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Zürich is a global finance hub, but it’s picturesque too, with waterfront promenades along the Limmat River and a postcard-perfect old town. Learn about pre-medieval history and browse high-end stores, with the Alps almost always in view. If they’re calling your name, find a rental car through Orbitz, hop in, and head for the hills.

Renting a car in Zürich: What you need to know

Renting a car for your time in Zürich is simple, but it helps to know the basics before you begin. Here they are.

How old do I have to be to rent a car in Zürich?

You can usually rent a car from the age of 20. However, there are a few restrictions, depending on vehicle class. For drivers under the age of 25, most rentals will carry an extra charge.

Do I need to bring any proof of identification when picking up my rental car?

You’ll need to bring a valid Swiss or international driving permit, although in most cases, a valid US driving license will be accepted too. Make sure you have a credit card in your name, too.

Is a deposit required when booking a rental car?

A deposit will be required when you pick up the car, but not when you book. Most car rental companies in Switzerland only accept deposits on credit card, not debit card.

Do I have to pay at the time of the booking?

You can often reserve in advance but hold off on payment until later, settling your bill during pickup.

What car rental companies operate in Zürich?

Zürich is home to numerous car rental operators, including Alamo, Avis, Enterprise, Hertz, and Sixt. All have particular requirements, so do shop around.

Explore Zürich: Highlights of Switzerland’s biggest city

Having access to a car will make it simple to reach the many attractions that lie both within the city boundaries and beyond. Here are just a few ideas to get you started.

Old Town

Visit Zürich’s Old Town, where the narrow streets are packed with medieval houses. Visit St. Peter’s Church, which has Europe’s largest clock face, and see the double towers of Grossmünster. It’s like stepping back in time, but within a few minutes you can be back in downtown Zürich, which has famous shopping, world-class restaurants, and Switzerland’s best nightlife.

Lake Lucerne

It’s an easy 45 minute drive to Lake Lucerne, a mountain-encircled bright blue lake. Visitors can take boat trips around the lake or walk the perimeter. Don’t miss the famous Chapel Bridge, a 669 foot (204 meter) 14th-century covered bridge first built to help fortify the area, and used today to walk across the Reuss river.


Jungfraujoch, the space between two peaks in the Bernese Alps, is known as the ‘Top of Europe’. More than 13,000 feet (3,962 meters) up, the views are magnificent (and the air is cold). Drive about 2.5 hours to Interlaken, then take the Jungfrau Railway to the top of the mountain, where you can visit the Jungfraujoch museum.