Budget Car Rental Review

Budget Car Rental offers value for money rental cars from compact cars, to large cars, trucks and 4WDs.

If you are travelling with children and you require a car or booster seat then these can be purchased after confirmation for $35.00 per rental plus GST.

Research shows that for a 15 day return to Auckland the cheapest Rental vehicle would cost you NZ$564.18 in winter and NZ$1,173.10 in summer which is quite expensive compared to other rentals like Jucy and Ace Rentals, especially in the summer, however it is cheaper than Avis and Thrifty. See the table for more a detailed comparison with four other top rental companies.
Budget has 43 branches throughout New Zealand including Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington.

Good Points

  • Insurance Protection
  • Special offer deals
  • A NZ Wide network of branches
  • Can make a reservation online
  • You can change or cancel a reservation online at no extra charge
  • Unlimited Kilometres

Bad Points

  • Budget is very slow to respond if you leave them a query using the online form on their website.
  • If you wish to travel from the North to the South Island you are not permitted to take your Budget rental vehicle on a ferry. You must purchase a Multi-Island Hire.

Age Requirement

To drive a Budget vehicle you must be over 21 years and hold a full driver’s license for a minimum of 12 months.  If you are aged between 21 -25 years, an under-age add-on will apply and will cost $25.00 NZD (plus GST) per day per driver.

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Additional Drivers

There is no extra charge if there is more than one driver.

Car Insurance

Basic car insurance is Included with an excess of NZ$2750.00 + GST. You can reduce excess by paying a daily premium of NZ$25 including GST, reducing the excess down to NZ$170.00 including GST for standard fleet. Optional insurance upgrades are also available. You can purchase a Budget Driver Protection Package which protects you from any loss or damage to the Budget vehicle plus it can reduce your standard excess by up to 90%.


Reservations department
Within New Zealand: 0800 283 438
Outside New Zealand: +64 9 529 7784
website: http://www.budget.co.nz/default.aspx

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7 thoughts on “Budget Car Rental Review”

  1. Budget Rental Cars in New Zealand – good quality cars. Poor customer service at pick up, very poor website that is full of bugs. No longer using them.

  2. I travelled back to NZ for a funeral. I booked a budget rental car through the internet, including insurance. I arrived at my detsination after 30 hours travel and was told to sign some forms including confirmation of insurance excess etc. Once I returned home I found I had been charged twice for my insurance and Budget flatly refuse to refund me, blaming the online service – it has been a nightmare. Do not use Budget! I never will again.

  3. Rented a vehicle. Returned the vehicle and had it checked over. Got an invoice for the agreed rental price.

    A few days later, checked my credit card and an extra $600 had come off. Rung up to find out what the hell was going on and was told that I had dinged it up. Queried why the guy who checked it over didn’t mention anything.

    Was told to put in a complaint to try and get my money back. Went on youtube and found out that charging for damages post-return is a scam that Budget encourages. The employees get a cut.


  4. Have been waiting for a “helpful” customer services rep to answer my call now for 29 minutes!! RECORD time!! I have been overcharged by $90 and cannot get someone to reimburse me the amount. Never hiring from Budget AGAIN.

  5. I rented a car from Budget Rent a Car at Auckland airport in Jan 2015 to attend a funeral in Auckland. I can not believe the horrible service I received. I chose Budget because it was the cheapest price when I searched rental car companies but later found that that included a lot of hidden costs! I thought I was renting a car for $138 and ended up paying $240!!!

    We returned the car and a couple of days later were called to tell us there was a scratch on the UNDERSIDE of the bumper which there were going to charge us to repair. I asked for photos of this damage and was angered to see the damage is barely noticeable and not seen unless you bend down and look UNDER the car. They wanted to charge me $550 for the repair but thankfully I purchased the excess reduction cover for $29 (Excluding GST – another hidden cost) and it cost me $300 excess!!

    Budget were rude and didn’t even have the decency to discuss the matter.

    So we paid a total of $540 for the rental of a car for a few hours. Biggest sham I’ve ever seen so DON’T USE BUDGET! They are not budget prices, just budget service!

  6. Do NOT use budget NZ under any circumstances. They do not respond to emails, calls etc. Their customer service is atrocious. I had the car I hired stolen and they offered zero support or understanding of the situation. I had a $3000 excess on the insurance and they applied charges of $4077.68 to my credit card. They are yet to provide me with detail of the insurance so I can’t even discover if theft is covered or not. A terrible company with the worst service EVER!

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