Cheap Car Rental Auckland Airport
* Some rental car suppliers may charge a credit card fee for amounts payable on arrival.
The best deals on up to 32 car rental brands at Auckland Airport
Just wanted to say thank you. We had a fantastic NZ trip and saved heaps
Great to deal with. We got a really good price on a Yaris that was much less than anywhere else. No complaints!
This made getting around New Zealand so much easier than when I was last here.
Car Hire Options at Auckland Airport
There's a huge range of car hire companies operating at Auckland Airport. Big-name international companies like Avis and Hertz are trusted and familiar, but there's also a large number of independent local brands, many offering very competitive prices. The good news is that you'll find them all here.
We bring together all the leading rental vehicle brands, as well as many of the independents - meaning you don't have waste time trawling the Internet for options or pay exorbitant walk-up prices at the airport rental counter. Book now and save!
For great deals on car rental at Auckland Airport it’s hard to beat MatesRates. We have the sharpest prices around. And to maximise your savings it's a good idea to book your car early, especially for travel during peak periods. Just put your travel details into the Quote box at the top of the page to instantly compare a huge choice of vehicles at the very best prices.
On-Airport Rental Brands
"On-Airport" means these rental companies have check-in desks within the airport terminal.
The big advantage of this for you is convenience and speed. Once you've checked in you can jump in your car and get going. No waiting around for transfer vans.
But it does come at a cost. Invariably the fees are higher than off airport rental companies to offset the costs of being at the airport.
If you're arriving on an international flight you'll find the rental car counters for on-airport operators located next to the arrivals area on the ground floor.
Domestic travellers can find on-airport car rental operators on the ground-floor of the multi-level car park building, directly opposite the domestic terminal forecourt.
On-airport car rental brands we offer:
Off-Airport Rental Brands
"Off-Airport" means that these car rental companies don't have check-in desks within the airport terminals and so you need to make your way to their depot.
Most provide free shuttle services and will collect you from the terminal. This is arranged when you make your booking & you'll need to let them know when you've arrived.
Some depots are conveniently close, being within the airport grounds and so just a few minutes drive. Others are off the airport grounds and so take longer to get to.
Whilst off-airport options aren't as fast or convenient as on-airport rentals, they usually are cheaper.
Below are just a few of the many off-airport operators we have available. These ones are all close to the airport terminals (3 km or less) and provide complimentary shuttle transfers from the airport terminals to their respective depot locations.
Maximum Choice. Best Deals.
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Great for backpackers like us on a tight budget. Got to do more of the amazing things NZ offers with the money we saved. Awesome!
Auckland Airport Car Rental Tips
Compare prices of on-airport and off-airport brands. If you're not in a big rush, hiring a vehicle from off-airport rental depots can result in substantial savings. It does mean however you will have to take extra time with the shuttle transfer. Transfers are usually complimentary, but limited to opening hours, so check when you book.
Stop at a nearby petrol station and top up the tank before returning your vehicle. The extra 5 or 10 minutes this takes will definitely save you money.
If you return the car with the tank not full then the rental company will charge a high price to top up the tank. These charges can be excessive, such as a $2.50 a litre surcharge on top of the fuel cost. Not a nice surprise to later find this charge on your credit card.
Conveniently, there are two 'Z' brand petrol stations open 24 hours right at the airport.
Driving from the airport
Auckland Airport is south of the city. If you're going into central Auckland, head North on George Bolt Memorial Drive (route 20A). This joins the South Western Motorway (route 20), then follow the signs. Depending on the time of day it should take you from 30 minutes to well over an hour getting into central Auckland from the airport.
If you're heading South, from the airport turn right into Tom Pearce Drive (route 20B) and follow the signs which will take you onto the South Western Motorway (route 20), then to the Southern Motorway (route 1).
Unfortunately, Auckland traffic during rush-hours can be a nightmare and mean you're stuck in gridlock. If you can, try to avoid driving during rush-hour traffic.
Getting frustrated in gridlock isn't the greatest start to a trip. Obviously, depending on your flight times you can't always avoid it, so here are a couple of options to consider.
If you're heading into central Auckland and going to be there for a day or two before travelling further afield, do you really need a car immediately?
Instead, let someone else drive and fight traffic whilst you relax by taking the Airporter Bus, a shuttle, Uber or taxi into town. Then pick up your rental car from the city when you're ready to head out of town.
This will save you stress, plus save on city parking fees and rental charges. This is especially worth considering if you'll be arriving tired after a long-haul flight. Plus safer.
Another option, if you are arriving during rush-hour, is to wait until the peak traffic is over before heading into the city or south. Instead spend some time doing a little sightseeing around the airport area. We list some ideas below.
Attractions Near Auckland Airport
A rental car gives you the freedom and flexibility to make the most of your time exploring Auckland and surrounding areas. Here are a few of the many attractions around Auckland Airport you might like to consider checking out. For more ideas, check out the Tourism Auckland website....
Villa Maria Estate
For over fifty years Villa Maria has been producing some of New Zealand's finest wines. Just a five minute drive from Auckland Airport, the Villa Maria Estate is a must-visit for wine buffs, or travelers looking for a good meal after a long flight.
