Car Hire in Dunedin
This information is correct as of June 2015
Rent a car to get around and explore Dunedin on New Zealand’s South Island. This is a great travel option so you can go wherever you want and not be restricted with a strict schedule. Car hire providers in Dunedin will be able to help you in moving around the city.
Where to hire a car in Dunedin
Major car hire companies are located within Dunedin city and at the Dunedin International Airport terminal.
There are several car hire companies operating at Dunedin International Airport. These include Avis Rent a Car, Budget Car and Truck Rental, Hanson Rental Vehicles, Europcar, Ezi Car Rental, Hertz, Jucy, and Driven. These offer direct airport pick-up and drop-off services.
When visiting Dunedin on a cruise ship, you can rent a car at Dunedin Tours or Dunedin Port Chalmers located at the Cruise Ship Terminal in Port Chalmers.
There are also car hire companies situated at or near the heart of the city. These include Pegasus Rental Cars, Avis Rent a Car, Thrifty, and Hertz Dunedin Central.
Take note that when renting a car at Jucy at Dunedin International Airport, only cars are available. If travelling in luxury and style is what you are after, rent a car at Hertz. It offers a wide range of luxury and hybrid cars.
What to expect when hiring a car from Dunedin
Getting around Dunedin is very easy as distances from one point to another are not that far. It is very accessible, though a bit hilly. Aside from car hires, transport options include the public bus, train, and taxi.
Exercise extra caution when driving on open country roads around Dunedin, or New Zealand in general. You will find that they have good motorways but extreme weather needs to be taken into account. Be careful when driving during winter. Check road conditions and avoid driving on heavy snow but if you need to, make sure to drive slowly. Low sun is more likely to happen during winter so prepare for this when travelling at sunrise or sunset.
Narrow secondary roads and bridges also need to be considered when driving around Dunedin.
Dunedin International Airport provides ample parking where you can leave your car for several days. It is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Payment is made via the Automatic Pay Stations found at the main terminal building.
Dunedin likewise has good parking within the city, including outdoor car parks which are suitable for campervans.
Getting to your destination
Dunedin is home to several beaches along its coastline and around Otago Harbour. Most beaches are just a few minutes away from the city centre by car.
For surfing enthusiasts, head to St. Clair Beach which offers the most consistent surf break in New Zealand. It is just a 10-minute drive from the city via SH 1 and Andersons Bay Road. At the southern part of St. Clair Beach, tourists will find the Hot Salt Water Pool. This is an open air public swimming pool that is ideal for those who enjoy swimming in salt water but want warm temperatures.
Gardens are likewise must-see destinations in Dunedin, as they are home to some interesting and scenic flora and fauna.
Take SH 1 and Clyde St. or George St. and you will reach the Dunedin Botanic Garden in approximately 10 minutes. This is the first botanic garden in New Zealand and is home to almost 7,000 plant species and a wide range of birds.
When it comes to museums, don’t miss the Otago Museum, one of the leading tourist attractions of Dunedin. The Otago Museum has one of the largest collections in the country. From natural specimens and artefacts to an interactive science centre with a tropical butterfly rainforest, the museum has a lot to offer.
Otago Museum is only about 3-5 minutes’ drive from the Dunedin city centre via SH 1. At a distance of only about 1.7 kilometres, the museum can also be walked from the city centre, which can take up to 22 minutes.