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Explore Northern Territory’s capital city
The Northern Territory is a vast and unique region of Australia, with its capital at the very top end of the continent. Make the most of your time in this tropical city by booking a Darwin car hire. Discover where Asian influences blend with Aboriginal culture amidst a modern cityscape, and prepare for a unique and adventurous experience.
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Quick tips for your car hire Darwin Airport
Darwin continues to grow both upward and outward. While traffic isn’t too heavy in the smallest populated capital city of Australia, construction is common and therefore it’s best to pay attention to all road signage while exploring Darwin in your car hire and keep the road rules in mind:
- Drive on the left-hand side of the road.
- Slow down at roundabouts and pedestrian crossings.
- Expect slower cruising along the Esplanade and areas of heavy foot traffic.
- When raining, slow down on wet roads and always use the headlights.
- Check weather updates especially during the wet season (October to April) for the rare but possible chance of a tropical cyclone.
- Find both free and paid parking spaces for your Darwin car hire on most city streets.
- If you’re heading out of the capital, be sure to plan your route beforehand to maximise safety.
Pick up your Darwin car hire and hit the city
Darwin Airport is Australia’s tenth busiest airport, with an international and domestic terminal open 24/7 with two simple levels. After exiting your plane, follow signs to baggage claim where you’ll find your designated rental car company counter. Check in, make any last-minute add-ons if necessary, then grab your keys and be on your way with your Darwin Airport car rental. Where to head first? Here are just a few of the many unique activities available to every visitor.
Exploring downtown in your Darwin rental car
For city dwellers who love to wine and dine, highly-rated restaurants are everywhere you look in downtown Darwin.
- Sit oceanfront with a glass of local shiraz while feasting on Asian delicacies. Authentic Southeast Asian eats are everywhere thanks to the city’s close proximity to Indonesia.
- Stretch your legs on the oceanfront Esplanade where restaurants intertwine with shops, hotels, parks, and beaches.
- Check out numerous WWII military bunkers dotted around the area.
- Get up close and personal with crocodiles at Crocosaurus Cove.
- Hang out at the Darwin Waterfront Precinct where you can access a sandy beach and wave pool amongst bars and restaurants.
Each attraction is a short drive away in your Darwin car rental.
Exploring further afield in your Darwin car hire
For those looking to explore more, multiple historic national parks are within a few hours’ reach, as well as a number of water activities.
- If you’re visiting during the dry season, the Mindil Beach Sunset Market cannot be missed. Spend the night sampling an array of different cuisines and shop incredible local crafts.
- Explore Kakadu National Park, a renowned UNESCO World Heritage site.
- Visit the lush Litchfield National Park where vine forests hide water holes and waterfalls.
- Check out Charles Darwin National Park, only 10 minutes away in your car rental.
- Those with sea legs can choose from a number of tours including fishing experiences, sailing trips, and even overnight options to the Tiwi Islands.
Car rental Darwin: Booking the right vehicle
Compare from at least ten Darwin Airport rental car depots and select your must-have features to fit your needs. The streets of Darwin are similar to other major cities, but if you plan to explore outside of these areas you may want to book a 4WD rental car from Darwin Airport.
Accessing certain areas of the national parks requires 4WD, so choose a partnered brand like Hertz Darwin Airport to book one.
Detailed planning is a must for the Outback so on top of packing your car hire with extra supplies, have a detailed map and plan out petrol station stops with backup options.
Always make sure to choose a vehicle that works for every driver—both automatic and manual cars are available at Darwin Airport.
Want a different kind of tour without staying at a hotel? Browse GoSee's motorhome rental deals and experience 'home-on-wheels' while roaming around the cities of Sydney, Melbourne, or Brisbane in a campervan.
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Car hire Darwin Airport: Frequently asked questions
How much does it cost to hire a car at Darwin Airport?
The daily rate for a car hire Darwin depends on the time of year and the type of vehicle you choose. As it is a remote location, prices tend to be a bit higher than in other Australian cities, particularly with the supply challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Prices may fluctuate depending on car rental brand deals, demand, and length of rental time. Compare prices now on our easy-to-use search engine and book in advance to get the best rate.
What is the cheapest car hire agency at Darwin Airport?
Find budget-friendly car rentals at Bargain car rentals Darwin Airport and Budget car hire Darwin, Dollar, and Thrifty. Use our search engine to compare value and features relevant to your Darwin car hire experience. Do note that a little extra can go a long way for added convenience or luxury.
What car rentals are at Darwin Airport?
Darwin Airport offers a large range of car rental brands both onsite at the airport or a short free shuttle bus ride away. Choose from a wide variety of car hire services including both local and international brands such as Avis, Alamo, Apollo, Budget, Dollar, Europcar Darwin Airport, Hertz, Keddy, National, Thrifty, and more. With such a varied mix, it’s easy to find exactly what you are looking for in a Darwin Airport car rental.
Which car hire companies in Darwin have updated their vehicle cleaning and safety policies because of coronavirus (COVID-19)?
Due to COVID-19, many car hire suppliers have included an enhanced detailed vehicle cleaning to ensure safety for all customers and passengers. You will notice that almost every company has added this feature to each vehicle at no additional cost. To find this information, view the free benefits in the car rental details or simply tick the enhanced cleaning box on the filter section. If you have any questions or concerns regarding coronavirus safety policies, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our 24/7 phone line or the online live chat.
Can I collect a car from Darwin Airport and return it somewhere else?
Picking up a car hire from Darwin Airport and dropping off to another location is common in the Northern Territory, although there may be some restrictions. Depending on the service provider a one-way fee may be charged for your drop-off. Due to COVID-19, many of our partners are restricting access across Australian states. More information can be found under the rental terms located on each vehicle option.
Can I collect and return my vehicle after hours?
After-hours pick up and return may be available with your car rental Darwin, but it must be arranged with your chosen partner provider. By selecting your desired pick up and drop-off time in the search bar, you will find car hire options available to you and the specified terms. If you do choose after hours for collection or return, please be aware that you must find your own way to the airport or depot if the office is not onsite. Also, make sure to add on your extra items such as full-coverage insurance, extra mileage, baby seats, GPS, etc. as you won’t be able to do so at pick up. For more details, see the rental terms.
Where are the best places to park in Darwin?
Finding parking for your rental car is easy throughout Darwin. During the week most parking spaces require a fee between $1.30 to $2.50 per hour from Monday to Friday, 8am to 5pm. The city of Darwin has created a map showing the areas for parking on their website as well as a smart parking feature that allows you to see real-time available spaces throughout the city so you don’t need to waste your time driving around. Best yet, parking is free and unlimited on weekends! If you’re heading to the Esplanade, you’ll find parking bays lining the streets. If you are taking your Darwin car hire outside the city to tourist attractions, you’ll find free parking for visitors at most destinations.
What’s the speed limit in Darwin?
Throughout Darwin’s city centre, expect to find a speed limit of 50km/h. This may change due to construction, school zones, and suburban areas. The speed limit may reach 60km/h on main roads and/or highways, increasing to 110km/h outside the city limits. Check the Northern Territory web page for more information on speed limits.
How far is Darwin Airport from Darwin city centre?
Darwin Airport is located northwest of the city centre, a 20-minute drive in your airport car hire. During peak times, there may be additional congestion on Highway One and the time may increase to 30 minutes.
Are animals allowed?
Many of our partner providers allow pets in rental cars, but before you book, make sure to reach out to the desired brand to ensure it is allowed. Some depots will incur an extra charge.