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The Complete United States Driving and Rental Guide

The United States is usually more suitable for automobile compared to public transportations. Travelling by car is thus a good way to get around to see sights of the country, whether you are planning a complete road trip, or just using a leg of your trip by taking a car to visit the cities. Here is a guide we have prepared to help you familiarized yourself with driving in the USA.

  • Speed Limit and Traffic Signs
  • Seatbelt and Child Safety
  • Parking, Fuel and Toll
  • Traffic Violation
  • Driving Licence and Age Requirements

Speed Limit and Traffic Signs

Driving is on the right with the steering wheel on the left-hand side of the car. Since traffic rules differ from state to state, it is better to review the regulations for each individual state in which you are planning to drive. Pedestrians have the legal right of way in all states.

Speed Limit

The speed limit varies from state to state, butis of 65 miles per hour (equals110 km p/h) in the majority of the states. Speed limit is frequently monitored by radar guns.

Traffic Signs

Many US states comply with the same road signs standard, but some of the states and large cities such as New York City have adopted an extent of localization or a supplement. 


Although there is a variety of regulatory signs throughout different states, they are usually self-explanatory, with explicit wordings marked on the signs.

United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_StopStopUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Yield_Give_WayYield(Give Way)United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign__Yield_to_PedestriansYield to Pedestrians, New York CityUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Passing_Zone_EndsPassing Zone EndsUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Passing_Zone_BeginsPassing Zone BeginsUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_ParkingNo ParkingUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_Parking_Here_to_CornerNo Parking; Here to cornerUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_Parking_Except_SundaysNo Parking; Except Sundays

Among regulatory signs, there is one category which indicates ‘No Standing’, and may be unfamiliar for foreign visitors or international travellers. ‘No standing’ signs indicate that stopping temporarily to load or unload passengers is allowed, while parking is not allowed. The signs are also usually red on white, but local variations exist.

United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_Standing_Any_TimeNo Standing Any TimeUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_Standing_Any_Time_New_York_StateNo Standing Any Time New York StateUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_No_Standing_Cars_Towed_Away_BaltimoreNo Standing Cars Towed Away, Baltimore

Warning signs feature yellow background colour and black pictogram, with a few exceptions.

United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Road_Slippery_When_WetRoad Slippery When WetUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Curve_With_Speed_AdvisoryCurve With Speed AdvisoryUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Stop_AheadStop AheadUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Yield_AheadYield AheadUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Railroad_Crossing_CrossbuckRailroad Crossing(Crossbuck)United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Railroad_Crossing_AheadRailroad Crossing Ahead

Information signs provide guidance and feature rectangular shape.

United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Toll__Road_Pass_OnlyToll Road Pass OnlyUnited_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Toll_Road_Pass_or_HOV_2+Toll Road Pass or HOV 2+United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Toll_Costs_at_Intersections_or_HOV_2+Toll Costs at Intersections or HOV 2+United_States_of_ America_Traffic_Sign_Hospital_signHospital Sign

You may refer to this for the unified standard that is used by the states.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Seatbelt and Child Safety

Seatbelt Laws

All drivers and passengers are regulated by law to wear seatbelts. A fine applies if a driver or passenger is caught without a seatbelt on.

Booster Seat Laws

Even though regulations vary by state, almost all states require children to be in a child seat facing backwards in the front of a car, or facing forward in the rear. As a minimum guide, children should use a booster seat until they reach 36kg to 45kg or 145cm high. 


For a specific guidance regarding child safety rules, you may click here.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Parking, Fuel and Toll

Parking

You must always park in the direction of the traffic flow on the near side of the road. Often, parking spaces are diagonally aligned and ‘head-in’, which means the front of your car must be facing the pavement (sidewalk).


