Prices for hiring a car vary from $25 per day for a used car from Rentabomb (be prepared for a VERY used car) to between $50 and $80 per day from the more established companies. Hiring for 7 days or more will usually result in a discounted rate. It is recommended that you check on each company’s website for their frequent internet-only promotions.
To hire a car you will need a valid license (from your home country is fine), your passport, and a valid credit major card. Some companies will request a cash bond (or temporary hold limit, usually around $200, on your credit card). This bond acts as insurance that you will return the car and keys, and will be refunded when you return the car.
Picking up a car from one location and returning it to another (even interstate) is common, and should present no problem with the larger, national companies provided you make your intentions known at the time of rental. This can occasionally work to your advantage in the way of reduced costs. For example, if you are making a one-way trip to Sydney, you should call several companies and inquire, as most will have cases in which a vehicle dropped-off at their location needs returning to its home depot.
If you are in the immediate area of the CBD or inner suburbs, you can ask for your car to be delivered to you and/or picked up. While some companies include this service for free, most will charge you extra. However, this service can be much more convenient and cheaper than locating the rental car outlet, and arranging a taxi back to your accommodation.
No Australian hire cars come with drivers. If you would like this service, you should call a limousine company or similar service. These will cost you about $400 per day and it is exceedingly unusual for anyone to hire one for anything less important than weddings, debutantes, or Valentine’s Day events.
The biggest car rental companies in Australia will be able to assist you with finding a vehicle on terms that best suit your intended length of stay. (The numbers listed are for toll free calls from anywhere in Australia)
Hire Car Companies
1300 132 607
1300 362 848
1300 367 227
If you are in the city and have a membership with a Car Sharing service, a full 24 hours will cost you around $75 including petrol, but you will have to pay about $0.15 per kilometre after the first 100, as well as a monthly membership fee.
The service is simple to use. You are issued with a swipe card that unlocks the car at your prebooked time. The keys are inside as are the fuel cards for you to refill the fuel (the cost of fuel is included in the hire). There are three such Car Shares in Melbourne. However, it is highly recommended you check locations before signing up to a service, as the cars are generally concentrated in the CBD and may not be available where you need them. Flexicar (link below) is the most expensive, but also has the greatest number of cars in the greatest number of suburbs.