Renting a car in Portugal

    I have never rented a car in Europe before. I have found one quote, but they want several hundred pounds paid on a credit (not debit) card for an excess (on top of the rental price). I do not have a credit card, but was reading that you can take out insurance in the UK to waive this excess before you go on holiday. The only thing I am thinking is that if I take out an excess policy in the UK, when I turn up to collect the car in Portugal, will the car hire company accept the excess insurance that I have taken out in the UK, or will they insist that I have to still pay for it? Thank you.


    Done this several times. All they will do is ask for excess insurance. When you tell them that you have your own they will accept it but will require a credit card as a guarantee.

    or just go with a car hire company that has full collission & excess damage waiver (CDW / EDW)

    I regularly hire car in Europe and always get my excess waiver locally using This is a good article on cheap car hire:…ire

    Be mindful of the fuel policy as full-to-full usually works better than other options.

    I use , they are a broker using all hire companies. After selecting car they give option of insurance against excess which means whatever happens you pay nothing ( see terms ). You will still have to pay deposit to hire company on credit card which gets refunded.
    Used them twice in Hungary no problems.
    Hope this helps.

    Original Poster

    Not too sure about all of this now. If I have read things right, even if I take out an excess waiver myself, I still have to pay at least £500 on a credit card as a deposit to the car hire firm? I haven't got a credit card and my oldest son is only 19 and doesn't have a credit card either).

    I think you'll find that no matter what insurance you take out yourself, and even if you buy their full insurance package, they will still want to take a credit card swipe. Seems its almost impossible to hire a car without a credit card these days. Thats been my experience anyway.

    I don't think you can hire without a credit card as they use it for security .

    I use my own excess, I have a yearly policy for about £40, they will still want a cc as they claim for damage from you and you claim it back from your insurers, make sure all damage is noted and take pics, hire place in faro earlier in year tried to get me for €800 until I showed them pic on phone I'd taken whilst hire bloke was there..

    I would agree that you would need some sort of credit card to rent a car. Have you considered pre paid credit cards as an alternative?…rds

    Original Poster

    That's a good suggestion. Thank you.

    in my experience in portugal, theyll still charge (or at least put a hold on, in my case, 1000 euros) for the excess-regardless of what policy you have to cover it. If they have to charge you the 1000 euro excess, then your excess policy will cover that. But the two are separate. Theyll ask you if you want to take out the additional excess cover (that will be a lot more than doing it here), but if you dont, then ive never been asked to show anything-just a hold on the card. Bear in mind, car hire in Portugal tends to be more expensive than say Spain or Greece etc.

    Try all the cars are excess free, with a free extra driver.
    Some of the companies they use only require a €300 bond on your credit card, check terms and conditions for what is required. You will need €15 cash if you hire in the airport, it is a government tax.

    find online local car hire companies and email them and explain you don't have a credit card but you're willing to pay any extra insurance premiums that's what I did 2 years ago in Malta and still only cost me £90 for a micra for the week.

    I think you are getting yourself confused. The hire company want your credit card details in case you do damage the car.You could cobble together any old piece of paper saying you are insured but why should they believe you? They are only covering their own costs. If you take out independent insurance, they charge you and you claim it back from the insurers. They need to see that they will not be out of pocket which is why they take a card inprintt
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