Orbit's Travel Blog - 07.09.2022.

Car Hire Without A Credit Card

Have you decided to rent a car on your trip? A good choice, but before booking a vehicle abroad, find out if a rental agency requires a Credit Card from you, or it is also possible to rent it with a debit card.

Last updated on 07.09.2022

Can you rent a car with a debit card?

Suppose you have already asked yourself this question. In that case, you are probably already aware that most car hire companies require a credit card before making a reservation. They guarantee that in the event of car hire, you will have sufficient funds to cover the rental costs, as well as in the event of damage to the vehicle. However, this requirement is often more conditional on vehicle insurance than on paying for rental prices.

Before you pick up the vehicle, the car rental agency will take a deposit from you. It wants to guarantee that the car will remain in the same good condition as before the rental.

Car hire without a credit card

Since the price for renting a car varies considerably, it is difficult to give the exact amount of the deposit for renting a car.

Either way, Orbit Car Hire can advise you on how you can also rent a vehicle with a debit card. Still, in this case, you will probably be treated differently than if you rented a vehicle with a credit card. Usually, the Rent Car provider will ask you to take out additional insurance and thus reduce your liability to the car. First, however, it is worth looking at the rental terms for the car rental partner through whom you want to rent a car. Then, you will find all the necessary information and any restrictions that may arise from the reservation with a debit card.

How to rent a car without a credit card

When you search for offers, you need to read the payment requirements for the car hire deal you have found, as debit cards can be allowed only on specific vehicles. For expensive and high-end cars, a credit card is required. Still, some companies are more flexible with smaller and cheaper vehicles. 

On-Orbit, you can press the Rental Details button under the car image. There you can find payment options. You can also read if there are special requirements for debit cards by pressing Payment and Charges. You will find the payment requirements for each rental company and each vehicle. 

Car hire with debit card on Orbit

Payment methods at Orbit Car Hire

To make this simple, you can find the steps to find a debit card offer; 

  1. Search for offers by selecting location, date and times
  2. Press "Rental Details "for the offer you have found
  3. Press "Payment and Charges "and read the requirements. 
  4. If the offer allows debit cards, you can secure the booking.

Why don't car hire companies accept debit cards?

In some countries, you can hire a car with a debit card. However, you cannot do this through most companies because the provider may be left without payment if the renter has no funds in the account. With a credit card, the car rental provider guarantees that it will receive these funds before pick-up begins.

Because a debit card provides less protection, you will probably need to take additional insurance, as this will reduce your liability to the hired car. You will be charged the total amount if you leave a deposit via debit card. You will receive a refund after renting the vehicle if the car is in the same condition as it was before the rental. You may also incur additional costs, such as currency exchange rates, if you rent with a debit card.

Suppose you are not sure which credit cards a rental car agency takes. In that case, it is best to check their Terms and Conditions. Still, we can say that in almost all cases, they accept Master Card and Visa, and for other cards, it is always good to check the rental conditions.

What car rental companies allow debit cards?

Most car rentals will require a credit card, and some may allow debit cards with additional requirements. 

  • Enterprise
  • Europcar
  • Alamo
  • Locauto 
  • Thrifty
  • Hertz
  • Centauro

Popular locations for debit card car hire

Portugal Greece
Spain Italy

Debit and credit card wallet

Debit Card Car Hire Questions 

Do I need to use the same credit card to book and pick up the car? 

The answer is that you can use different cards, but the card must always be issued in the main driver's name. For example, on the Orbit Car Hire website, you can make a reservation with a debit or credit card (Master Card or Visa). Your information will not be passed on to the car rental agency. 

What does it mean when a car rental company "blocks" my credit card?

Leaving a deposit with your credit card does not mean that your funds will be deducted from your bank account but will only be frozen. You cannot dispose of these funds until you have completed your trip with the rented vehicle. If you damage the car during the rental period, the company will charge these costs to the main driver's credit card. If everything is fine with the vehicle, you cannot use these funds until the rental company releases the security deposit.

Why must the credit card be in the name of the main driver?

The main driver is the one who signs the rental contract and who is legally responsible for the hired car.

It happens every day that people all over the world are looking for car rental options. Unfortunately, they also often encounter an obstacle when a credit card is a must before you make a reservation for the desired car. In some cases, hiring a car with a debit card is also possible. Still, in this case, you will probably have to take additional insurance, which will bring more costs. Therefore, we advise you to always read the terms and conditions under the car rental agency to avoid unnecessary inconveniences before picking up the hired vehicle.

Even if you fully pre-paid your rental fee through Orbit Car Hire, you will still need a credit card at the pick-up location as the main driver. 

Paying a rental car with a debit card

How do I know my card is a credit card?

First, it's good to know if you've had a credit card made in your name in the past. Then, when you open your wallet, you will find many cards. Among them, you will probably also find a loyalty cards, gift cards, and debit cards.

The debit card and credit card mostly look the same, containing 16 digital numbers and an expiration day.

The difference between a debit and a credit card is that when you use a debit card, you spend money by drawing on funds you have already deposited at the bank. In contrast, a credit card allows you to borrow money from the card issuer up to a specific limit to purchase items or withdraw cash repaid later (usually once a month).

What documents do I need to pick up my rental car?

  • Booking Confirmation (Your voucher)
  • Valid driver's license (International, if required)
  • A valid credit card in the name of the main driver
  • Personal ID or passport

Rental car security deposit

The car rental company will require a security deposit when you hire a car. That is why you may find that if a car rental allows debit cards, they will often have additional requirements like purchasing their insurance. So it will minimize the risk with no excess amounts. 

Types of cards that are accepted to hire a car

You can be assured that you can pay with a MasterCard and Visa at all locations. However, if you have other types of cards, please read the payment requirements before making a reservation. 

Cards without embossed numbers are most likely to be rejected despite becoming more popular in recent years. 

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