Rental Cars: Choosing the Correct Size

Choosing the correct size of hire car is not always easy – especially if you are booking a car for a trip abroad in a country where you are not familiar with the car models and may have more luggage with you than usual. However, it is important to get it right – the last thing you want is to pickup you car at the airport and not be able to fit your luggage into it…

Car rental companies know this and do make some effort to help. The booking system we use on provides details on the luggage and passenger capacity of each car.

When you use our booking system to get a quote, along with the price for each car is listed its passenger capacity, luggage capacity and the number of doors it has. For example, here is a screenshot from a quote for car hire in a European location (details may vary for different locations):

Car hire luggage capacity
Car hire luggage capacity - examples

The Volkswagen Golf is a reasonable size but has a much smaller boot than the 207 Stationwagon (basically a small estate car). This difference in boot size is reflected in the cars’ luggage capacities – the Golf can take 4 pieces of luggage but the 207 SW can take 6 pieces of luggage.

Both cars can take five people, have five doors, air conditioning and a manual gear box (reading the symbols from left to right).

These indicators are useful but they are not perfect. For example:

  • All but the smallest cars can take five people but in many cars it is cramped for longer journeys
  • The luggage capacity is a useful comparative indicator but you do not know how big the pieces of luggage used to calculate it are!

Despite these limitations, you should take note of  the information provided in the quote for each rental car and use them to compare the different vehicles on offer. It could save you a very uncomfortable journey!

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