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Car hire in Vancouver

Hiring a car in Vancouver

Vancouver is one of the most popular destinations in Canada, and certainly one of its most diverse.

By hiring a car, not only can you explore the entire city, but you have the chance to get out and see more of this stunning country.

One of the main roads running through Vancouver is Highway 99, a huge motorway that runs all the way from White Rock up to Stein Valley Heritage Park. You can also follow Highway 1 from Vancouver across the country to Winnipeg.

What you need to know

There are a huge number of car hire providers in Vancouver, so by searching on our booking engine you can find the best deal for your needs.

Some of the top suppliers in the area include Budget, Alamo and Hertz, so you can be reassured that you're in safe hands.

In addition, since many of these providers service all of the major cities in Canada, if you're planning a road trip then you'll find it easy to arrange to pick up your vehicle in one location and return it to another.

Where to pick up your car

When you reach Vancouver, you can either pick up your hire car from the airport or the city centre.

If you've arranged to collect it at Vancouver airport (YVR) once your flight arrives, then you'll find all of the suppliers based just outside of the terminal in the car park, which the locals refer to as the Parkade.

Alternatively, if you'd prefer to collect your car in the city centre, then you'll find the suppliers based in various different locations. Upon making your booking you'll receive the address, most of which can be reached either on foot or by taking a taxi.

Best Car Rental Companies Vancouver

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Car Rental Reviews Vancouver

  • “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.”
    Diane T

Where to go

The city of Vancouver is fairly large, so you'll find it has a number of different neighbourhoods that you can explore.

Commercial Drive, which runs through the centre of the neighbourhood of Grandview-Woodland is surrounded by parkland, as well as Trout Lake. The parks are particularly popular on sunny days, as people flock to them to enjoy a picnic and relax.

On Saturdays, between May and October, head to John Hendry Park to visit the farmer's market, an event that gets very busy due to its immense popularity.

Nearby Vancouver

Since you have a hire car, why not head out and explore some of the other destinations surrounding Vancouver?

Just half an hour south of Vancouver is the city of Richmond, a beautiful coastal destination. Here you can enjoy the stunning sights along the waterfront, as well as the surrounding mountainous vistas and of course, the city itself. You will definitely want to sample some of the fresh seafood served in Richmond, as well as what's often considered the best Chinese food outside of Asia.

Slightly further south along Highway 99 is White Rock, another beautiful coastal city. This area boasts around 8km of sandy white beaches, as well as the famous pier that stretches 1,500 ft into the shallow, warm waters of Semiahmoo Bay.

Longer drives

Your hire car gives you the freedom to explore much further afield, although where you go really does depend on how far you wish to drive. The roads in Canada are known to be very long, so you could drive for days if you wanted to.

An hour and a half north of Vancouver is Whistler, an area that has thrived due to its popularity among skiers. This is the largest area where you can ski in all of North America, and it sees around 12 metres of snowfall every year.

If you're looking to drive for a few days and take in the stunning rural areas of Canada, then why not head to Banff, which takes just over eight hours to get to. This area is absolutely stunning, and is surrounded by the Rocky Mountains. The massive areas of parkland are also home to creatures such as elk and grizzly bears.

Top attractions to visit in Vancouver

You certainly won't be short of things to see and do in Vancouver, and your hire car makes it even easier to reach them all.

Eating and drinking

Whatever type of food you fancy, you'll be sure to find it in Vancouver. Explore everything, from the fine-dining restaurants to the array of street food stalls. In fact, the area has been known to attract foodies from across the globe.

The level of quality of food extends to drinking in Vancouver as well. You can explore the wide choice of quirky bars and pubs, or head for a night on the town. Whether you're looking for a quiet evening or something more lively, you'll be sure to find it in this stunning city.

Things to do

There's no end of things to do in Vancouver. The diverse background of its residents has helped the city to create a rich culture, particularly when it comes to the arts.

With over 21 theatres, as well as events such as the Vancouver Fringe Festival, Bard on the Beach and Theatre Under the Stars, you can easily see a fantastic show in the city.

If you're visiting with the family, then you won't want to miss out on a trip to Vancouver Aquarium, which has a worldwide reputation as a leading marine science centre. It's home to more than 70,000 animals, so you can easily spend a full day exploring and delighting in the exhibits.

Sightseeing

Undoubtedly one of the most stunning sights to see in Vancouver is the whales. Between March and October every year, see thousands of whales migrate through the waters, including humpback whales, orcas, gray whales and minke whales.

Many tours also take place during this time, which can take you out to the Gulf and San Juan islands where you can get a much better view of these stunning animals.

You should also head to one of the many parks and gardens to take in the beautiful scenery. Queen Elizabeth Park is particularly popular for its variety of cherry trees, which bloom in the spring and make for a stunning backdrop to a day in the park.