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Margaret River Hire Car: Top Things to Know in 2024

Are you looking for a Margaret River hire car? You’ve landed in the right place for all the insider tips and essential information.

Margaret River, the heart of Australia’s South West, is an incredible place for a road trip. From the lush forests to the world-renowned wineries and the stunning coastline, Margaret River has countless experiences to offer.

As a born and bred Western Australian, and having lived in Margaret River since 2016, I think that having your own car when visiting Margaret River is invaluable. It will give you the freedom to explore at your own pace and soak in all the stunning views that this region is famous for, such as the breathtaking Boranup Forest, a must-visit for nature lovers.

Before getting into Margaret River car hire, it’s essential to understand how to rent a car, where to pick up your rental, and the local driving laws and regulations.

Though it might seem daunting at first, I’m here to simplify the process for you.

Are you ready to kick off your Margaret River road trip?

A black Toyota hire car parked on a dirt road amidst the dense greenery of the Margaret River region, highlighting the off-road capabilities and adventure potential of the vehicle.

Best Margaret River Hire Car Companies

When it comes to hiring a car in Margaret River, your choices are tailored to ensure you have the perfect vehicle for your adventures in the South West. While Margaret River itself has a more limited selection compared to larger cities, you still have excellent options to consider.

The primary local choice, Margaret River Rent A Car, stands out for those starting their journey within the region. This company offers a personalized service, ensuring you have a vehicle that meets your needs for exploring the stunning landscapes and attractions Margaret River is famous for.

For a broader selection, particularly if you’re flying into the area, consider picking up a rental from Perth or Busselton. In Perth, you’ll find a wide array of rental companies, including well-known international brands such as Avis, Thrifty, Hertz, and Budget. These companies offer a diverse fleet of vehicles to cater to any requirement, from solo travelers to families. And if you’re venturing from Perth, make sure to check out the scenic stops on our Perth to Margaret River journey guide to enhance your road trip experience.

If you’re arriving via the Busselton Margaret River Airport, especially convenient for those coming from Melbourne and soon Sydney, there are options available to hire a car directly from Busselton. This choice is ideal for visitors looking to start their Margaret River exploration right away.

For comparing prices and securing the best deal across both local and international rental providers, Discover Cars remains a highly recommended platform. It simplifies the process of finding the right car at the right price, ensuring your Margaret River adventure begins smoothly and without hassle.

🚗Looking to get around via car? Find the cheapest car rentals here!

A silver Toyota hire car with a spare wheel mounted on the back navigates a rugged dirt trail surrounded by the lush forest of Margaret River, showcasing the vehicle's suitability for exploring natural terrains.

How Much Does It Cost to Rent a Car in Margaret River?

Renting a car in Margaret River can be a straightforward way to explore the region. On average, you could expect to pay between $80-$120 per day for a standard rental. However, prices can vary based on the type of vehicle you choose and the duration of your rental.

Additional Costs When Renting a Car in Margaret River

Renting a car in Margaret River is straightforward, but it’s important to be aware of potential additional costs beyond the quoted rental rate. These extras can affect your overall budget, so here’s what to watch out for:

  • Insurance: While optional, insurance coverage can significantly impact your rental cost. Assess your need for additional insurance beyond what your personal policy covers.
  • Fuel: The cost of fuel isn’t included in your rental agreement. You’ll need to return your vehicle with a full tank. Given the region’s vast landscapes and the distances you might cover exploring, like the journey to Margaret River’s top beaches, consider the fuel efficiency of your chosen vehicle.
  • Mileage Limits: Be mindful of any mileage restrictions in your rental agreement. Exceeding these limits could lead to additional charges, particularly relevant if you’re planning extensive travel throughout Western Australia.
  • One-Way Rental Fees: Planning to drop off your vehicle at a different location than where you picked it up? This convenience often comes with an extra fee, especially relevant for those picking up a car in Perth or Busselton and finishing their journey in Margaret River, or vice versa.
  • Young Driver Surcharges: Drivers under a certain age threshold may incur additional fees. This is a common practice across rental companies, aimed at covering the perceived higher risk of younger drivers.
  • Extra Equipment: Need a GPS, child seat, or roof rack for your adventure? These are not typically included in the base rental rate and will add to your cost. Consider what you truly need versus what you can manage without or bring from home.
  • Late Return Fees: Timeliness is key when returning your rental car. Late returns can lead to extra charges, so plan your itinerary to ensure you’re on time.
  • Credit Card Holds: Rental companies often place a hold on your credit card as a security deposit. Make sure you have enough credit available to cover this, as it can be a significant amount.
  • Additional Drivers: Adding more drivers to your rental agreement usually comes with a daily fee for each additional driver. Strategize who will be driving to minimize this cost.

