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Credit Cards and Car Hire Tenerife Airport

Use of Credit Cards

When booking a hire car with any of the major companies you will need a credit card.

You will also need to present a credit card at the car hire desk at Tenerife South Airport.

Some car hire companies may accept a debit card for payment at the airport.  However, as a general rule, a credit card is required by the major car hire companies.  This covers the company for any potential financial expenses incurred.

When Booking through Tenerife Airport Guide

Before making a reservation through tenerifeairport.guide check through our Terms & Conditions.

  • You will be able to use a debit or credit card when making your booking online with tenerifeairport.guide.
  • When you arrive at Tenerife South Airport the car hire company will require sight of a credit card in the driver’s name.
  • It may be possible to present a credit card in the name of one of the party you are travelling with.  However, the car hire company will reserve the right to refuse and only accept a card in the driver’s name.  Therefore, we would always recommend the driver takes a credit card in their name.
  • Terms for hiring a car through tenerifeairport.guide state that the credit card must be in the name of the driver.
  • The car hire company will retain the credit card details to hold a deposit in case of damage etc.  This is a standard condition with all car hire companies on the Island.
  • It is important to ensure you have sufficient funds on your credit card.  The car rental company will hold an “excess payment” on your card until you return the vehicle.  Therefore ensure your credit limit covers the excess payment and any expenses you may incur during your stay.
  • The car rental company will not take any monies from your card for the “excess payment”.  However, this will affect your credit limit whilst they hold the right to collect this payment.

Car Hire with Debit Card

Car hire is possible with a debit card.

However, most companies require sight of a credit card before they will release the car hire to you.

If you would prefer to pay by debit card:

  • Be prepared to expect the car hire company to carry out credit checks on your debit card.  They will  need to check you have sufficient funds available to pay for the “excess payment”.
  • Any “excess payment” will be immediately debited from your account.  On return of the hire car, with no damage, the “excess payment” will then be credited to your card.   Again, you would need to ensure you have sufficient funds in your account to cover this payment.
  • Remember, the car hire company reserve the right to refuse payment by debit card at the car hire desk.
  • Any credit checks the car rental company need to make on your debit card on arrival, can cause long delays. Be prepared to have to wait.

What advantages are there in paying for car hire with a credit card?

If the car hire company allow payment with a debit card, the “excess payment” will immediately be debited from your account.  On return of the hire car  un-damaged, the excess payment will then be re-credited to your account.  In the interim there may be changes in the exchange rate of the Euro.  You may be credited with an amount less than was debited from your account.

  • Excess Payment.  When payment is made with a credit card the company only holds the payment.  It does not debit the payment unless  required for any damage caused.
  • Excess Insurance.  If you make payment by a debit card, some car hire companies will also require you to purchase their comprehensive insurance cover.  This is irrespective of you purchasing your own insurance beforehand.  You will not have to do this if payment is made by credit card.
  • Credit Card Insurance Cover.  There is a further advantage of paying by credit card and paying for anything over £100.  If the car hire company ceases to trade etc you can obtain a refund from the company issuing your card.

Although not impossible to hire a car without a credit card, we would always advise for peace of mind, saving time and money, that you take a credit card with you to the car hire desk when you arrive at Tenerife South Airport.

I Don’t Have a Credit Card

It is possible to hire a car with some of the smaller car hire firms on the Island without a credit card.

You can spend a lot of time looking for smaller independent companies who will rent a car without a credit card.  We would advise that you research these properly and check their Terms & Conditions before booking.

Ringing the car rental company before you arrive is sometimes the easiest way to check their policy regarding payment.




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