Cheap Car Rental Palmerston North Airport

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* Some rental car suppliers may charge a credit card fee for amounts payable on arrival.

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The best deals on car rental brands at Palmerston North Airport

Save money on your car rental like thousands of other smart travellers

Just wanted to say thank you. We had a fantastic NZ trip and saved heaps

Customer review - Cheryl Rhodes

Cheryl Rhodes

Great to deal with. We got a really good price on a Yaris that was much less than anywhere else. No complaints!

Customer review - Stu Clements

Stu Smith

This made getting around New Zealand so much easier than when I was last here.

Customer review - Jim Cook

Jim Cook

Car Hire Options at Palmerston north Airport

There's a range of car hire companies operating at Palmerston Airport. Big-name international companies like Avis and Hertz are trusted and familiar, but there's also a 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!

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.

Palmerston North

Car Rental Brands

At Palmerston 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. 

Avis, Hertz, Budget, Thrifty, and Europcar check-in counters located near the exit of the terminal building.

Car rental brands at Dunedin Airport:

  • Avis
  • Budget
  • Europcar
  • Keddy
  • Firefly
  • Hertz
  • Thrifty
  • Keddy
  • AutoEurope

Why Renting a Car Makes Sense

One of the key reasons for renting a car when you’re visiting Palmerston North is the freedom and flexibility it offers. 

With a rental car you’re free to explore at your own pace and on your schedule - not someone else’s. 

If you're visiting Palmerston North and staying put in town, then a rental car isn't essential. The airport is only 5 km from the centre of town and there are frequent bus services, plus shuttles and taxis.

Massey University, one of the key reasons bringing people into Palmerston North, is on the opposite side of the city to the airport and about 11 km away.

Public transport can be great and a real cost saver. BUT the problem is it severely constrains where you can go. And when. If you’ve got limited time, do you want to waste it standing around waiting for buses? We didn’t think so!

Taxis are another option. They give travel flexibility but relying on them can quickly become painfully expensive as fares add up.  

Low daily rental rates plus unlimited kilometres means that hiring a rental car is usually your most cost effective option and allows you to make the most of your limited time.

We offer some suggestions at the bottom of the page about places around Palmerston North you might want to visit. Having a rental car makes getting to them easy.  

Maximum Choice. Best Deals.

  • Depending on the time of the year, you'll find up to 9 different car rental brands here.
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    Instantly compare the best deals from all the car rental companies in one place. No need to waste your time checking out multiple websites.
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    Easily filter results by price, brand, or type of vehicle.
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    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.

Great value - thanks. Definitely will recommend you to my friends.

Customer review - Phil Dwyer

Phil Dwyer

I found your site when my mother needed a rental car for her visit. Easy and quick to use, and she was very happy.

Customer review - Paula Connor

Paula Connor

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!

Customer review - Tim Brown

Tim Brown

palmerston north Airport Car Rental Tips

Petrol Stations

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.

Topping up your rental car's tank before you drop it off back at the airport is not a problem. Being so close to town means there are plenty of petrol stations nearby.

The closest petrol station is Gull and this is open 24 hours. 

  • Gull
    999 Tremaine Ave, Roslyn
  • BP
    26 Malden St, Roslyn
  • Caltex
    777 Tremaine Ave, Roslyn

Driving from the airport

Palmerston Airport is just 5 km from the city and a straight forward drive that usually only takes 10 minutes.

Once you've collected your rental car, follow the road from the airport for 0.5 km. At the roundabout take the second exit into Airport Drive for just over 1 km to the next roundabout. Continue straight onto John F Kennedy Drive for 2km and then turn left onto State Highway 3 which goes into the centre of town (just over 1.5 km).

Average economy rental price

  • Jan $62
  • Feb $69
  • Mar $58
  • Apr $51
  • May $46
  • Jun $46
  • Jul $44
  • Aug $43
  • Sep $43
  • Oct $49
  • Nov $49
  • Dec $55

Average rental duration

  • Jan 6 days
  • Feb 6 days
  • Mar 6 days
  • Apr 6 days
  • May 5 days
  • Jun 5 days
  • Jul 5 days
  • Aug 5 days
  • Sep 5 days
  • Oct 6 days
  • Nov 5 days
  • Dec 5 days

Attractions Near palmerston north

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

Mokai Canyon and Rangitikei River

Jump in your rental car and head straight for the Mokai Canyon (approximately an hour and a half from Palmerston North) if you’re after thrilling adventures at altitude. The Mokai Gravity Canyon is a unique activity operating over the Rangitikei River in the heart of the gully.

In this adventure playground you can jump off the highest bridge bungy in the country (80 metres), free fall into the gorge (a 50 metre dive) or ride the 1.1 km flying fox, which can reach speeds as high as 160 km per hour.

Further up along the Rangitikei River you can go white water rafting. This particular stretch of the river is considered one of the top grade 5 rafting trips - not just in New Zealand but in the world. This is some of the best technically challenging water you’ll find anywhere. Day trips, over night trips and multi day trips are all options.

