Car hire in the United Kingdom

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Car hire in the United Kingdom

Hiring a car in the United Kingdom

The United Kingdom is one of the most historically important countries in the whole world, and with its beautiful countryside, beaches and excellent cities, it is also one of the best and most diverse anywhere on earth for people to come and visit.

When visiting the UK, one of the very best things you can do is to drive and enjoy the vast differences in terrain and setting that makes the UK such a varied and wonderful country to visit. From the mountainous and spectacular glory of the Scottish highlands, to the beautiful and serene Welsh valleys and traditional the seaside towns and modern urban sprawls of England, the UK has perhaps more variety and tourist worthy destinations than any country in the world. And with an excellent road network, it really is the perfect country to drive in.

What you need to know

No matter where you will be heading to in the UK on holiday, the options for hiring a car are plentiful. There are hundreds of car hire companies located nationwide, meaning that it's easy to find the right car for your driving holiday at a price that suits you. Convenient car hire locations also mean that you can pick up your car in one location and drop it off in another at the end of your trip.

At Holiday Autos, our easy to use website allows you to compare prices from 1,500 suppliers before you go, both major international firms and local independent companies, so you know we will find the right deal for you.

We also offer you peace of mind through our 24 hour support and free cancellation and amends policy.

Where to pick up your car

There are a multitude of car hire offices located in towns and cities all across the country, but your best option will always be to pick up from your arrival airport, meaning you are on the road in minutes.

Of course, there are many airports in the UK, and depending on where you intend to start your visit, you could fly into any of them. Some of the biggest airports include London Heathrow (LHR), London Gatwick (LGW) and Manchester Airport (MAN).

Most of these airports have car hire desks located either in the arrivals halls or in the car parks nearby, so it's a good idea upon arrival to look for the signs that point you to wherever you can find the companies located. Even those that don't have on site car hire locations will have shuttle buses or meet and greet services to hand, making it easy to get your vehicle.

Best Car Hire Companies United Kingdom


Car Hire Reviews United Kingdom

  • “The pick-up was easy, it took 5 minutes from arriving at the desk to driving out the car, and the return took even less time. Booking with Holiday Autos was easy and I received the car that I had asked for, just perfect!”
    Diane T

Where to go

Through Holiday Autos, more than five million holidaymakers have discovered the freedom a hire car offers over the last 20 years. So whatever you want to do when you're in the UK, the choice is yours, and the freedom to explore this wonderful company is wide open.

With such a wide variety of places and types of location to see in the UK, it's always the best idea to map out your planned journey before you set off. Where do you want to tick off an what do you want to see? Your chosen route will depend on these answers.

Most people who come to the UK to drive will make use of its many motorways and A roads, giving easy access to towns and cities, but those looking for something a little different can find rural riverside and mountainside mountains located throughout the country, especially in the north of Scotland and in parts of northern England.

Driving in the United Kingdom

Thanks to the thousands of miles of motorway in the UK, most of the major locations are well linked, and driving is a bit of a breeze thanks to these spacious roads which just beg to be driven. However, it's important to remember there are differences for foreign tourists to get their heads around before they come to the UK.

For example, unlike most of the rest of the world, British drivers will drive on the left hand side of the road, and also on the right hand side of the car, which can take some getting used to, especially for those who are not expecting it when they arrive. Remember that when it comes to the law, there are specific differences between countries in the UK as well. For example, while the drink driving law in England and Wales is reasonably strict, Scotland operates an almost zero tolerance policy when it comes to this crime, and it's worth remembering this before you set off.

Longer drives

If you are looking to explore the UK by car and want to see something a little different, then a trip to the green county that is Yorkshire is well worth a day or two. From the historic city of York to the brilliant urban centre that is Leeds and with the Yorkshire Dales and Lake District to boot, this county, the biggest in England, really does have everything all under one roof, making it the ideal place for anyone to visit.

And for those looking for something a little different, why not try a trip to Wales? Cardiff, the capital, is home to some wonderful culture and historic architecture, while the countryside in Wales is some of the best anywhere in the Wales. Head south to the Valleys, and you will truly be visiting some of the most breathtaking sights available anywhere in the UK.

Top attractions to visit in the United Kingdom

There's no way when you come to the UK that you'll be able to fit everything in, but there are some places that are just begging to be visited throughout the country, and are must sees.


The Scottish Highlands are like nowhere else on earth, and there's a reason why the area has been the setting for many films crying out for a beautiful rural location across the years. From Ben Nevis to Fort William and Loch Ness, the places to visit in the Highlands are almost endless, and every one is somehow more perfect and breathtaking than the last.

The Highlands are also one of the most serene places on earth, and for those who want to see something different without the hustle and bustle of the city, there are so many lovely highlights to see in the great Scottish north.


On the flip side of this particular coin, it would be difficult for anyone to visit the UK without paying a visit to London. Millions of tourists flock to the capital every year, and with good reason. There are just so many attractions to see in the city. For example, no trip to London is complete without visiting Westminster, the heart of British politics, or the West End, known for its vibrancy and its penchant for wonderful musical theatre.

South coast

Of course, as well as beaches and sprawling cityscapes, the UK is also the home of the traditional beach holiday. You can see how the Brits have enjoyed the beach for decades, including ice cream and donkey rides. You'll experience what millions of people over the years have and enjoy the wonders of a traditional British seaside trip, making it something that is more than worth adding to your own driving holiday. The south coast is the very best place to see this type of location, with Brighton, Penzance and Salcombe ranking among the very best.


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