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Compare Hamilton Car Rental Deals

Big savings on car hire at Hamilton Airport

Compare the best Hamilton Airport car rental deals from Avis, Hertz, Budget, Thrifty & Ezi Car Rental.

  • Low prices
  • Choice of brands
  • No booking fees
  • Instant confirmations
  • Free cancellation on most cars
  • Free amendments on most cars
4WD rental

Better prices and variety than going direct

Heather H New Zealand

Best deal we could find after looking at all the rental car websites.

Lorenz G Australia

Easy and efficient. Competitive prices with good choices. Worth a try.

Tom H England

Car Hire Options at Hamilton Airport

There's a small number of car hire companies operating at Hamilton Airport. You'll find them all here and can easily compare their best deals in one place. This means you don't have waste time trawling the Internet looking for options. Or have to pay exorbitant walk-up prices at the airport rental counter.

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 Search box at the top of the page to instantly compare a huge choice of vehicles at the very best prices.

On-Airport Rental Brands

At Hamilton Airport all the car rental companies have check-in counters. So, unlike many airports, there are no "off-airport" rental companies which require you taking shuttle transfers to their depots.

Car rental counters are located on the ground floor in the Arrivals & Departures area. You will find them opposite the baggage carousel.

Use our price comparison search tool to find the best prices for these on-airport car rental brands at Hamilton Airport:

Maximum Choice. Best Deals.

  • All the best deals in one place from different rental brands at Hamilton Airport.
  • Instantly compare the best deals. No need to waste your time checking out multiple websites.
  • Easily filter results by price, brand, or type of vehicle.
  • And if you're finding it difficult to decide, check out the customer ratings to hear from those who've been there and done that.

Best car hire rate I could find. Recommended to a friend and she said same.

Jane A New Zealand

Thanks for making things easy. Found a 4WD for much less than we had seen on other sites, and booked it — no worries.

Mark W Australia

Easy to compare the different rental companies in one place. Lots of choice which is great. Prices seemed cheaper than other sites including when I looked at booking direct

Glen M New Zealand

Hamilton Airport Car Hire Tips

Why renting a car makes sense

The airport is 14 km from the centre of town and there are several shuttle services available, plus taxis.

The cost of a shuttle depends on the number of passengers, your destination and the shuttle company. A shared-ride — which can mean a slow trip with multiple stops as people get dropped off en route — is around $30 for one person.

Taxis again vary by destination and company, but anticipate paying at least $60.

With those prices in mind, hiring a rental car may well be a better option for you consider. In addition, having a rental car gives you the flexibility and freedom to travel at your own pace and roam further afield exploring the area. We have some suggestions at the bottom of the page.

Driving from the airport

Hamilton Airport is just 14 km South of Hamilton's CBD and a straight forward drive that usually only takes around 20 minutes. However at peak times it can take 35-40 minutes.

Once you've collected your rental car, follow the road out of  the airport and turn right onto State Highway 21. Follow the road for 2.3 km and at the T intersection turn right onto State Highway 3. Follow this for 10.5 km when the road will join onto Cobham Drive which runs alongside the Waikato River. Follow this northwards for 2.5 km into the centre of Hamilton.

Return with a full tank

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.

If you're driving from Hamilton there are petrol stations enroute to the airport. Depending on your route, the closest to the airport are Gull and BP stations at Glenview on State Highway 3. If you're taking State Highway 1 the closest petrol stations are Caltex and Mobil in Hillcrest.  

If you're coming from Cambridge there are a number of petrol stations, including a Z Petrol at 167 Victoria Road which is open 24 hours.


Eddie W New Zealand

Great value! I'll be telling my friends.

John W Australia

Thanks for making things easy. Found a 4WD for much less than we had seen on other sites, and booked it — no worries.

Mark W Australia

Attractions Near hamilton

A rental car gives you the freedom and flexibility to make the most of your time exploring Hamilton and surrounding areas. Here are a few of the many attractions you might like to consider checking out. For more ideas, check out the Hamiton & Waikato Tourism website....

Waitomo Caves

The green hills of Waitomo conceal an underground maze of caves, created by streams that shaped the limestone over millennia. There are around 300 identified caves all up, containing amazing rock columns, caverns, stalactites and stalagmites. Notably, they are also home to luminous native glow worms. The visual effect is striking: twinkling grottos, and the appearance of starry ceilings and walls within the caves.

Innovative locals have built on the natural offerings that Waitomo has to offer and devised no shortage of adventurous ways to explore these subterranean marvels. The most straightforward way to visit the caves is on a walking tour at Ruakuri Cave, on which you’ll hear about the myths and legends surrounding the area. Or take a gentle boat cruise through the caves, floating through the darkness while listening to commentary on the caves and their history.

