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Car Rental in USA Massachusetts
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Car Rental in Boston: Driving the Largest City in New England
Boston offers its visitors multitudes, from unique shopping to an overwhelming number of cultural heritage sites to excellent restaurants and eateries for every occasion. While navigating central Boston is certainly easier by foot or public transport, don’t make the mistake that many visitors do and simply stay put in the city. Book your rental car today and make the most of your visit by planning some excursions into Boston’s funky neighborhoods and beyond to the New England countryside.
The best time to visit Boston is from June to October. If you’re visiting in the fall, take advantage of the beautiful fall colors by driving into the countryside as well.
The de facto national language of the United States is English, and while the majority of Bostonians speak English as their native language, about 40% speak other languages as their native tongue, such as Spanish, Haitian Creole, and Chinese. Wampanoag was the primary indigenous language of the area, though it is no longer widely spoken today.
Boston is in the Eastern Time Zone, UTC-5.
The currency throughout the United States is the dollar. Credit cards are accepted at the vast majority of businesses and ATMs are also quite frequent. Unlike the vast majority of regions in the United States, you may find that having some cash on hand is useful throughout New England.
Automobile hire is available in over 10 locations throughout Boston, including Boston Logan International Airport, downtown Boston, and Boston South.
Concord, Massachusetts and nearby Walden Pond, Cape Cod, and Acadia National Park are all spectacular locations well worth a visit for travellers in New England.
38 nationalities can enter the United States as tourists without applying for a visa, though if you are among these nationalities, you are still required to fill out the ESTA in advance. Visit esta.us for more information. Visitors to the United States will be fingerprinted and biometrically photographed upon entry. If your nationality is not included in the visa-waiver program, you will be required to apply for a B-1 or B-2 visa in advance of your arrival.
Driving in Boston
Traffic is fast-paced in Boston, so it is highly recommended to drive defensively in any of Boston’s neighborhoods. You’ll find that driving outside of the city, particularly along rural Massachusetts roads, is much more comfortable than driving in the city itself.
- Traffic drives on the right-hand side of the road throughout the United States.
Typical Speed Limits
- In the city, unless otherwise marked: 30 mph (circa 48 km/h)
- On the Massachusetts Turnpike and most other highways: 65 mph (circa 104 km/h)
- Roads are guaranteed to be packed and slow moving during morning and evening rush hours throughout the city.
- Street parking is strictly enforced and is typically limited to 2 hours and under in any of Boston’s busy metropolitan neighborhoods. If you’re planning on spending a day exploring the city, take advantage of numerous parking garages, but be sure to budget around $30 for the privilege of leaving your car in these secure locations!
- If your license has been issued in a language other than English, an international driver’s permit can be helpful during your visit to Massachusetts.
- Many of the interstate highways around Boston are tolled, particularly the Massachusetts Turnpike and the roads that lead into the city from the airport. Ask your rental company if your car has been outfitted with an EZ-Pass to keep your toll prices low.
- While the minimum driving age in Massachusetts is 18, you will likely have to be at least 21 years old to rent a car, and you are likely to face young-driver surcharges up to the age of 25.
- A GPS or satnav is highly recommended for navigating Boston’s windy streets, as—unlike most American cities—it is not built on a grid!
Cheap Car Rental in Boston
Automobile hire in Boston typically starts at around $25 a day. Here are some of the best deals in Boston:
- Chevrolet Spark or similar (economy class) – $25/day
- Hyundai Accent or similar (compact class) – $26/day
- Toyota Corolla or similar (intermediate class) – $27/day
- Chevrolet Cruze or similar (standard class) – $28/day
- Ford Fusion or similar (fullsize class) – $33/day
Note that prices vary depending on the availability of each specific car and the season in which you rent. For the most accurate offers, use the search bar above.
Tips for Renting a Car Inexpensively in Boston
There is little to no seasonal variation in price for automobile hire in Boston. Instead, you can typically save some money by renting your car from Logan International Airport, where rental companies like Dollar, Avis, and Thrifty offer cheap rental options. Still, it will be worth looking at a number of rental locations throughout the city for your specific travel dates, as you may find that other locations have comparable if not slightly better prices depending on your expected travel period.
You can also typically save over $10 a day if you extend your rental period to over a week!