car hire in france

Car hire that's as reliable as a bottle of 1982 Bordeaux

We're as passionate about our lovely customers as the French are about their wine and cheese. To show our appreciation, we've got the very best prices for car hire in France that simply won't be matched. Zut alors!

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Choosing your car hire in France

Compare Cheap Car Hire France

France is a huge country, offering a remarkably diverse range of climates and geography. If you're planning to drive long distances with a large family, it's definitely worth hiring a larger vehicle such as a 4 X 4 or 7 seater with all the mod cons.

It can take up to 15 hours to drive to the South coast alone, so we assume you won't want to be doing that kind of mileage in a 1L compact. Of course, if you're just planning to go as far as, say, Paris - a city car is just the ticket.

Check your hire car before leaving

The open roads of France await - but don't be in too much of a hurry. Take the time to carry out a few basic checks before leaving the forecourt. It may save you time and money down the line...

  • Your hire car should have a full tank of petrol on collection. Don't forget - it should also have a full tank when you return it too. If it doesn't, you'll likely be charged the difference or a full tank again - at a far greater cost than filling it up yourself. A costly mistake indeed.
  • On collecting your car, give it the once over for any marks, dents or scuffs. Take a couple of snaps on your mobile phone before you leave the hire depot and report any damage not noted on the hire paperwork - it's pretty hard to dispute visual documentation.
  • If you return your hire car in a state akin to having just completed the Paris-Dakar rally, then you're likely to incur a hefty valeting fee. It's only fair.
  • And last, but by no means least - ensure you're aware of what fuel the car takes. Sound silly? Not as silly as forking out for a new engine after you've filled up with unleaded instead of diesel.

Vive la gosimply!

Great choice of France Car Hire on

We like to listen to our customers here at gosimply. You tell us what car you want, and we provide it. Simple.

When it comes to car hire in France we appreciate it's all about choice, convenience and reliability at a fair price.

We compare the leading France car hire suppliers and also offer a fantastic choice of vehicle hire from economy and mid-size, to luxury cars that get you around in style.

Driving in France

winding road

The French's love of the car horn (not to mention questionable hand gestures) may prove a little disconcerting to the uninitiated among us, but follow a few basic rules, drive defensively and you can't go wrong.

  • You must be 18 or over to drive a car in France.
  • Children under 10 are not allowed in the front seats and must be in a child seat if between 9 and 15kg.
  • Babies up to nine months and under 9kg can sit in front, in rear-facing seats.
  • All occupants of the vehicle must wear seatbelts at all times.
  • Crash helmets are required for motorcyclists.
  • Speeding can result in heavy, on-the-spot fines and potentially the immediate confiscation of your vehicle and licence.
  • In-car radar detectors are illegal, whether in use or not. If caught with one, you are liable to fines and/or confiscation of the device and/or your vehicle.
  • The cheapest petrol can usually be found away from the motorways, so you may save money leaving the motorway and finding a service station near a town.
  • Never cross a solid white line (in order to overtake, for example).
  • Be sure and obtain an official receipt if you are pulled over and given a fine.
  • Almost all petrol stations accept Visa and MasterCard, but many 24-hour automatic pumps do not. If you're not sure if your card will be accepted by an automatic pump, avoid trying to fill up at unmanned stations or on Sundays.

Public holidays in France

Those lovely French folk are even more passionate about their public holidays than we are (and they have a lot more of them too). Many dates fall during our school holidays, so it's well worth checking out before setting off. It could be a rather short trip otherwise.

January 1New Year's DayJuly 14Fête Nationale
In AprilEaster MondayAugust 15Bank holiday
May 1Fete du TravailNovember 1Toussaint, All Saints' Day
May 8Armistice DayNovember 11Armistice, First World War
In MayAscension ThursdayDecember 25Christmas Day

When a public holiday falls on a weekend, there is no compensating holiday on the following Monday. On public holidays, hypermarkets will generally be shut, so unless you have a chip and pin credit card that works in French automatic petrol pumps, you will need to fill up on the motorway or in normal filling stations.

Popular driving tours in France

From the sweeping valleys of the wine region to the beautiful Meditteranean coastline of the South - France offers so much in the way of stunning scenery. Below you'll find some of the very best driving routes France has to offer:

  • La Route des Crêtes (Alsace-Lorraine) - Originally chiselled out of the Vosges mountain range as a supply line. High points are Münster, Col de la Schlucht and Markstein.
  • La Côte d'Or (Burgundy) - A route for wine lovers, stretching from Santenay to Dijon.
  • The Gorges of the Ardèche (the Rhône Valley) - A panoramic road runs along one rim of the canyons, providing views over a striking, arid landscape.
  • La Route des Grandes Alpes (the French Alps) - One of the most panoramic drives in western Europe, stretching from Evian to coastal Nice.

Take full advantage of your car hire in France. For more helpful hints and information on the best driving tours France has to offer, visit Frommers.

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