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Guatemala’s colorful, constantly energetic capital is a thrilling clash of colonial architecture, Mayan history, and bustling markets. It’s one of the biggest cities in Central America, sprawling across multiple zones and spilling out into suburbia. Navigate this major city using a rental car for the most comfortable form of travel. Use Orbitz to find the perfect rental deal for you.

Renting a car in Guatemala City: What you need to know

Don’t be intimidated by the thought of renting a car in Guatemala City. We’ve broken down the essential information in this guide to the city, below.

Which car rental companies operate in Guatemala City?

As Guatemala City continues to develop and modernize in exciting ways, so more and more car rental companies are moving to the city to serve all the tourists and business visitors to the region. Use Orbitz to choose between companies such as Enterprise, Fox, Avis, Alamo, Budget, Hertz and more.

What is the minimum age for renting a car in Guatemala City?

Guatemala has one of the strictest age restrictions for car rentals, stating that drivers must be 25 to rent a vehicle here.

What type of car should I rent in Guatemala City?

If you’re sticking to the city and to Antigua Guatemala, you’ll be fine with a standard car. If you’re traveling further afield, consider renting a four-wheel drive.

What documentation do I need when driving around Guatemala City?

Take your driving license, rental car documents and insurance paperwork around with you at all times when driving in Guatemala City. It’s worth taking an International Driving Permit with you to pick up your rental car.

What advice do you have for driving safely in Guatemala City?

Use common sense and you’ll be fine when driving around the quickly modernizing capital city. Don’t stop for hitchhikers, drive sensibly, and keep your doors locked when exploring. Do some research in advance about which zones of the city are off-limits to tourists.

Explore Guatemala City: The best zones to visit

Guatemala City is laid out in a network of zones, some of which are friendlier to tourists than others. We’ve picked three of the best corners of the city to explore in your rental car.

Zone 1

Chaotic and charming in equal measure, downtown Guatemala City is the heart and soul of the capital. Drive around here to gape at the architecture on display in Plaza Mayor. Bring your camera for shots of the vast Palacio Nacional and the Metropolitan Cathedral. You can stay in Zone 1 cheaply, and shop for bargains here too, on the famous street known as 6th Avenue.

Zones 9 and 10

Zones 9 and 10, just south of central Guatemala City, are home to some of the best museums in the country. Come here to find the Popol Vuh Museum, which is famed for its Mayan artwork, and to see the textiles on display in Museo Ixchel. It’s also the wealthiest region of the city, with upscale accommodation, and some of the most expensive houses in the capital.

Antigua Guatemala

The old capital of the country is Guatemala City’s quieter, more picturesque neighbor. Drive here to experience streets lined with charming Spanish-style architecture from the colonial era. The pastel-colored world heritage site is one of the most visited destinations in the country. See its churches and ruins, and you’ll quickly realize why this charming town is so popular.