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Car Hire in the USA

The USA is the ultimate holiday destination, offering something for everyone. A Sixt car hire in the USA will give you the freedom to get to know this vast and varied country, whether you opt for the iconic metropolis of New York, the glamour of Beverly Hills or the musical mecca of Nashville. You can start exploring from the moment you arrive with Sixt: it is quick and easy to rent a car in the USA before you travel by making an online booking.

View all car hire locations in the USA

Our Service  |  FAQs  |  Driving Tips  |  Places of Interest  | Crossing Borders

Here at Sixt, we want to help you make the most of your stay. We have put together this helpful travel guide which includes a map detailing some of the main sights and attractions to discover with a car rental in the USA, as well as offering information about the major driving routes, traffic regulations and parking. You can also use our handy branch menu to find the Sixt branch closest to where you are staying. We have numerous locations covering all the major cities, airports and transport links.

Our Service

A Sixt car hire in the USA allows you to see the country in a rental vehicle that's right for you. Our saloons and estates offer great value for money, while a 4x4 is ideal for exploring off the tourist trail. Alternatively, you can travel like a Hollywood A-lister in our range of sports cars and convertibles from some of the world's most prestigious manufacturers. In addition, all of our car hire deals in the USA come with the option of adding extras to make your driving experience more convenient for you. For example, we can insure additional drivers if you are going on a long road trip, or include Sat Nav to help you find your way. We can also provide child seats for families with children. It's easy to select and book your chosen extras when you make your reservation.

Driving Licences

The person renting the vehicle and anyone else who will be driving it must show a valid driving licence, plus an official translation if your country is not part of the international driving licence treaty. If you are not from the USA, you will also need to show your passport or an official ID card when you collect your rental vehicle. If your licence is in a language which doesn't use the Roman Alphabet, you will also need an international driver's licence. Various restrictions apply to European citizens on which vehicle you can hire. Please check with us when you make your booking.

Age Restrictions

You must be aged 21 or over, and have held your driving license for at least one year to be applicable for any of our car hire deals in the USA. Restrictions on certain car categories apply to drivers aged under 25, which we can advise you about when you make your reservation. Drivers under 25 will also be obliged to pay an underage driver fee.

Booking by Credit Card

All major internationally recognised credit cards can be used to rent a car in the USA with Sixt. You must be the cardholder and be able to show the card when you collect your rental car. Debit cards can be accepted under certain circumstances at Sixt's discretion, please check when you make your booking. Prepaid cards cannot be accepted, nor can Visa Electron, Maestro or Electronic Use Only cards.

In An Emergency

If you need the emergency services while you're travelling in the USA, such as if you're involved in a traffic accident, you can contact the police, ambulance and fire service by calling 911.


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Driving Tips

In the USA, traffic laws can vary between different states, so it's important to check the rules and regulations in the state you are visiting.

  • You must drive on the right hand side of the road.
  • Alcohol limits vary from state to state, but a tough stance is taken on drink-driving in all states, so it's advisable not to consume any alcohol before you drive. It is also illegal in the USA to have an open bottle, can or other container of alcohol in your car.
  • Most states have four-way stops instead of roundabouts. The first vehicle to stop has priority. If in doubt, give way to the vehicle on your right. If you encounter a roundabout, however, priority is given to vehicles coming from the left.
  • You are not allowed to overtake school buses anywhere in the USA.

Speed Limits

Speed limits can vary in different states, but are measured in miles per hour countrywide. In all areas speed limits tend to be well signposted. It's worth sticking to the speed limit no matter what state you're driving in, as the police in the USA tend to enforce them rigorously. Speed traps are common and don't always carry warnings. As a general guide:

  • Speed limits on the motorway tend to be between 55 and 65 mph
  • In populated areas, speed limits are usually 25 to 35 mph.

Road Signs

Road signs can also differ between states, so it's important to check what signs are used in the area you're visiting.

  • Motorway signs have white writing on a green background.
  • A Yield sign, usually an upside-down triangle in yellow, means you have to give way.
  • A red octagonal Stop sign means you have to stop completely, otherwise you can be prosecuted.
  • Demarcation lines for traffic moving in opposite directions are yellow.
  • Lanes travelling in the same direction are separated by a broken white line.
  • Two yellow lines together mean you must not overtake.

Toll Roads

Toll roads are common all over the USA, and are also known as turnpikes. Not all take card payments, so it's advisable to carry cash as well.

Major Routes

The USA is a vast country, and driving across it takes a long time. However, it is a popular destination for road trips. Some of the best routes to take you across the country are the US 50, which runs west to east from California to Maryland, the Great River Road from Minnesota to Louisiana, and the US 6 from California to Massachusetts.


Parking regulations differ between states, cities and towns. Most cities are divided into different parking zones which are designated by different colours. They tend to be served well by both private and public car parks which you have to pay for. It is sometimes possible to park for free outside shopping malls and large stores. However, parking time is likely to be restricted, and if you overstay you can be fined or have your car towed away. Remember to park in the direction of the traffic.

Places of Interest

The USA is far too large a country for you to be able to visit all its iconic sights in one trip. We've put together this map of some of our favourites for you to explore with your car hire in the USA.

Top Architectural Attractions in the USA

  • Space Needle, Seattle
  • Empire State Building, NY
  • Golden Gate Bridge, SF
  • Walt Disney Concert Hall, LA
  • Gateway Arch, St. Louis, Missouri
  • The White House, D.C
  • Chrysler Building, NY
  • The Strip, Las Vegas
  • Wrigley Building, Chicago, IL
  • Epcot, Orlando, Florida

The Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building are essential stops on a visit to New York, as are the Wrigley Building in Chicago and the Gateway Arch in St Louis, Missouri. A trip to Seattle should encompass the Space Needle, and the Epcot Centre is a must for anyone visiting Orlando. Head to the West Coast to take in the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles and the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, or place your bets on the Strip in fabulous Las Vegas! And of course you'll want to pay a visit to the White House, home of the President, in Washington DC.

  • Grand Canyon, Arizona
  • Badlands , SD
  • Half Dome, Yosemite National Park
  • Zabriskie Point, Death Valley, CA
  • Everglades, Florida
  • Niagara Falls, NY

The USA has some of the most varied and beautiful National Parks in the world. Discover the wildlife at Badlands in South Dakota, or explore the rocky terrain of Zabriskie Point in Death Valley, California. Take a trip to Yosemite where you can see the granite Half Dome. And no visit would be complete without marvelling at the Grand Canyon, Arizona, relaxing in the Everglades in Florida, or taking in the world famous spectacle of Niagra Falls.

Film Locations

Most of the world's best-known films have of course been shot in Hollywood, but the USA also boasts a wide variety of other film locations. Chicago was the setting for 2005's Batman Begins, which used the Board of Trade Building as the headquarters of Wayne Enterprises, while Jaws terrified the residents of Martha's Vineyard, near Massachusetts. Back to the Future used Southern California as its backdrop in 1985, and Chippera Square in Savannah, Georgia, was where Forrest Gump sat on his park bench in 1994. Glamorous Manhattan in New York was the location for the hugely popular TV series Sex and the City, between 1998 and 2004.

Crossing Borders

Rental vehicles can only be used in the state where you collected your vehicle and the immediate surrounding areas. Please check with us before crossing any state lines.

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Your benefits with Sixt

  • Sixt Best Price Guarantee
  • New cars - on average 3 months old
  • Free cancellation and reservation changes when you pay on arrival
  • Miles & More - Earn miles
  • No hidden costs
  • Germany's largest and best car rental company
  • No credit card fees
  • Excellent customer service