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Need help with your car rental? Phone: 1888-269-6248
Need help with your car rental?
Phone: 1888-269-6248

The Process of Returning Your Rental Car in the United States

Returning your rental car in US guide banner

When it comes time to return your rental car to the depot, there are some important things you need to know to avoid any additional charges. VroomVroomVroom has put together a list of some of the most important points to help you plan for returning your vehicle.

First of all, it is important that you return your car on time. The return time and date will be listed on your rental agreement. Even returning the car a few hours late could result in you being charged an extra day's rental.

Fill up on gas before you return the car

Man pumping gasoline fuel in the car

When you return your car, you are required to bring it back with a full tank of gas. It is a good idea to find a gas station that is close to your depot so that you can make sure the tank is completely full. If the tank is not full, you will be charged per gallon for the cost of re-fuelling.

Pre-purchase fuel

You can pre-purchase the full tank of fuel at the start of your rental. Choosing this option means that you do not have to return the vehicle with a full tank. Generally, you are only able to purchase the full tank of fuel, so if you are only planning on traveling limited miles, this may not be a cost-effective option. However, there will be no refund for unused fuel.

Read more about car rental companies fuel policies .

Can I return my rental car if the depot is closed?

Certain depots will allow you to return the car after hours. Typically, these are airport locations, and smaller, regional depots do not permit after-hours returns. It is best to check with the depot you are planning on returning the car to, and asking about their specific policies. Generally, a service drop box will be located at the location, where you return your keys.

You will need to have pre-arranged this with the depot. If your plans change during your rental period, please phone the depot to make sure they do allow after-hours returns.

Read more about returning your rental vehicle after hours.

Your rental car will be checked for additional damage

When you return the rental car, make sure you take all of your personal belongings with you. A representative will check the vehicle for any additional damage that has been incurred. If you have purchased Loss Damage Waiver, and you have not broken the terms and conditions of your rental, you will not be responsible for the cost of any damage. If not, your credit card will be charged for the repair costs.

Find out more information about the damage process.

Pay any additional charges

Before you leave the depot, you will be responsible for paying any outstanding charges. This include any fees for late return, fuel charges, and fees for exceeding mileage limitations.

Read our comprehensive list of additional charges here.


When you return your rental car . . .

Before you return your rental car, make sure to stop at a gas station and fill the tank. You could be charged if the tank is not full. If you're returning the car after hours, remember to lock the vehicle and leave the keys in the designated key box. The representative will check the car for any damage, so unless you have purchased Loss Damage Waiver you will be responsible of paying for the full cost of repairs.