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Iowa Mini Guide

Hiring a car in Iowa and travel around this mid Western US state at your own pace. We work hard to make sure that our prices for Iowa car rental are the lowest online. We check our rates daily to make sure you will not find Iowa car rentals cheaper anywhere else. Iowa is served by several airports, with the largest being Des Moines International Airport (DSM) in the state's capital, Des Moines.  Here's some information to help you with your trip:

Des Moines International Airport (DSM):

Des Moines International Airport is located approximately 5 miles (about 8 kilometers) southwest of downtown Des Moines, making it easily accessible from the city center.

Roads and Navigation:

Roads in Iowa, including around Des Moines, are generally well-maintained and easy to navigate. Upon leaving the airport, you'll find clear signage to guide you.
Des Moines is served by a network of highways, including Interstates 35 and 80, which intersect in the city. These major highways provide access to various parts of Iowa and neighboring states.


Traffic conditions in Des Moines are generally moderate compared to larger metropolitan areas. You may encounter some congestion during rush hours, but traffic is usually manageable.

Attractions to Visit with your Car

Iowa offers a variety of attractions and destinations that you can explore by car. Some of the nearest attractions from Des Moines include:

Pella: Known for its Dutch heritage, Pella is approximately a 45-minute drive southeast of Des Moines. It's famous for its annual Tulip Time Festival and charming architecture.

Amana Colonies: Located about 2 hours east of Des Moines, the Amana Colonies are a group of historic German settlements known for their craftsmanship, cuisine, and culture.

Iowa City: This vibrant city, home to the University of Iowa, is around a 2-hour drive east of Des Moines. Explore the university campus, museums, and cultural events.

Field of Dreams Movie Site: Made famous by the film "Field of Dreams," this attraction is located in Dyersville, Iowa, about a 3-hour drive northeast of Des Moines.

The Bridges of Madison County: Made famous by the novel and film, the covered bridges of Madison County are located about a 40-minute drive southwest of Des Moines.

John Wayne Birthplace and Museum: Visit the birthplace and museum of the iconic actor John Wayne in Winterset, approximately a 45-minute drive southwest of Des Moines.

RAGBRAI: If you're visiting in late July, you might catch the Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa, a popular event that traverses the state from west to east.

Iowa offers a mix of cultural, historical, and natural attractions, and exploring by car allows you to experience the state at your own pace. Whether you're interested in history, outdoor activities, or cultural events, you'll find plenty to see and do in Iowa.

Cheapest car hire in Iowa

Key Highlights for Car Hire at Iowa: Making the Most of Your Journey.

  • The name comes from the Native American tribe, the Ioway who lived in the region
  • Iowa was once part of the French colony called ‘New France’
  • It’s known as the ‘food capital of the world’ on account of its huge annual corn production
  • The capital and largest city is Des Moines which translates from the French as ‘of the monks’
  • Iowa is regularly near the top of the list of safest American states

Popular car hire locations in Iowa

Useful links if renting a car in Iowa

Compare car rental agents in Iowa

Rental Agent
Rating (/10)
Customer Reviews
Mini (€/day)
Compact (€/day)
Intermediate (€/day)
Standard (€/day)
€ 45.20
€ 46.40
€ 47.06
€ 27.34
€ 43.86
€ 45.07
€ 45.73
€ 28.96
€ 46.53
€ 47.74
€ 48.40
€ 27.24
€ 30.53
€ 31.95
€ 32.80
€ 32.96
€ 36.72
€ 62.55
€ 31.14
€ 32.98
€ 36.13
€ 63.74
€ 37.49
€ 37.27
€ 38.62