Car Rental Security Deposit

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What is a car rental security deposit?

A security deposit is a sum of amount a car rental supplier holds in the name of the main rental driver. On renting a car, the supplier or car rental company blocks a certain amount as security deposit on the card of the main driver or the renter. Which means, when you rent a car you’ll have to pay a certain amount as security in case of parking tickets or any minor damage to the car rental. This deposit is kept with the supplier until the car is returned back. In case of any damage to the rental, the car provider or the supplier deducts the amount from the security deposit blocked on the renter’s card. The security deposit is fully refundable when the rental is returned without any damage or parking tickets fee.

What are the payment methods to pay the security deposit?

Majority of car rental companies prefer customers to pay the security deposit with a credit card, as it is secure and easier. To pay the security deposit the credit card has to be in the name of the main driver/renter.

If you don’t have a credit card, some suppliers may even consider holding a security deposit with a debit card with some additional formalities and some may even take cash. As the most preferred and reliable method is through a credit card, make sure you contact and confirm the same with your supplier before making a booking. In case of an emergence the supplier may alter the payment method.

How is my money being held with my car rental supplier?

In some cases the funds are reserved/held but not deducted from the customer’s account and released once the car has been returned. 

In other cases an amount is deposited to the supplier, and refunded to the customer’s preferred bank account if the car is returned without any damage or tickets.

How much do I have to pay for the security deposit?

The security deposit is either calculated on a certain percentage of the total booking amount or a pre-decided amount by the supplier. This also depends upon days of rental, car type, country of rental, age (usually less the age is more the charges are), and also the drop-off (if the drop-off is in another country the charge would be more than usual). 

The best way to know the deductible amount is to read the ‘Rental Terms’ section while comparing cars from different suppliers on the search page. The security deposit information is also included in your rental documentation. 

When will I get my car rental security deposit refund?

Some car rental companies refund the security deposit right after the rental return formalities are done. But in some cases the refund may take a few hours or business days depending upon the renter’s bank.

If in case it has taken more than the mentioned time, you can contact your bank about any discrepancy.

Can I avoid paying the security deposit?

No, the deposit is unavoidable, as supplier companies are lending the customers a service of a high value, it is understandable on the company’s part to want to keep a certain amount as security. This simply secures the supplier from any damage or extra charges. Although you can’t avoid paying a car rental security deposit there are other ways to save money. Check out our guide on how to book a cheap car rental and save big on your deal.

If you want to compare the security charges with different suppliers, visit, the ‘Rental Terms’ section on the search page.

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