car rental marketplace. You can access hundreds of choices from various car rental agencies, making finding the best day-to-day car rental deals easier.

The platform works quite differently from Turo and Zipcar. While these two connect you to the car near you through the owners, Kayak deals with car rental companies. This way, you can access numerous company offers on a single platform.

The great thing about this platform is that it eliminates the hassle of researching individual companies looking for good rental deals. With Kayak Car Rentals, you only need to enter your specifications on the site. Then, the best deals available are displayed based on what you are looking for.

Kayak is the easiest if there is a simple way to find a 5-dollar day car rental. Whether you want a single-day rental car or a few days one, the platform offers these options.

What’s the deal with the 5-dollar-a-day car rentals?

Couple Driving a Car on a Highway

While 10 dollar rental cars are hard to find, 5-dollar ones are even harder. As you can agree, this is another level of cheap rentals. So, why would a car rental company offer 5-dollar car rental options? It’s certainly not profitable!

While there might be several reasons, the main one revolves around supply and demand. For instance, car rental demand drops significantly when the north gets too cold. And as we all know, prices will mostly drop if demand is low while supply is high.

Generally, changes in weather in some areas bring down rental prices. Also, companies will try to move their cars to areas with higher demand. In this attempt, they offer cheap same-day car rentals, especially for travelers looking for one-way rentals.

Setting prices extremely low attracts customers, enabling these companies to move their cars. For this reason, the pick-up and drop-off locations determine the prices.

For instance, if you live on the East Coast and wish to rent a car for a day to Florida, here are a few car rental locations that present you with cheap daily rental cars with the earliest possible pick-up dates.

  • Albany (ALB) – 4th September
  • Syracuse (SYR) – 4th September
  • Portland (PWM) – 10th October
  • Boston (BOS) – 10th October
  • Burlington (BVT) – 10th October
  • Raleigh (RDU) – 23rd October
  • Charlotte (CLT) – 23rd October

Drop-off is usually made at any of the following airports.

Best Tips for Getting Cheap Car Rentals for a Day

Before diving into companies offering the best 5-dollar-a-day car rental, let’s look at some tricks you can use to get cheap car rentals. Therefore, if you are planning a short day trip, here is how to save money.

1. Avoid the Airport

I know getting a rental car right from the airport is quite convenient. But have you ever thought of the cost implication?

Due to airport surcharges, picking a car from the airport can be expensive. The surcharges, which apply as fixed or percentage dollar figures, will usually be charged as Customer Facility Charges and certainly raise your overall car rent.

Generally, these charges are a few dollars a day, but in some instances, they can hit three figures depending on how far you are going with the car. For this reason, before picking up that rental from the airport, ensure you’ve explored cheaper options in the city. But ensure you’ve factored in taxi or rideshare costs.

2. Research Online

Ample research ensures you get the best deals for car rentals or other purchases. Fortunately, comparing various offers is easy, especially with almost every company’s online presence.

So, before anything else, do your online research and compare every car rental service’s prices and benefits. And as I said, this can be pretty easy. With a platform like Kayak Car Rentals, you only need to visit the site and compare – they have everything you need under one roof.

If you want the cheapest car rentals in the US, Kayak is where to get the deals. After identifying the best offer, book the car online at the particular rental company’s site.

Sometimes, the deals there might even be cheaper.

3. Look for Brands Offering Discounts

Competition is high, especially with many rental car companies in the market. This means it’s possible to find a rental car company offering discounted car prices at any given time. Taking advantage of this is undoubtedly a clever move to save some money.

Also, if you only know the big names in town, you must research the smaller brands. These might be offering better discounts. For example, Hertz, Budget, and Enterprise are not the only rental car services; look for smaller ones with excellent offers.

4. Work with One Driver

Opting for more than one driver might mean more cost when renting a car. Usually, most car rental companies include an extra charge for that additional driver. The charge is normally set at $12 a day for some companies, while others charge $13.

When you opt for a single driver, you’ll pay at least $12 less daily on your rental car. However, it’s also possible to include another driver without paying the extra charge. Ensure the other driver is a spouse, partner, or immediate family member.

Some companies waive the extra charge for such individuals. The only requirement is to ensure the driver’s licenses read the same address.

5. Choose Economy Cars

Luxury comes at a cost. And even in car rental services, the concept also applies. If you want it cheap, choosing an economy car might be your best bet.

All you need to do is ensure that what you book is sufficient for your traveling party. Again, you don’t want to book a car so small that the vacation becomes too tiring for everyone – especially if it’s a family trip. 

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Kyle Kroeger

Kyle Kroeger

Kyle Kroeger is the Founder and Owner of ViaTravelers.com. He is a full-time traveler and entrepreneur. Kyle started ViaTravelers.com to help travelers experience a fully immersive cultural experience as he did initially living in Italy. He's a converted finance nerd and Excel jockey turned world wanderer (and may try to get lost on purpose). After visiting 12 countries and 13 national parks in a year, he was devoted to creating and telling stories like he'd heard.

Plus, after spending more time on airplanes and packing, he's learned some incredible travel hacks over time as he earned over 1 million Chase Ultimate Rewards points in under a year, helping him maximize experiences as much as possible to discover the true meaning of travel.

He loves listening to local stories from around the world and sharing his experiences traveling the globe. He loves travel so much that he moved from his hometown of Minneapolis to Amsterdam with his small family to travel Europe full-time. Read more about his portfolio of work.