When to book

Costa Rica car rentals

Driver's age: 26-65
Thu 27-6
Thu 4-7

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Cheap car hire in Costa Rica

People carrier
Passenger van
Pick-up truck

Top tips for hiring a car in Costa Rica

  • Car rental in Costa Rica is perfect if you want to head to the beach with family, visit a remote rainforest, or if you just want an easy way to get from the airport to your accommodation. For more space and the ability to discover the mountains, a four-wheel drive or SUV is ideal; but if you are driving along the major roads, a saloon will suffice. If you want to explore the coast, a convertible is best for soaking up the sun.
  • Costa Rican laws about car seats for children are stricter than those in the USA. When you rent a car to or from an airport in Costa Rica, your child must be secured in a car seat if they are shorter than 110 cm (43 inches). Larger children are required to use a safety booster seat until they are 12 years old or 145 cm (57 inches). You will have the option to rent a car seat or booster along with your rental car, which will cost around 2,924 SVC (5 USD) per day per child’s seat. Hertz and Sixt offer these optional extras.
  • Crossing international borders is forbidden when you rent a car in Costa Rica. However, some car rental companies will let you drop off your car in Costa Rica, cross the border on foot and pick up a new car on the other side of the border for a fee of around 29,585 SVC (50 USD).
  • The main benefit of renting a car in Costa Rica is the freedom it brings. Rather than wasting time waiting for public transport, you get to maximize your vacation time. Consider taking a road trip from La Fortuna to Monteverde, a 91-mile scenic route through a cloudy forest reserve.
  • Book your rental car in Costa Rica at least 1 day before your trip in order to get a below-average price
  • Standard rental cars in Costa Rica are around 11% cheaper than other car types, on average

FAQs about hiring a car in Costa Rica

  • What is the most popular car hire in Costa Rica?

    Standard (Nissan Qashqai or similar) is the most frequently booked car hire type in Costa Rica.

  • What is the best car hire company in Costa Rica?

    Based on ratings and reviews from real users on KAYAK, the best car hire in Costa Rica is Alamo (8.1, 120 reviews).

  • How can I find car hires near me in Costa Rica?

    Take a look at our extensive car hire location map to find the best car hire deals near you.

  • What is driving like in Costa Rica?

    If you are planning to rent a car in Costa Rica, you need to remember to drive on the right-hand side of the road. You will notice that all road signs are in Spanish and that some roads may be unmarked and not signposted. There are several toll roads that connect major cities, including Puntarenas and San José, as well as airports. You can pay for tolls in local currency or US dollars. It is commonplace for local drivers to use their horns to alert other road users of their whereabouts.

  • How old do you have to be to hire a car in Costa Rica?

    You must be at least 18 years old to rent a car in Costa Rica. You do not need an international driving permit, but must have had a valid driver’s license for at least a year. You will need to present your license and your passport to your car hire company. You are permitted to drive with your home country’s driving license for three months; beyond that, you will need to apply for a Costa Rica license.

  • How much does petrol cost in Costa Rica?

    Petrol prices in Costa Rica are around 692.98 SVC (1.17 USD) per liter and 2589.22 SVC (4.43 USD) per gallon. All petrol stations in Costa Rica are government-regulated, meaning that the prices are the same, so you don’t need to shop around. You will find that petrol stations are full-service. If you are traveling a long distance, fill up in advance to avoid running out of gas, as stations are pretty far apart.

  • What are the speed limits in Costa Rica?

    The speed limit in Costa Rica is measured in kilometers and varies throughout. The minimum speed on a highway is 40 km/h (25 mph), with a maximum of 120 km/h (74 mph). Unless road signs indicate otherwise, the limit on secondary roads is 60 km/h (37 mph), while in town and city centers, the speed limit is 40 km/h (25 mph). If you are driving close to schools and hospitals, be aware that the limit is 25 km/h (15 mph).

Car rental directory

  • alamo

    Alamo car hire locations in Costa Rica

    51 Locations

  • national

    National car hire locations in Costa Rica

    51 Locations

  • enterprise

    Enterprise Rent-A-Car car hire locations in Costa Rica

    50 Locations

  • sunnycars

    Sunnycars car hire locations in Costa Rica

    50 Locations

  • adobe

    ADOBE car hire locations in Costa Rica

    32 Locations

  • easycar

    easyCar car hire locations in Costa Rica

    26 Locations

  • adoberentacar

    Adobe Rent A Car car hire locations in Costa Rica

    25 Locations

  • avis

    Avis car hire locations in Costa Rica

    21 Locations

  • amigorent

    Amigo Rent A Car car hire locations in Costa Rica

    19 Locations

  • budget

    Budget car hire locations in Costa Rica

    19 Locations

  • economy

    Economy Rent a Car car hire locations in Costa Rica

    18 Locations

  • flexways

    FlexWays car hire locations in Costa Rica

    16 Locations

Good to know

Most popular car type


When to book a rental car in Costa Rica

Average daily price per month
Car hire prices as pick-up date approaches

The rates displayed include all taxes and fees for hire cars for the class listed and were found by KAYAK users in the last 48 hours. Offers are subject to change and may not be available on all car hires listed or dates of travel. Some hire car providers charge additional fees for other services (GPS, infant car seats, etc.). Please check the website of the respective hire car provider.