Everything You Should Know About Renting a Car with a Debit Card

Everything You Should Know About Renting a Car with a Debit Card

A debit card car rental isn’t the most common way to pay for your upcoming reservation. Most traditional car rental agencies require drivers to use a credit card. This allows them to tack on additional charges they find out about after the rental, like tickets or minor scratches on the vehicle. But for people who don’t have a credit card or are close to their limits, they may prefer to pay for travel reservations with a debit card. 


To mitigate the risk of a debit card attached to a bank account, car rental agencies require several extra steps. Find out what they are, plus how to use Avail Car Sharing as an easier alternative for using a debit card to pay for your car rental.

How to Get a Car Rental with a Debit Card

Have you ever wondered, “Can you rent a car with a debit card?” The answer is yes, but the process is actually quite complicated when you opt for a traditional car rental agency. Whenever you try to rent a car with a debit card or cash, you’ll have some additional hoops to jump through. Here are three steps you’ll need to take in order to make it work.

Find a Car Rental Company that Accepts Debit Cards

Don’t automatically assume that every car rental company allows you to pay with a debit card. Research ahead of time to figure out which options are available. You may also discover limits on the type of car you can rent with a debit card. Some companies, for instance, don’t allow you to reserve a premium model unless you pay with a credit card. Additionally, debit card acceptance may vary depending on individual locations. 

Determine What Extra Documents You’ll Need

No matter what your checking account balance may be, most traditional car rental agencies require you to supply extra documentation in order to pay with a debit card. For instance, you may need to provide an extra form of identification in addition to your driver’s license. Some companies even make you show utility bills, personal references, and recent pay stubs. 

man and woman at avail counter borrowing car


If you’re paying with a debit card at an airport, you may also have to show proof of a return flight with a date that matches the drop-off date. Finally, you may need to provide proof of insurance, or opt to pay for coverage through the car rental agency. Most credit cards offer rental car insurance as a cardholder benefit. If you’re not using the card to pay for your rental, then you don’t have access to that perk. 

Check Security Deposit Requirements

Another factor to consider when renting a car with a debit card is any security deposit requirement. You’ll likely need to have enough money in your account to cover both the rental fees and a deposit, which varies by company. Expect it to be somewhere between $200 and $300. You’ll get that money back as long as you return the car in good condition and don’t have any other fees like speeding or parking tickets. But the funds do need to be available in your account and won’t be refunded until you return the car.

How to Rent a Car with a Debit Card Using Avail

Avail Car Sharing accepts debit cards as a formal method of payment with no strings attached. You don’t have to worry about extra documentation to prove your financial responsibility either. You just pay for your booking at the time you make your reservation. Plus, there’s no security deposit required. 


Another bonus is that Avail has locations at airports throughout the country, so your pick-up and drop-off experience is as convenient as a traditional car rental company. Plus, Avail is an Allstate company, which means full insurance coverage is included with every reservation. So even if you pay for your car rental with a debit card and don’t get free insurance as you would with a credit card, you’ll still get full insurance protection.

Final Thoughts

Renting a car with a debit card is a hassle when you choose a traditional car rental company. But when you opt for Avail, you still get the full range of benefits that every driver receives. There’s no expensive security deposit to worry about and you won’t get up-charged for insurance.


Renting a car should be an easy, fun experience. Get the full package by booking a car at one of our airport locations today.