The Villa Maria winery was founded in 1961 and has rapidly grown to become the country's most celebrated winery. Over the years, Villa Maria has been officially named New Zealand's top winery, as well as one of the top fifty wineries throughout the world. But fear not, Villa Maria is not just for those with bottomless wallets - the estate sells wines ranging from the more exclusive right down to the relatively cheap.
The winery offers guided tastings through its range of wines, and is open seven days a week, with tours of the premises beginning at 11am and 3pm. The site of the winery itself is an extinct volcanic crater, which allows for stunning views of the vineyard and the surrounding harbour.
The crater also creates a natural amphitheater, and so the winery is often used as a venue for local and international music acts. If you time your journey perfectly, you could spend your first or last few hours in Auckland sipping a glass of fresh local plonk as you relax to the sounds of your favourite artist.
The vineyard also contains a cafe, which serves fine local cuisine and opens for lunch seven days a week, between 11:30 and 3:30, although wine is available outside these hours, so if you've got a hankering for a little wine, pop over to the Villa Maria Estate.
Auckland Botanical Gardens
The Auckland Botanic Gardens are a frequently overlooked gem, easily accessible on Hill Road, just off the Southern Motorway.
The Botanic Gardens contain over ten-thousand plants covering sixty-four hectares of land. Many of the plants within are native to New Zealand, and the botanic gardens may be the only place you will be able to see them while visiting the country. In fact, approximately 80% of the plant species within the gardens are found only in New Zealand, so you won't find them anywhere else in the world.
As well as native plants, the Botanic Gardens also contain a wide-variety of species from around the globe, including spring blossoms, african plants, and palms. The Potter Children's Garden is a perfect location to unleash the little ones, who will be enthralled by the collection of plants and interactive features. Hands-on learning is encouraged, so fear not if your child loves to touch!
Plant-spotting aside, the gardens are also the perfect place to clear your lungs and take a stroll. As mentioned, the park grounds cover sixty-four acres of space and are bursting with well-maintained walking tracks, each dotted with informative panels on the surrounding plants.
If your stomach gets sick of its colourful surroundings and demands nourishment, the gardens also contain the Cafe Miko, open for brunch, lunch and afternoon tea. From inside the visitors' center, the cafe also gives spectacular views of the gardens to enjoy while sipping on your cuppa.
The gardens are just a twenty minute drive from Auckland Airport, and provide a unique insight into the native flora New Zealand is so famed for. Parking is free.
Butterfly Creek is a relative newcomer to the list of attractions near Auckland Airport, but it has quickly established itself as a good day out for families. The Creek is located on Tom Pearce Drive, so close to the airport that you'll barely have time to get out of first gear before you're pulling into its car park.
Butterfly Creek is obviously a perfect location for both budding and experienced lepidopterists (people who study butterflies), as well as those simply interested in checking out a few creepy-crawlies. In addition to the butterflies, the creek is also home to a range of other wildlife: monkeys, alligators, insects, tarantulas, and even goats. The wildlife is (thankfully) split into several areas, including a petting-zoo, a butterfly encounter and an insect area.
In addition to simply viewing the animals at rest, Butterfly Creek also offers almost hourly animal encounters, where spectators are able to see animals feed and interact with staff. The crocodile feeding is particularly enthralling.
A miniature train runs around a wetland situated behind Butterfly Creek, and this leaves its station hourly. A balcony overlooks the train-tracks, giving parents the perfect opportunity to snap a few shots and take a few deep breaths while they guzzle down the coffee they furiously ordered from the adjacent cafe. The creek also contains a full playground and an adventure rope-course for boisterous kids to blow off a little steam.
As with most attractions, Butterfly Creek contains a cafe-restaurant, which offers hot and cold cabinet food as well as cooked meals, all at a reasonable price.
Butterfly Creek's opening times vary throughout the year, and several attractions do require tickets, but these are all very reasonably priced.
Rainbow's End Theme Park
Located a mere 15-minutes drive from Auckland Airport, Rainbow's End is a great destination for families looking for a fun day out.
Rainbow's End first opened in 1982 as a small park containing mini-golf, bumper-boats and a handful of other attractions. Since its inception the park has gradually grown to include a multitude of additional rides and attractions, as well as new restaurants. Unlike more crowded theme-parks overseas, Rainbow's End is generally line free, allowing you or your kids to keep hopping on your favourite rides practically at your leisure.
The most prominent ride at the park is the Fearfall, an 18-storey tower that hoists riders into the sky for a brief view of Manukau, before hurtling them back toward the ground. The park also contains New Zealand's only corkscrew coaster and the Goldrush, a mining themed rollercoaster sure to have you yee-hawing as you swerve through the depths of its darkened tunnels. The Log Flume is a local favourite, and has left many a visitor soaked head-to-toe, so be sure to bring a towel.
Those with younger children, or those simply looking for a quieter experience, will be more at home at Rainbow's End's Kidz Kingdom - an area especially designated for children's rides. Rides within include a carousel, train, and a miniature rollercoaster.
The park is also home to several go-kart tracks, as well as dodgems and numerous arcade machines. There are also multiple eateries scattered about the park, mainly serving cheap, easy fast-food and soft-drinks.
Rainbow's End is open every day of the year, bar Christmas. It's located west of Auckland Airport, in Manukau, on the corner of Manukau Junction and Great South Road. Just look for the Fearfall tower.