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The fall season is a great time to take a road trip, especially to watch the leaves turn. And while taking a trip in a convertible is a great idea, an electric car could be a better choice. After all, wouldn’t you want to save the environment while peeping some leaves?

However, it’s natural to be wary of renting an electric car for a road trip. In case you’re unsure, check out these five scenarios when renting an electric car is a good idea.

1. Renting an electric car from a national rental chain could be a good idea

Car rental pick up and drop off offices area
Car rental off offices | Getty Images

Although peer-to-peer rental platforms like Turo are a great way to get into a rental car for a long trip, it could be a better idea to rent one from a national chain if possible. Life Hacker says, “If you’re traveling long distances or run into any issues on your trip, being able to contact a company with branches throughout the country with questions, or for a replacement car, may provide some peace of mind.”

In that case, check out your local Hertz, Enterprise, or Avis to see if there are any electric cars in stock before checking out Turo.

2. If you can get an electric car with over 200 miles of range

Hyundai electric cars on display at a dealership.
Hyundai is going all-in on EVs | Hyundai

Most national rental car chains will carry electric cars with over 200 miles of range. We recommend opting for one with at least 250 miles of range to quell any range anxiety. It will also ensure you can go farther down the road on a single charge.

3. If the route you’re taking has plenty of EV charging stations

Before renting an electric car and setting out on your trip, we recommend plotting the route and noting how many charging stations there are along the way. The more, the merrier for added peace of mind. However, if you notice that there aren’t many charging stations on the route, you may want to rent a hybrid or a gas-powered car.

4. There are fast-charging stations along the way

A Tesla EV charges at a Tesla Supercharger
A Tesla EV charges at a Tesla Supercharger | Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

When plotting your route, if you notice there are plenty of fast charging stations along the way, that’s a good thing. Most electric cars can charge from 20% to 80% in around 30 minutes with a fast charger connection. In that case, if your road trip route has one or more fast chargers, you could be good to go.

5. Gas costs more than charging an EV

A blue Rivian R1S at a charging station in the desert at sunset. The Rivian R1S price isn't that bad compared to other luxury SUVs.
Rivian R1S | Rivian

When planning your road trip and considering whether you should rent an EV or gas-powered car, it could be useful to calculate the potential gas costs. AAA has a gas cost calculator that can help. If the cost of gas seems like it would be more expensive than charging an EV, then renting an electric one could be the better way to go.

Renting an electric car for a road trip takes careful planning

Ultimately, renting an electric car for a long road trip takes careful planning. Being able to plan the route and estimate the costs and range will let you know whether or not it’s a good idea to rent an EV. If it doesn’t work out, we suggest checking out a fuel-efficient convertible instead.


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