· Parking Restriction

In some cities, parking restrictions are indicated by the kerb colour; for example, a red kerb indicates no parking at any time, a yellow kerb may signify a limited truck loading zone, a green kerb indicates a limited parking period, a blue kerb for disabled parking only, and a white kerb passenger loading and unloading. No parking areas, for example, at street corners, may be indicated by yellow lines. Therefore, you should always read all pavement markings carefully.

United States Red Kerb No Parking(Image from aarestriping.com)

United States Yellow Lines No Parking(Image from merchantcircle.com)

United States Yellow Kerb Loading Only(Image from timeout.com)


 · Paid Parking

Parking in most cities and towns isn’t usually a problem and on-street parking is usually metered, along with permissive parking signs specified with a restricted amount of time. It’s advisable for you to estimate your parking time and reserve a bit more parking fee as a precaution to avoid the fine for overtime parking. 


The signs are green and white, and local variations do occur with additional information or slightly different designs. 

United States Traffic Sign Parking with Time RestrictionsParking with Time RestrictionsUnited States Traffic Sign Parking With Time Restrictions (New York City)Parking With Time Restrictions New York City

Fuel Prices

The average price for USA gasoline and diesel during July to October 2017 is US$0.74.

Toll

It has more than 5,000 miles of toll roads in the USA. From bridge and tunnel tolls to express and high occupancy lanes, most states have some sort of toll road system. 


Nowadays most tolls are collected electronically via transponders that are typically placed on the windshield of the vehicle. As many toll roads no longer accept cash. It is recommended to check the individual websites of each state's toll system to inform yourself about the payment options along with your route. 


If you are hiring a vehicle from Enterprise, National or Alamo in the USA, you can review and pay the tolls online via Highway Toll Administration site; if hiring from Avis or Budget, you can check the e-toll site. For Hertz, Dollar, Thrifty and Advantage, toll charge can be checked on PlatePass.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Traffic Violation

DUI Laws

Depending on states, drivers are charged with a fine or a crime with 0.08% or 0.05% BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) limit by volume. 

Traffic Fines

Extra care should be applied to abide speed limit when driving in the United States, as speeding fines can be ranging from $36 to $1000 for first-time breaker states by states. A Nation-wide average speeding ticket is US$150


Failing to understand and follow the parking signs will potentially result in a hefty fine. This is especially the case for big cities like San Francisco, New York City and Chicago. For example, stopping, standing or parking where signs, road markings or traffic control devices do not permit you to do so will incur a fine of US$115 in New York City. In San Francisco, obstructing traffic without a permit in San Francisco will result in a fine as high as US$1000


Failure to pay traffic infringement fines will likely result in your car rental company collecting the fee from you, with an additional administration charge. These policies are generally illustrated in the terms of the contract on which you signed at the rental desk. For any further questions concerning these matters, you are welcomed to contact QEEQ’ 24/7 customer service team for assistance.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Driving Licence and Age Requirements

To drive in the United State, the driver must have a valid driving licnece that has been held for at least 1 or 2 years(according to different car hire company). The licence must be valid at the time of rental, and remain valid throughout the rental period.


The minimum age to rent a vehicle in most locations in the U.S is 21 years (age may vary by state and car category), and the driver must have a valid driver's license held for at least one year. For certain specialty and larger-sized vehicles, the minimum age of 25 years of age applies. If you're 21-25, you are likely to have to pay a young driver fee which is about $25-per-day to $50-per-day.

*Please be aware that rules are subject to change. QEEQ.COM will try the best to maintain the accuracy of this information.

Guest reviews

1 /
G.Mauffras

November 30, 2022

Destination: Hawaii - Hawaii Island

9.7Great!

