Cheap Car Rental Whangarei 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 at Whangarei Airport

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

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!

Stu Clements

Stu Smith

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

Jim Cook

Jim Cook

Car Hire Options at Whangarei Airport

There's a range of car hire companies operating at Whangarei Airport.  The good news is that you'll find them all here. We bring together all the leading rental vehicle brands - 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.

Whangarei Heads

Car Rental Brands

At Whangarei Airport all the car rental companies we offer have check-ins the arrivals terminal. So this avoids you having to waste time waiting for shuttle transfers to off-airport depots. 

Car rental brands we offer at Tauranga Airport:

  • Avis
  • Budget
  • Europcar
  • Bliss
  • Hertz
  • Thrifty
  • Keddy

Why Renting a Car Makes Sense

If you're visiting Whangarei and staying put in town, then a rental car isn't essential. The airport is only 8 km from the centre of town and there are frequent bus services, plus shuttles and taxis.

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.

One of the key reasons for renting a car when you’re visiting Whangarei 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.

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

Maximum Choice. Best Deals.

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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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    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.

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.

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!

Tim Brown

Tim Brown

Whangarei Airport Car Rental Tips

Petrol Stations

If you're dropping off your rental car at Whangarei Airport 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.

As you can see from the map below there are plenty of petrol stations around the airport. 

Book Early

Whangarei is extremely popular holiday destinations for New Zealanders and international tourists alike.

During peak periods demand for rentals cars can outstrip supply. So to avoid missing out, it's a smart idea to lock in your booking as early as possible.

Driving from the airport

Whangarei Airport is less than 10 minutes from the centre of Whangarei 

Once you've collected your rental car, take the road out of the airport (Handforth Street). This then becomes Church Street and follow this for 2 km to the roundabout. Continue through the roundabout on Onerahi Road for 2 km. The road then becomes Riverside Drive and follows the river which is on your left. Continue 4.5 km and cross the bridge which takes you into central Whangarei.

Average economy rental price

  • January $65
  • February $69
  • March $58
  • April $50
  • May $45
  • June $46
  • July $44
  • August $43
  • September $43
  • October $53
  • November $57
  • December $68

Average rental duration

  • January 7 days
  • February 7 days
  • March 6 days
  • April 6 days
  • May 5 days
  • June 5 days
  • July 5 days
  • August 5 days
  • September 5 days
  • October 5 days
  • November 6 days
  • December 10 days

Attractions Near Whangarei

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

Poor Knights Islands

The township of Tutukaka lies beside a shining harbour. It is best known for being the gateway to the Poor Knights Islands. The town’s marina is the place to launch trips out to the world famous marine reserve - charter boats for diving expeditions depart regularly from here, while yachts and launches are also regular fixtures.

What makes the Poor Knights so special? The water is mild and warm, and clear, meaning great visibility underwater. The marine environment and the wildlife in it, being separated from the mainland and having evolved over a long period, are quite unique.

For nearly 1 km around the islands - which are millions of years old - the Poor Knights marine reserve extends beneath the surface. The ancient and rocky volcanic walls, caves, tunnels, and arches are teeming with underwater life; a myriad rare and endangered creatures can be found here. Well over 100 species of fish live around the Poor Knights and they are friendly and inquisitive, coming up close to and interacting with people while diving, snorkelling or swimming. You’ll also be awed by the sheer diversity and vibrant colours of the corals, kelp, sponges and anemones. The world’s biggest sea cave and insect are both found here. Little wonder that this protected area is in line for World Heritage status.

Even the above water portion of your trip is bound to be an adventure. The Tutukaka coast is located in the migratory path for lots of different species. On these legs of the trip (half an hour each way) you may well see bottlenose or common dolphins; even orca, pilot or minke whales off the coast. Meanwhile, hawks soar overhead, and the sound of kingfishers, bellbirds and parrots provide a natural background track.

When driving to Tutukaka in your rental car, allow 30 minutes to reach your destination from Whangarei.


Whangarei Falls

When in Whangarei, don’t miss the town’s namesake waterfall! The Whangarei Falls are approximately a 10 minute drive north in your rental car from the city centre. It’s an outstanding swimming spot and makes for some impressive photographs as a keepsake.