Alternatively, the caves can be seen from an inflatable rubber tube on the water, via a blackwater rafting expedition. Feeling particularly daring? You can even zip line or abseil through the Waitomo Caves. These adrenaline-packed options can take up to a full day as you squeeze around corners and through narrow passages. These trips are actually surprisingly accessible, as long as you have a reasonable level of fitness and a game attitude!

There’s plenty to see above ground, too. The nearby Mangapohue Natural Bridge features an impressive 17-metre limestone arch; at night this track lights up with luminescent glow worms. A walkway near the Waitomo Museum of Caves leads you past a smattering of outlandish rock formations and outcrops.

Just an hour out of Hamilton via rental car, the Waitomo Caves are easily reachable for an adventurous day out.

Otorohanga Kiwi House

Been itching to see a kiwi? Then head to the native bird park at Otorohanga’s Kiwi House. At the not-for-profit Kiwi House, you can see this nocturnal bird close up at any time of day within special enclosures. At the Night Zone, you’ll find great spotted kiwi and little spotted kiwi, which you won’t see anywhere else — complete with burrow cameras.

Kiwi have been bred at Kiwi House in 1971, and other endangered native birds are bred here too. It is run by the Otorohanga Zoological Society, which is wholly devoted to native wildlife conservation. All proceeds go back into the Kiwi House and its breeding programmes.

The Kiwi House also happens to be home to the biggest dome aviary in the country. Walk among the trees and keep your eyes peeled for wood pigeons and waterfowl, kea and kaka. Here you’ll find tuatara, a unique and ancient type of reptile, on display, plus geckos and skinks.

Along with the nocturnal kiwi houses, enclosures and walkthrough aviary, at this native park there are ponds and wetlands — a full gamut of environments. Bring the whole family and spend a few hours wandering around the grounds.

Entry includes keeper talks, as well as feeding displays at the hands of Kiwi House staff. There are several feeding times for kiwi, kea, kaka and kakariki at regular intervals throughout the days, as well as for eels and blue ducks. Keepers will dispense lots of fascinating facts about the animals and answer any questions from the audience. It’s a surprisingly intimate experience!

The Kiwi House is located in the town of Otorohanga, which is easily reached in your rental car in just under an hour from Hamilton.


Visiting the real-life Shire in Matamata is a must. Here, nestled within sprawling private farmland, is where you’ll find the Hobbiton Movie Set, which featured in the original The Lord of the Rings trilogy, and was then rebuilt for The Hobbit films.

The Hobbiton experience begins with a drive through a 1,250-acre sheep farm with views across to the Kaimai Ranges. You’ll see Bag End, where Frodo and Bilbo resided. Explore the hobbit holes, see the Party Tree, the mill, bridges, gardens and many other structures that were painstakingly constructed and then recreated for Peter Jackson’s movies. It’s not hard to imagine fantastic creatures frolicking through Middle earth in this slice of paradise.

Your Hobbiton experience then continues on. At the Green Dragon Inn — the favoured watering hole for hobbits — you are entitled to a complimentary beverage from the exclusive Southfarthing range. Feeling peckish? Traditional pub fare is available to order off the menu. Afterwards, stop in at the Shire Store. The atmosphere is lively and there’s an array of products you can buy and take away. Among these are handcrafted items from Weta Studios, as well as books, cloaks and other themed memorabilia.

Hobbiton Movie Set tours last for about 3 hours and depart throughout the day from the town of Matamata, which is just half an hour from Cambridge in your rental car.

And if you find that Hobbiton has completely captured your heart, you can book a rustic farm stay in Matamata and extend your time here.

Zealong Tea Estate

New Zealand has only one tea plantation, and that is the unique Zealong Tea Estate, featuring beautiful views and lush gardens. This one-of-a-kind attraction encompasses a visitor centre, pavilion, and what’s known as the Camellia Tea House.

Zealong tea is organically farmed, with no chemicals or sprays involved during the process. The Waikato’s rich soil and pure air create the perfect combination of conditions, resulting in thick, flavourful and fragrant leaves that are hand picked by expert staff. They are then processed in the on-site factory. A single serving of Zealong tea can yield as many as half a dozen separate infusions. Each Zealong pack can be traced back to the block and the day of its picking.

Not surprisingly, it was a tea lover who decided to start the country’s sole tea plantation. It began with a few imported seedlings from Taiwan and has now swelled to a 40-hectare estate with thousands of sweet tea plants.

Zealong has enjoyed so much success locally that it has expanded to China, with a flagship store in Beijing. A Harrods deal has also been inked, so expect the Zealong estate to continue prospering and growing even bigger as export demand increases. Prominent figures such as Camilla Parker Bowles and the First Lady of Japan have all had the experience of sampling Zealong tea.

At the Zealong plantation, you can learn all about the history of tea and taste the freshest cups of oolong to be had for miles. Indulge in high tea, lunch, or book a traditional tea ceremony experience at the Camellia Teahouse (from Tuesday to Sunday).

The Zealong tea estate is an easy drive from Hamilton in your rental car — just 15 minutes away.