Still issues with the water quality as it still leaves white spots when drying. Has been an issue in the big island for years now. Staff at the desk was great upon checkin . Very friendly and professional

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d.gilmore

November 29, 2022

Destination: Los Angeles

9.7very pleased, no extras anywhere

all good

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A.BENGOUGH

November 29, 2022

Destination: Nashville

10Excellent

Excerllant

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Enrique Cadena

November 29, 2022

Destination: Orlando

7.7Muy buen coche

en general buen servicio. o único es que no fueron rápido en la entrega del coche No nos aclararon que al no tener el coche que escogí podía tomar otro cualquiera de la zona GOLD Pero eso al final nos sirvió porque epudimo tomar uno mas grande por el mismo valor

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Yasz

November 28, 2022

Destination: Orlando

10Excelente

Buen auto y económico

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R.Levin

November 25, 2022

Destination: Miami

9.3very good

good company

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G.Brocklesby

November 25, 2022

Destination: Melbourne

10Excellent

Very quick check in no up sell got an upgrade car

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A.Smith

November 24, 2022

Destination: Orlando

9.3all good

great car

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K.Wong

November 24, 2022

Destination: Los Angeles

8.7Not easy to get to a remote car rental site.

I took me 15 min. to find the bus pick up location and which bus to take to the remote rental pick up place. It took another 30 min. to get to a Metro bus that is nor full. We were not in a hurry to reach to our Airbnb. We arrived early in LAX, 11:45 AM. We left the ACE office at 1:08 PM.

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A.Jonsson

November 24, 2022

Destination: Miami

9.7Excellent

We didn't get the car we wanted. After help from the customer service agent we got an upgrade so overall very happy that it all worked out in the end

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M.NELSON

November 23, 2022

Destination: New York

7.3Good

The attendant offered a smaller car than the one that I reserved. The attendant wanted me to purchase insurance, although I purchased the insurance online. He said it was because I reserved it throug1h a third party.

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zak yitro

November 23, 2022

Destination: Miami Beach

9.7Excellent

Good deal

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Bobby

November 22, 2022

Destination: Oklahoma City

7.7Hertz (they're not OK in) OK city

Took three attempts to find me a car. That's three times I was sent to walk to the parking lot (in the freezing cold night) and back to the office. Took nearly an hour to get the car. Gas tank not full, 5 miles after leaving the parking lot the needle moved off full, so probably a gallon

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November 22, 2022

Destination: Myrtle Beach

9Easy and excellent car rental

Excellent process and service.

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De Paul Kannamthanam

November 22, 2022

Destination: Houston

9.3Decent experice

Car is ok. Service is great. No issues.

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K.Lakeman

November 22, 2022

Destination: Las Vegas

5.3Ace Car Rental rip off

Booking with Qeeq went well but ace car rental did not have the vehicle that we had booked. They had a vehicle that was approx 25% smaller than the vehicle that was booked. We had to upgrade to a larger vehicle that was the same size that we originally booked. Additional cost was $132.00 us. I contacted ace car rental regarding this and have refused our refund. I would not recommend using Ace car rental

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T.EGAWA

November 21, 2022

Destination: Seattle

10アメリカのレンタカー

走行マイルが多めの軍が多め。

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Finch Y

November 21, 2022

Destination: Hawaii - Oahu Island (honolulu)

5.7Average

No I want to rent a mustang but was different one

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S.Young

November 21, 2022

Destination: Daytona Beach

10Quick, easy and affordable

Very quick pick-up and even quicker drop off . Lovely vehicle with plenty of room. Couldn't fault the car high and will definitely use again.

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A.AlAbri

November 18, 2022

Destination: New York

6.7Good

The location of pick up and drop were not clear

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N.Aminu

November 18, 2022

Destination: New York

10Excellent

They made life easy for me . No stress

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J.Konwisarz

November 17, 2022

Destination: San Diego

9.7Recommended for all

Perfect service made by Hertz, perfect car for my purpose.

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P.Donchev

November 17, 2022

Destination: Monterey

10Excellent!

Everything was excellent!

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goldenrd@att.net

November 16, 2022

Destination: Miami

6Not worth the savings

Interior seating stained exterior scratches and dents.

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November 16, 2022

Destination: Sarasota

9.7Excellant.

Ease of return was the biggest plus.