Whangarei Falls is part of the Whangarei scenic reserve and the Katea River - a picturesque, sheer curtain of water that plunges for 26 metres over cliffs of basalt. This area was traditionally popular with local for Maori as a prime eeling spot. The sound of warblers and wood pigeons add an extra dimension to your walk through the native bush, ferns and trees (including regal manuka, totara and nikau). There are three viewing platforms around the falls - the two platforms above the waterfall have an incredible bird’s eye outlook over the water and the forest below.

Take the loop walkway around the falls in order to get a look from every possible angle - this crosses the river via a metal bridge, and descends to the base of the falls by a flight of steps. Here you’ll come across a picnic table and more of a viewing area. It then crosses the river again then winds up the hill back to the car park, where further picnicking areas can be found. This track can be completed in about half an hour.

If you’ve got a couple of hours to spare, there’s the Sands Road Loop, which also starts from the car park. After crossing the river, this track heads towards the the A H Reed Memorial Kauri Park, then eventually onto the Hatea River Walkway and back to Whangarei Falls.

From Whangarei Falls you can also embark on longer walks to Mt Parihaka (2 hours, return) or the Town Basin (4 hours, return).

Mt Parihaka

The ancient volcanic cone of Mt Parihaka - less than 10 minutes from Whangarei in your rental car - is unmistakable. Towering at 241 metres, it’s visible from many spots in the city - the outline of the World War II memorial obelisk sitting at its peak glowing red at night.

Parihaka is also notable for being the site of a former pa (Maori village) - it would have been home to a few thousand people and today you can see the remnants of their homes, terraces, storage pits and defensive fortresses along the ridge line.

There are three walking tracks that lead up the slopes to the summit of Mt Parihaka, named after early European settlers, as well as a network of mountain biking trails. The walking tracks weave through the native bush that covers the mountain, and they are well maintained generally and easy to follow.

If starting from the carpark on Mair St, the Dobbie and Drummond tracks can be reached from the Hatea Walkway there. (Bring some bread to feed the ducks at the Hatea River!) The Dobbie Track, also known as the Hokianga Track, includes a walk through a bushy valley and a grove of enormous kauri. The Drummond Track passes a memorial plaque to Norman Drummond, who once donated 24 acres of bush to the community.

Then there’s the Ross Track, which departs from the end of Dundas St. It follows a stream up the hill, passing the entry to a little gold mine, and a detour to an old pa site that saw a bloody battle in the 1700s.

From the top of Mt Parihaka you will enjoy panoramic views over the terrain below. You can make your way down along the same route, or tackle an alternative path for something different.


Mt Manaia

Rising 403 metres above the entrance of Whangarei Harbour, Mt Manaia is part of a cluster of basalt peaks. It has a distinctive and imposing silhouette and provides some of the best views over the entire district. Located out at the Whangarei Heads, it is roughly a 30 minute drive from the town centre in your rental car.

According to Maori legend, the main rock formations around Manaia represent five people: the chief Manaia, his two children, the chief Hautatu and his wife. Manaia had captured Hautatu’s wife, and the group were all struck by lightning and turned to stone as they ran in mid pursuit.

The beauty of the coastal forest here is second to none. You can expect to see a variety of ferns, flowers, and trees around Mt Manaia, including impressive totara and kauri. The Whangarei Heads are also teeming with wildlife and birdsong: the environment is conducive for kiwi, skinks, wood pigeons, geckos, kakariki and bellbirds.

Before ascending to the jagged rocky peaks of Mt Manaia you’ll need to embark on a challenging climb, which takes around an hour to the summit. The track is in good condition and there are some steps to make negotiating the incline easier. There are several good lookout points along the way, such as the Bluff Lookout.

Once at the top there are 360 degree views in every direction - the vistas include Bream Bay to the south, Whangarei Harbour to the west and the Northland coast to the north. You can even see to the Marsden Point oil refinery, and the Hen and Chicken Islands. Along with Mt Manaia, these islands are the remains of a massive volcanic eruptions from some 20 million years ago.

Ace Rental Cars
Avis NZ
Thrifty
Jucy Car Rental
Omega Rental Cars
Hertz NZ
Europcar NZ
Snap Rentals
Budget NZ
Go Rentals
Frefly Car Hire