Raleigh Durham Airport car rental

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GoSee North Carolina with a Raleigh Airport car rental

Pick up a car rental at Raleigh Airport and get exploring this diverse and cultured state capital. Centrally located in North Carolina and forming one corner of the Research Triangle with Durham and Chapel Hill, Raleigh is known for top-tier technology and education. Rounding out its studious reputation with fantastic arts and entertainment options, there is an abundance of museums, galleries and great places to shop, dine, drink and play. Get a deal on RDU car rental and find out why Raleigh consistently ranks as one of the best places to live in the USA. 

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Pick up:
Chicago - O'Hare, Denver Airport + 5more
Drop off:
Chicago - O'Hare, Denver Airport + 5more
15 May 2022 - 15 June 2022
Minimum hire period: 3 days

Car rental Raleigh Durham Airport pick up locations

Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU) serves not only Raleigh but the whole Research Triangle region of North Carolina. It is centrally located between Raleigh and Durham, and provides ample passenger services including restaurants, cafes, alehouses, bookshops, drugstores and even a nail salon. Free WiFi and power outlets are available for your convenience. 

The rental car desks are located next to the baggage claim areas in Terminals 1 and 2. Rental car companies at RDU offer courtesy shuttles to their depots, which are located on airport property. Catch the shuttle bus to collect your car hire at the green Rental Car shuttle stops outside bag claim at Zone 4 in Terminal 1 and Zone 5 in Terminal 2. 

Keeping safe on the road in an RDU Airport car rental 

Keep these driving tips in mind when you pick up an RDU car rental.  

  • The drive from the airport to Raleigh is 14 miles and takes 20 minutes to half an hour with light traffic. Follow signs from the airport to get onto the I-40 heading east. Exit onto Wade Avenue and follow it all the way along to Capital Boulevard. Go right onto the boulevard and it will take you into the heart of Raleigh.

  • Raleigh is a car-friendly city and ranked as one of the better places to drive in the US. Check the local traffic reports before heading out, and avoid the morning and afternoon rush hours if you can. 

  • Some major roadways to be aware when navigating Raleigh in your rental car include the Beltline—referring to interstate 440 that runs east-west, Fayetteville Street (the main street through downtown Raleigh), Glenwood Avenue, Hillsborough Street (runs through the North Carolina State University campus), and Capital Boulevard. 

  • You’ll come across a mixture of parking garages and free or metered on-street parking in Downtown Raleigh. When parking on the street, read the signs carefully—some places have time limits, others are free after 5pm and weekends but charge the rest of the time. 

raleigh lake boat fishing

Take in the sights with your Raleigh Durham Airport car rental  

Taste the city

Raleigh has much to offer the famished foodie. From small donut bakeries to tucked-away bar lounges, there is something scrumptious to sample around every corner while in your rental car RDU trip. Don’t miss the craft brews. 

Wander museums

Satisfy your interests with a trip to any of the magnificent museums in the city, including the North Carolina Museum of Art, the North Carolina Museum of History, and the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences. Hop in your RDU Airport car rental and visit The Marbles Kids Museum with the whole family.

Explore nature reserves

Stretch your legs at one of several green spaces in the Raleigh Area, including Hemlocks Bluff, Durant Nature Preserve, Horseshoe Farm, Annie Louise Wilkerson, MD Nature Preserve, and many more. 

See a show

Kick back and enjoy a play or musical with a visit to one of the local entertainment venues. The Kennedy Theater at Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts is worth your time, as is The Burning Coal Theatre Company. Or, head to the Rialto for a classic movie theatre experience.  

raleigh city night lights

Types of vehicles to hire from Raleigh Airport

  • Raleigh has a great selection of premium vehicles and even a few convertibles. If you are travelling here for a special occasion, consider upgrading to a luxury car rental option like a Dodge Challenger or Ford Mustang.
  • SUVs and intermediate-size vehicles are popular choices for cheap rental cars in Raleigh, but smaller vehicles can be easier to park. Choose your rental car based on your specific travel plans and what you feel most comfortable driving.
  • If you are planning a southern road trip, you can start your trip in Raleigh and drop off your car rental in Atlanta or Charleston.
  • If you want to journey further south, a droptop rental car road trip to Savannah or Jacksonville might be the perfect way to enjoy the heat.

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Raleigh Durham Airport car rental: Frequently asked questions

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Where do I pick up my car rental at Raleigh Durham International Airport? 

If you wish to pick up the vehicle from the airport location, the rental car desks are located next to the baggage claim area in Terminals 1 and 2. Catch the shuttle bus to collect your car hire at the green Rental Car shuttle stops outside bag claim at Zone 4 in Terminal 1 and Zone 5 in Terminal 2. You may compare Raleigh Durham Intl car hire offers using the search function on this page.

If you prefer an off-airport budget location, you can arrange a free pick up service from your chosen provider to reach their rental location.

How much are rental cars per day in NC? 

The daily car rental rate in NC fluctuates depending on many factors such as car rental locations, vehicle type and availability, brand, dates of pick up/drop off. Raleigh car rentals on average usually cost around USD$102 per day. The most accurate way to get an estimate is to type your desired dates into the search function on this page to compare current rates across multiple brands instantly. Please note that weekly and monthly car rentals are way cheaper than daily ones.

Find the best deals and cheap rental cars when you book through GoSee. Save more by entering your discount code, if you have any, before completing your booking.

Which car rental companies in Raleigh have updated their vehicle cleaning and safety policies because of Coronavirus (COVID-19)? 

The vast majority of car rental companies in Raleigh North Carolina have updated their cleaning and safety policies as a result of the pandemic. Simply check the terms on each listing to ensure the policy meets your standard. You can also filter the vehicles in your search results by checking the ‘Enhanced clean’ option.

What is the cheapest car rental company in Raleigh? 

The cheapest rental car company in Raleigh can vary due to supply and demand, but cheaper prices can also reflect the service and convenience levels provided. Always read the fine print before booking.

Which car rental companies are at the airport: Raleigh-Durham Intl Airport (RDU)? 

The following rental car companies have desks at Raleigh-Durham Intl Airport (RDU): Alamo, Avis, Budget Car Rental RDU, Dollar, Enterprise, Hertz, National, Payless, and Thrifty RDU rental cars. 

What type of car is recommended for driving in Raleigh, NC? 

The best type of car to rent in Raleigh is the one you’re most comfortable driving and appropriately suits your travel plans. For a short business trip, an economy size vehicle is best for driving and parking. For nature excursions further afield, SUVs are a great option. Raleigh also has a great range of premium vehicles if you’re visiting for a special occasion.

How old do you have to be to rent a car in Raleigh? 

Most Raleigh rental car companies require you to be at least 21 years of age to rent from them, with the exception of Hertz, which will rent to drivers who are 20 years old. Do note that in many cases, car rental companies in North Carolina will charge additional fees to drivers under 25 years.

What do you need to rent a car in Raleigh? 

To rent a car at Raleigh-Durham Airport, you must have a full and valid driver’s license, as well as a credit card or debit card in your name. If you are visiting from overseas and your driver's license is in a language other than English, you may also need to present an International Drivers Permit or a suitable translation.

What is the most popular rental car in Raleigh?

Usually, people book an Economy (Ford Fiesta or similar) vehicle type for their Raleigh car rental adventure.