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T.Karlsson

November 16, 2022

Destination: Las Vegas

10Excellent

The car had not been serviced and wanted oilchange. Other than that everything was great.

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November 15, 2022

Destination: Louisville

9Overall excellent - but vehicle damage not notified to me !!

The vehicle was pretty badly damaged on the passenger side, obviously it had been in a minor accident. The vehicle was dark blue, in a badly lit garage, at night - no one pointed out the damage & it was not marked on the paperwork. Had I not spotted it, taken photo's & gone back to the service desk to report this damage, then i am sure I would have been held responsible. This should have been notified to me when I collected the vehicle.

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B.Vuvan

November 15, 2022

Destination: Los Angeles

7.3Be clear to customer what vehicle is Compact, Full size... with examples.

The reservation (Ref no.[64591006]) is for a FULL size vehicle but Fox gave me a Toyota Corolla. This is NOT fair.

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A.Deshpande

November 15, 2022

Destination: Tampa

6.7Average

Their road side assistance was terrible. I will never recommend AVIS to anyone. I had a tire blowout & I was sitting in the car for over 2 hours on a busy highway & no one turned up. Terrible experience.

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gurmeet singh

November 15, 2022

Destination: Houston

8.3Very Good

It took about 30 mins at vehicle collection booth and no staff available at booth for handover . Addressesed by shared service from other vendors.

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N.Williams

November 14, 2022

Destination: Los Angeles

9.3Good customer service.

Very flexible with car choice. An issue with the wheel, although resolved very swiftly and excellent follow up afterwards.

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L.Gones

November 14, 2022

Destination: Miami

9.7Excellent

TUDO OK

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B.Bukowski

November 14, 2022

Destination: Denver

10Good

They are fine

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M.Matar

November 14, 2022

Destination: Pensacola

9.7Well beyond my expectation

Exemplary service

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T.Campbell

November 14, 2022

Destination: Fort Lauderdale

9Good place to rent, no hidden fees

I didn't get the car I expected which was fine but the first car they tried to give me , the seats were so filthy, I couldn't possibly rent it. They tried to tell me they were "just stains, not dirt". After waiting another half hour, they finally found us another respectable car

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P.CROSS

November 13, 2022

Destination: Tampa

9.3Very good and I will certainly use QEEQ again next year.

Very quick and efficient check-in - and supplied an upgraded car as my preferred car was not available.

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S.Sullivan

November 13, 2022

Destination: Orlando

9Excellent

Service at pick up was swift. Couple of marks on the car, which I recorded as photos, windscreen not clean on the inside.

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A.Teitelbaum

November 11, 2022

Destination: Albuquerque

8.7A good way to rent a car for less money

I was supposed to get a Mazda 3 or similar but was given a Buick Encore which used much more gasoline and by the time we returned it there was a "Check Engine" light on. Other than that Thrifty was O.K.

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N.Paterson

November 10, 2022

Destination: Los Angeles

10Great car and service

Great car and great service!

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B.Harvey

November 8, 2022

Destination: Orlando

6.7Disappointed

Wasted half a day of my holiday ! Mechanical problems with car. Returned it to Sanford but they had no replacements. They sent me to Orlando to change car. No problems with second car.

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Erwan

November 8, 2022

Destination: Miami

2.7Mauvaise expérience avec Thrifty !

2H de retard pour recuperer la voiture Personnel tres deasgreable Mauvaise voiture donnée = refus de ma part = menace d’attendre 2h de plus si je prennais pas la voiture proposee Voiture tres sale : sable, bouteilles vides …

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H.Arkontopoulos

November 8, 2022

Destination: Orlando

6.7Poor.

Car smelt of smoke, had a lot of dents and scratches. Had to pay £230 unexpectedly when the car was returned although there was no damage.

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R.Looney

November 8, 2022

Destination: Jackson

8.7Disappointing, but doable.