Reviewing your rental agreement carefully before booking will help you understand all potential costs. This preparation ensures your car hire experience in Margaret River is as enjoyable and stress-free as possible, letting you focus on the beauty and adventure of the region.

A pearl white Volvo XC40 hire car parked on a sandy lot near a coastal area in Margaret River, ready for a day of beach exploration and coastal drives.

How to Rent a Car in Margaret River

Renting a car in Margaret River is straightforward when you follow these steps. This guide is tailored to help you easily navigate the car rental process.

  1. Selecting Your Travel Dates: Begin by pinpointing the exact dates you’ll require the vehicle. Given that rates and vehicle availability fluctuate, it’s crucial to lock in these dates as soon as possible.
  2. Choosing Pickup and Drop-off Points: Decide where you’ll collect and return your rental car. Options often include airports or city center locations. Opting to pick up and return the vehicle at the same spot is typically more economical.
  3. Assessing Your Need for a Vehicle: Reflect on your itinerary and destinations. If you’re staying with friends who can provide transportation, or if your activities are localized, you might not need a rental. However, for those planning to explore more remote areas independently, a car becomes essential.
  4. Exploring Rental Options: Take time to research the various car rental agencies available in Margaret River, comparing their offerings and reputations. Pay attention to the details to avoid unexpected fees at the time of pickup.
  5. Selecting the Right Vehicle: Choose a car that aligns with your requirements, considering both the number of passengers and the amount of luggage. While SUVs or 4WD vehicles offer more space and comfort, smaller cars are generally more affordable. Additionally, manual transmission vehicles can also be a cost-saving option.
  6. Obtaining a Quote: Enter your specifics and vehicle preferences on platforms like Discover Cars to review different quotes. This step helps you identify the best vehicle for your needs at a price that fits your budget.
  7. Insurance Considerations: Make sure you fully understand your insurance options, whether it’s through your personal policy, a credit card, or the rental company’s offer.
  8. Completing Your Booking: After conducting thorough research and choosing your rental car, proceed to finalize your booking. Double-check all the details for accuracy and keep a copy of the booking confirmation for your records.

This approach ensures a well-planned and stress-free car rental experience in Margaret River, allowing you to concentrate on enjoying the region’s scenic beauty and attractions.

How to Save Money on Rental Cars in Margaret River

When renting a car in Margaret River, there are strategic ways to ensure you’re getting the best value for your money. These tips can help you cut costs without sacrificing comfort or convenience.

  1. Return Your Car to the Same Place You Picked It Up: To circumvent extra fees, make sure to drop off your rental car at the same location you collected it from. This planning can lead to significant savings, as returning the vehicle to a different spot often incurs substantial charges.
  2. Rent a Small Vehicle: Selecting a smaller car can be more economical and fuel-efficient, making it an ideal choice for those traveling in smaller groups or with limited luggage. Economy class vehicles are not only more affordable but also easier to navigate and park.
  3. Rent a Manual Transmission: If you’re adept at driving a manual transmission, choosing a vehicle with a stick shift can lower your rental cost. Manual cars often have cheaper rental rates, providing an opportunity for savings if you’re comfortable with this type of vehicle.
  4. Stick to One Driver: Additional drivers on the rental agreement can increase the cost. To minimize expenses, designate a single driver for the rental period, ensuring this individual complies with the rental company’s requirements regarding age and driving experience.
  5. Skip the Extras: Car rental agencies may offer additional services and equipment, such as GPS navigation, child seats, or enhanced insurance, at an extra charge. Utilizing your smartphone for navigation and bringing personal car accessories can help reduce your overall rental costs by avoiding these supplementary fees.
A rugged black Toyota 4x4 hire car parked on a sandy path surrounded by native bushland, evoking the spirit of adventure in Margaret River's natural landscape.

Where to Pick Up Your Rental Car in Margaret River?

When you arrive in Margaret River, you have a few convenient locations where you can pick up your rental car. Each option caters to different needs, whether you’re flying in to Busselton or you’ve already arrived in Margaret River.

Busselton Margaret River Airport (MRB)

Flying into Margaret River? Car rental desks are available right at the airport, however it’s better to book this in advance so you don’t miss out on a car.

Rental Vehicle Return Tip: Always remember to return your vehicle within the rental company’s operating hours. If you require after-hours services, check directly with the rental provider for any special accommodations.

🚗Looking to get around via car? Find the cheapest car rentals here!

Requirements for Renting a Car in Margaret River

Before you head out to explore Margaret River, make sure you’re familiar with the rental car requirements. Meeting these will ensure a smooth rental process to get you on your way to experiencing the South West region.