The River Valley Lodge in Taihape caters specially to adventure seekers. You can tackle the Mokai Gravity Canyon, bunk down at the lodge for the night, and then head out white water rafting the following day.

For a lighter version of white water thrills, canoeing past the flats, viaducts, camp sites and under the rope swing and bungy is a great way to experience the Rangitikei River and the exceptional scenery of the Mokai Canyon. Stopping at different points you will be able to walk to waterfalls, native bush and even the Rangitikei Boulders - mysterious round rocks peppered among the forest, not unlike the spherical Moeraki Boulders in the South Island. Depending on the length of the trip, departure points are from various locations progressively further down the river.

Tui Brewery

When you’re in this part of the country it would be remiss to skip visiting the famous Tui Brewery in Mangatainoka. The Tui brand - known for its tongue in cheek ‘Yeah Right’ marketing campaigns - is a major player in the beer market today.

The Tui brewery first opened in Mangatainoka in 1889. As it expanded, a brewing tower was built in 1931 so that gravity could be harnessed to transform malt into beer. While it is no longer used for this specific purpose, the tower remains a registered historic place.

At Tui HQ you will find a veritable shrine to the brand. Take a look around the museum (entry is free). At the merchandise shop you can pick up more Tui paraphernalia than you could ever have dreamed of. There is even a cultivated Tui ‘national park’ surrounding the complex with native flora and fauna.

There is lots to see inside the Tui Brewery and plenty of photo opportunities galore. Learn about the Tui brand and how its beers are brewed on a brewery tour. Tours are at 11 am and 2 pm daily, and bookings are essential These include three beers and a Tui glass to take home. They run for about half an hour. Covered shoes are required in terms of footwear. Linger in the bar, which opens out to a garden area complete with native tui birds.

Another Tui brewery option is a basic tasting, held at 10 am and 4 pm daily. Again, three beers are included, plus a glass to take away.

At the end of it all you may have worked up an appetite! Fortunately, the onsite Kiwiana cafe at Tui HQ offers a varied menu and can cater to large groups as well with a backyard BBQ lunch or dinner.

Mangatainoka is just half an hour from Palmerston North - an easy drive in your rental car.

New Zealand Rugby Museum

Rugby is our national sport and the sole subject of the New Zealand Rugby Museum in central Palmerston North. Here, the heritage and folklore of the game take centre stage, along with the stories of some of the sport’s greatest heroes.

The museum houses more than 40,000 pieces of rugby memorabilia, from coins and whistles to the very first All Black jersey and oldest rugby ball. The treasured First XV represents 15 of the most significant rugby mementoes on earth.

The legendary boot of Don Clarke, still caked with dirt from Lancaster Park - is on display here, dating back to his epic matches against the Springboks. A cap from the early ‘Native’ tour to Great Britain is one of only four in existence, as most were buried with their Maori owners. A ball from the All Blacks’ tour of California, promoting the sport, is signed by by the team, who dominated the American side in San Francisco. A stuffed kiwi and its wooden travel case was once the mascot of the ‘Invincibles’ All Blacks team on their tour of France and Great Britain.

There are four different zones inside the rugby museum. Rugby Relics is a decade by decade historical record of the sport in New Zealand, outlining how it has shaped the nation and continues to do so. The Discovery Library is a meditative place for researchers to delve into archives, or material from individual collections. Rugby Tribes is a dynamic area devoted to the diversity of customs and cultures that surround rugby. And the Have a Go section is an interactive place where you can test your ball skills with game based challenges - leaping, kicking and tackling, and seeing how you stack up against some of history’s greatest players.

Upgraded for the 2011 Rugby World Cup, the museum is a place to experience sporting culture in all its glory - the first national rugby museum in the world and recognised as an important institution and resource.

Te Manawa

Te Manawa is tasked with preserving the heritage of the Manawatu region. It is home to many treasured collections of sacred Maori artifacts, and New Zealand art and history - both natural and social. It is divided into three key sections: Life (the museum), Art (the gallery) and Mind (science), which display a host of revolving local and international exhibits; entry to the first two is free. It is the only regional museum in the country to blend art, science and history in this way. The museum, art gallery and science centre were combined in 2000.

Te Manawa’s storehouse encompasses around 55,000 items in total. The science area spans some 300 educational and interactive exhibits, exploring everything from communication and electricity to colour, time and biology. It is constantly being added to and expanded. There are wildlife displays with frogs, fish, insects and glow worms too.

The Te Manawa art gallery centres around modern New Zealand art from the second half of the 20th century on, including painting, photography, prints, sculptures, ceramics and installations. The 1970s decade is especially well represented here. Te Manawa focuses on supporting and putting the spotlight on emerging artists, especially Maori and Polynesian artists or works that have ties to the Manawatu region.

With so much to keep visitors young and old alike occupied, you could easily while away several hours at Te Manawa. Te Manawa is located in central Palmerston North, between the Globe Theatre and the Palmerston North Convention Centre. Within the Te Manawa courtyard also lie the dual historic buildings of Totaranui Settlers Cottage and Awahou South Schoolhouse.