I was disappointed that the location had no sedans even though my reservation was confirmed. I was then assigned a pickup truck, but since I was there for a funeral that wouldn't work so they assigned me a van because vans were all that was left. The vehicle was okay, but the odor in the van was not pleasant. I did not complain since it was late and I was just happy to get started for the hotel. My bill should be $275.79 and on my temporary transactions I see a pending bill for $475.79. If it doesn't correct wen fully posted I will be filing a complaint. Lorenzo the agent was pleasant and professional. Thank you.

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November 7, 2022

Destination: St Louis

7.7fine and professional experience.

Counter staff very helpful and friendly. Hard to find the AVIS location.

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N.Roberts

November 7, 2022

Destination: Orlando

6.7Total disaster experience

Not only did you not supply the car paid for we had to wait over 3hrs in line after a 9hr flight to the extent we had to hire a taxi to transport our children to our villa. We were then given 2 cars, luckily we had another person available to drive

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Andrea CAPRA

November 7, 2022

Destination: Miami

6Pésimo, abusadores con cobros en las tarjetas al ckeck out con los extranjeros!!

Pésimo!! Me están cobrando en mi tarjeta de crédito estanque lleno, y lo devolví medio!! Estoy muy molesta!! Porque se aprovechan y abusan estando uno lejos!! Además aún no me hacen la devolucion de los 150 us!! Horribles, pésimo!! No lo recomendaría nunca!! No volveré icn ustedes a rentar.

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A.Nunez Maldonado

November 7, 2022

Destination: Orlando

10La mejor manera y más facil

El coche estuvo excelente el personal excelente la única recomendación es que había poco personal en el counter y la espera para poder ser atendido debe ser menor

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N.Robinson

November 7, 2022

Destination: Los Angeles

8.7Good experience

good car and service by alamo

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B.Lundblad

November 7, 2022

Destination: Los Angeles

6.3Average

I went for a Ford Escape and got a Jeep compas there is less gasmilage and the car is smaller. The Jeep has less power in the engine and have problem to keep the speed.

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November 4, 2022

Destination: Washington

8Very Good

The car had a mechanical problem, and Avis was very accommodating

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Best car rental deals in United States

Best rates found by QEEQ users in the last 30 days.

Frequently asked questions

Q1.What is an insurance excess?

The excess is the amount you'll only be liable for in case of damage(under Collision Damage Waiver) or theft(under Theft Protection) of the vehicle.
Information about the excess will be clearly stated in the price inclusion when you reserve a car on QEEQ.

Q2. How can I add an addtional driver?

You are advised to make a request upon your arrival at the rental counter. Additional charge per day will incur unless '1 Additional Driver Included' is stipulated on the rental.
Please note that the same licence and age requirement applys to the additonal driver. The addtional driver is supposed to present the required licence document along with the main driver at pickup.

Q3.What if I want to pick up or drop off my rental car out of office hours?

QEEQ will show you the car offers available at your chosen time on the search results.
However, pick-up or drop-off out of general opening hours may subject to an extra fee unless self-service pick-up or drop-off is available.
After you reserve a car on QEEQ, we will inform you of specific policy of the car hire company by email.

Q4. Can I take the hired car to another country or cross border?

If you want to pick up your car in one country and drop it in another, your search results will show you cars you can do that with.
If you're planning to cross any borders during your trip, bear in mind:
1. You may have to pay more.
There are often extra fees, taxes or additional cover you'll pay at the car hire counter.
2.It may not be allowed.
Depending on where you're hiring, you may not be able to take your car to another country.
Please email us if you want to take your hire car into a different country during your trip, and we'll talk you through your options.

Q5. Can I pick up my car at one location and return it at different location?

Yes. You can pick up the vehicle in one place and drop it off in another. An ‘one-way fee’ will incur. Whether it is inclued in the rental price or what additional cost may arise will be clearly stated at the time of booking on QEEQ.
Please inform the car hire company of your drop-off location when you pick up the vehicle or contact them directly during your trip. You will find a phone number on the rental agreement you signed at pickup.

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