  1. Age To rent a car in Margaret River, you must be at least 21 years old. However, some rental companies may charge a young driver surcharge if you are under 25 years of age.
  2. Driver License You need a valid driver’s license that has been held for at least one year. International visitors should have an International Driving Permit along with their license if it’s not in English. Ensure your license has a clear photograph to serve as proper identification.
  3. Credit Cards and Debit Cards Most car rental companies in Margaret River require a credit card in the driver’s name for a security hold. A debit card may be accepted; however, additional requirements may apply such as proof of return travel ticket.
  4. Documentation Needed When you arrive at the car rental agency, you will need to present the following:
  • Your driver’s license
  • A credit card (or a debit card, subject to company policy)
  • A booking confirmation if you reserved the vehicle ahead of time
  • Any other documentation the specific rental company might require, like additional identification or a utility bill.
Two cyclists on a serene, tree-lined rural road in the Margaret River area, enjoying a sunny day of outdoor activity surrounded by lush greenery.

What to Do During Accidents and Breakdowns

If you’re on the road in Margaret River and encounter a car accident or a vehicle breakdown, knowing the right actions to take is crucial for your safety and to manage the situation effectively.


If an accident occurs, prioritize assessing any injuries to all individuals involved and contact emergency services if needed.

Next, if your vehicle is obstructing traffic and it’s safe to do so, move it to a secure location.

Exchange essential information with the other driver, such as names, contact details, and insurance information, while avoiding any admission of fault or placing blame during the exchange.

Document the incident by taking photographs of both the damage and the surrounding scene for future reference.

Lastly, it’s advisable to inform your Margaret River car rental agency about the accident and follow their instructions regarding the subsequent steps, in line with their specific policies.


In the event of a rental car breakdown, immediately prioritize your safety by moving the vehicle to a safe spot away from traffic.

After ensuring safety, reach out to the rental agency using the roadside assistance contact they’ve provided. Make sure you have this number easily accessible for the duration of your rental.

Adhere to the guidance given by the roadside assistance team, which might involve waiting for a repair team or coordinating a tow to the closest service station.

Should you find yourself in a secluded location with limited cell service, deploy your safety triangle and remain with your vehicle until assistance arrives.

🚗Looking to get around via car? Find the cheapest car rentals here!

A white Toyota hire car towing a camping trailer equipped with bicycles, ready for an outdoor adventure in Margaret River, symbolizing a perfect blend of comfort and exploration.

Final Thoughts: Margaret River Car Hire

Exploring car rental options in Margaret River presents a variety of choices tailored to your specific travel requirements.

Having access to a personal vehicle, whether for business engagements or leisure activities, empowers you to discover the renowned wine country and the stunning landscapes, including making a stop at the best breweries in Margaret River for a taste of local craft beer.

For the most advantageous deal, it’s wise to compare rental prices and secure your booking well in advance.

It’s also important to verify the operating hours for vehicle pickup and return, particularly if your travel schedule is tightly packed. For utmost convenience, consider arranging your car rental directly from Busselton Margaret River Airport.

Keep in mind, driving in Australia requires you to stay on the left side of the road, and be especially cautious of the extended distances between fuel stations when in more isolated locations.

By planning your journey ahead, you’re ensuring a memorable adventure across the South West.

Don’t forget to visit Discover Cars to find an affordable car rental in Margaret River and tick off this destination from your travel wishlist!

Australia Travel Planning Guide

🚑Should I buy Australian travel insurance?

100% YES! — Australia has “free” healthcare but it’s only for citizens and permanent residents. Foreigners visiting need travel insurance in case anything happens on their visit. I like SafetyWing – their Nomad Insurance starts at just $1.50 USD a day!

🚗Should I rent a car in Australia?

Yes — Renting a car is a necessity in most of Australia! If you want to go on road trips or adventures outside of the major cities, and even if you’re staying in a major city, you’ll want to rent a car. If you are visiting Margaret River, it will be even more important that you hire a car, you’ll need it to be able to get around and see all the great attractions and wineries!

🏨What’s the best way to book my Australian accommodation?

My go-to for Australian hotels is Booking.com. Pretty much all registered accommodation use Booking.com (but not necessarily any of the other major booking platforms), and even most of the holiday homes and caravan parks use Booking.com too!

If you’re planning a trip to Australia where you will stay at multiple locations, it’s super handy to have all your accommodation listed in one place, and accommodation owners like Booking.com because it’s easy to contact the guests using the messaging platform if the guest has an international phone number.

I sincerely hope you enjoy your visit to Margaret River!