Car Hire in Maine: A Comprehensive Guide
Maine, fondly known as the Pine Tree State, is a haven for nature enthusiasts, offering stunning coastal drives, dense forests, and historical towns. Hiring a car in Maine provides the freedom to explore its diverse landscapes at your own pace. Here’s what you need to know:
Why Hire a Car in Maine?
Versatility: From coastal routes like the scenic Highway 1 to mountain drives in the Appalachians, a car lets you experience Maine’s diversity.
Accessibility: Many of Maine's attractions, like its iconic lighthouses, charming fishing villages, and secluded beaches, are more accessible with a private vehicle.
Flexibility: With a rented car, you can adjust your itinerary, make spontaneous stops, and take detours whenever you wish.
Key Car Hire Tips:
Advance Booking: Particularly in peak summer months, car rentals can be in high demand. Book in advance to secure your preferred vehicle and better rates.
Know the Season: Maine experiences snow in winter. If you're traveling during this season, consider renting a car with 4WD and ensure it’s equipped with snow tires or chains.
Age Restrictions: Most car hire companies require drivers to be at least 21. However, drivers aged 21-24 might incur an additional "young driver" fee.
Fuel Policy: Check the fuel policy. Typically, it’s “full to full,” meaning you pick up the car with a full tank and should return it with a full tank.
Driving in Maine: Tips & Etiquette
Wildlife: Especially during dawn and dusk, be cautious of wildlife like moose and deer crossing roads.
Speed Limits: Observe posted speed limits: 65-75 mph on highways, 25-35 mph in cities/towns, and 45-55 mph on undivided highways.
Tolls: Maine has several toll roads, notably the Maine Turnpike. Consider getting an E-ZPass or keeping some change handy.
Parking: In popular tourist areas, especially during peak season, parking can be scarce. Look for designated parking areas and adhere to parking regulations.
Coastal Route 1: This scenic route takes you through picturesque coastal towns like Camden and Rockport.
Acadia National Park: Located near Bar Harbor, drive the Park Loop Road for breathtaking views of the rugged coastline.
Rangeley Lakes Scenic Byway: Experience Maine's interior with views of forests, waterfalls, and lakes.
Type of Car to Rent:
Summer: A convertible or sedan is perfect for coastal drives.
Winter: Opt for an SUV with 4WD for better traction on snowy roads.
Nature Trips: If you’re planning to explore off-the-beaten tracks or campgrounds, consider a rugged vehicle.
When Visiting Maine for the First Time:
Weather Preparedness: Maine's weather can be unpredictable. Carry layers, and always have a jacket, even in summer.
Local Delicacies: Make sure to indulge in local seafood, especially the Maine lobster.
Lighthouses: Maine is home to several iconic lighthouses like Portland Head Light and Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse. Many are located in picturesque settings, perfect for a short drive and a photo stop.
Renting a car in Maine offers unparalleled freedom to explore this beautiful state. From its rocky coastlines to dense forests, Maine provides a quintessential New England experience. Ensure you understand the terms of your car rental, drive safely, and enjoy all that the Pine Tree State has to offer!
Whether you need a rental car from Bangor Airport, Portland International or any downtown location in Maine, we can match your needs with the right car at the right price. From budget car rental in Maine to luxury saloons and SUVs, we have a rental car to suit your needs.