Ultimate Guide to Rent a Car in Madeira

Things to Remember When Renting a Car in Madeira Category: Portugal Travel Guide Posted Date: 18th May 2023
This beautiful Portuguese island called Madeira is in the Atlantic Ocean. Known for its gorgeous coastline, striking landscape, and beautiful weather, the island is packed with plentiful things to do and experience. From Funchal’s most popular museums and botanical gardens to Monte Palace Tropical Garden known for its exotic plants, animals, and mouth-watering Madeiran cuisine, everything is just worth experiencing when you are there. Considering all the locations you want to explore — popular and hidden gems — a car rental is the best way to make sure you don’t miss any. For a fact a rented car would make your trip easier, but there are certain things you need to know to enhance your trip with a car rental as well. Below we have mentioned some essential information related to renting a car in Madeira. Follow the tips to have an overall smooth experience:

Best Car Category to Choose

  • The compact car rental category is the most popular in Madeira. Due to the island’s narrow roads around hilly areas and off-the-beaten-path destinations, compact cars remain the most favorable. These cars’ rental cost is affordable and comes with great fuel efficiency.
  • With a compact car rental, you won’t face an issue while driving in the busy edges of Funchal with traffic in the peak hours.
  • Parallel parking in narrow streets is easier with smaller cars.
  • Considering you could be traveling in a bigger group and your requirements are different, you can also rent a car from other categories such as economy, van/minivan, SUV, luxury, convertible, and sedans.

Manual or Automatic Transmission Car Rental?

It is recommended to stick to the transmission you are in a habit of driving. Trying anything new in Madeira is not something you would want to do. The best thing about the car rental companies in Madeira is that they provide both transmissions, so you can choose a car you are comfortable driving.

Car Rental Age in Madeira:

Car rental companies such as Alamo, Enterprise, National and Ace Rent a Car allow drivers as young as 18 years to drive a rental car in Madeira. Suppliers such as Sixt, Centauro, Europcar, Funchal Drive Rent a Car, and Bravacar require the renters to be at least 19 years of age to be able to rent a car in Madeira. There are other suppliers that may let you hire a car only if you are 21 years old. This simply means all the suppliers have different rental requirements, so you would be required to check the supplier “Rental Terms” of the preferred company. Also to be mentioned, companies require renters under the age of 25 years to pay a Young Driver Surcharge.

Do You Need a Credit Card to Hire a Car?

Yes, you will need a credit card to rent a car in Madeira to pay a refundable security deposit at the rental desk while you pick up the car. The supplier will block a certain amount mentioned in the rental terms for the whole rental duration. Note that the credit card is required to be in the name of the main driver and the amount may vary from deal to deal.

Driving License Requirements

An original driver’s license of the main and additional drivers is required to be presented at the supplier’s counter to rent a car in Madeira. There may be a minimum duration requirement for which you must have held a driver’s license.

Do you need an International Driving Permit (IDP) to Rent a car?

Some suppliers require you to have an International Driving Permit (IDP) along with an official driver’s license from your home country. The conditions in which the IDP may be mandatory are like if your original license is not in the Roman alphabet.

Where to Rent a Car in Madeira Island?

Madeira Funchal Airport is the only airport on the island and it is considered the most popular car hire location. As car rental facilities are available inside the airport premises at the arrivals hall in the terminal, you can pick up the vehicle as soon as you land. If some supplier is situated outside the airport premises, a free shuttle service is provided to make the pick-up easier for you. Airport pick-ups are a good idea also because taxis are expensive from the airport and other public transportation options are quite hassling considering you would be having all your travel luggage with you. Other than the airport there are locations such as Funchal Sao Martinho and Funchal Downtown where you can pick your rental from.

How to Book a Cheap Car Hire?

  • Book your vehicle well in advance of your trip to get the best prices, as the earlier you book cheaper the rates are. Also, you get a wider fleet to choose from with early bookings.
  • Reservations made through Portugal Rental Cars comparatively have lower rates. As the website has the most popular brands, you can easily compare and choose the deal type and car of your preference without any hassle.
  • Booking an economy or a compact car will also help you save more as these categories have low rental costs and are fuel efficient.

Some Useful Tips to Rent a Car Madeira

  • You can reserve a car rental for both short and long-term. Starting from a day to a month, 2 months, 3 months, and more, suppliers offer customizable deals on the basis of duration preferred.
  • To easily navigate through the island, it’s best to rent a GPS. It’ll help you reach any location in Madeira easily and quickly. Simply pre-enter your destination and reach there on time. Most rental suppliers associated with PortugalRentalCars provide GPS and other extras like child seats at affordable rates. So, make sure to rent the required extras for a smooth and convenient trip.
  • Rent a car with unlimited mileage to get to every nook and cranny of the island without worrying about the kilometer limit. With this inclusion, you can make as many stops on the way to your destination as you want.

Top Attractions to Explore in a Madeira Rental Car

Exploring the best places in Madeira becomes really easy with a rental vehicle. Some of the must-visit attractions on the island have been listed below. Take a look –
  • Jardim Botânico
    Jardim Botânico
  • Levada Walks
    Levada Walks
  • Madeira Story Centre
    Madeira Story Centre
  • Mercado dos Lavradores
    Mercado dos Lavradores
  • Pico do Arieiro
    Pico do Arieiro
  • Porto Moniz
    Porto Moniz
  • Teleférico do Funchal
    Teleférico do Funchal
  • The Waterfall Road
    The Waterfall Road
  • Zona Velha
    Zona Velha
So, renting a car in Madeira can help you explore everything on this beautiful island at your own pace, and as per your own schedule. With a rental vehicle, you’ll have the flexibility to change your travel plans whenever you want. You can also take a scenic drive around the island, for instance – the mountain road to Pico do Arieiro and the coastal road between Funchal and Porto Moniz. And the best part is you can rent any type of car with Portugal Rental Cars dispensing on your requirements and preferences. So, book with us today!

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