As the years go by, classic cars that are in working condition become more difficult to find. Compared to modern used cars, these cars are also more expensive to purchase. If you’ve ever been curious about what it’s like to drive a Ford Thunderbird or just want to relive your childhood in one of Buick’s Regal station wagons, you can always rent a classic car.
People often rent classic cars for use in film production, parties, and weddings. However, it’s a little different than renting out a car made in the last few decades. You won’t be able to find a vintage car on Kayak or other popular car rental places: you’ll have to do a little more research.
Classic car rental companies
While it’s not uncommon to rent a classic car, it’s definitely in less demand than newer cars. Because of this, you’ll have better luck looking for a rental company that specializes in renting out vintage cars. If you run a search for ‘classic car rental’ with your city at the end, you’ll be able to find some rental companies in your area.
As with all rental companies, make sure that you read the reviews beforehand. With a smaller company, it can be a little harder to find info about its reputation. If the company has a social media page, try looking there to see what previous customers had to say.
Ask an older friend about renting their classic car
If you have a friend in their late 50-60s, try asking them if they (or one of their friends) own the car you’re looking for. You’d be surprised how many people like to hold on to classic cars, even if it’s not the driver’s regular vehicle anymore. They may also let you skip the rental fee, but if that’s the case, return it with a full tank as a token of appreciation!
Websites like Turo and Vinty also have a good selection of cars, all offered for rent by individual owners rather than a large company. The owners list their cars, set their own rules about what you do with the car, and set their own price per day or hour.
You may be able to find a better deal because the rates are so variable, however, be aware of the insurance age requirements. You must be 21 to rent a car if you if have existing insurance and 25 if you don’t.
Check the vehicle’s condition
Before you take the car out for a spin, make sure you go over it with the sales associate or the person who’s renting it to you. Look for anything that the owner may have left out in the photos listed online.
Additionally, it’s always good practice to snap some before photos. This way you don’t get charged for any dings or scrapes that happened to the car before you rented it. Older cars can be unpredictable, so take the time to get inside and ensure that the headlights work, the air conditioner is functioning, the windows can be rolled down, and the steering controls are not too stiff.
Be prepared to make a deposit on the rental car
If the company or individual doesn’t require you to pay the rental fee upfront, you’re going to have to put down a deposit. Each amount will be different depending on what kind of car you’re renting and how long you’ll need it.
Most classic car rentals require a security deposit of $500, though some may charge more. This is a temporary charge that will be made on your credit card to cover any incidentals. Once you’re done with the car and return it without any damage, the deposit is refunded back to you.