Why we always rent a car in Orlando

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With our next Orlando adventure less than two weeks away, I wanted to answer a question that I have seen over and over again – do you need to rent a car in Orlando?


There are plenty of ways to get around in Orlando, from theme parks having their own transportation (Disney offer free buses between hotels and theme parks, boats and a monorail) to using Uber cars. However, we would never consider not renting a car when we go to Orlando, and here's why:

Fuel is so cheap

Most of the cars you rent are automatics, meaning they give really poor MPG, but when you consider how cheap fuel is in America, it doesn't matter. Fuel is so cheap that we only have to budget a small amount for it – around $25 a week to stay around Orlando, a bit more if we travel to Tampa.

Getting from A – B quickly

Did you know that Disneyworld recommend 90 minutes from destination to destination? Most of the time it is a lot quicker, but that is still a long time! If you are travelling at peak times, for example when a park is closing, you can be waiting for about 3 buses to arrive before you can get on one heading to your hotel, they're that full! Whereas if you have a car then you can just head straight out.

Easy to drive around

Driving in another country, on a different side of the road with different traffic laws (you can turn right on a red light in America!) can be really daunting. I'll be the first to admit that I find the first drive quite scary (especially if you've just got off a 9 hour flight) but after a good night's sleep I am ready to hit the roads. Both Tony and I love driving over in Orlando – the roads are wider, we haven't encountered road rage and there's something so lovely about country music blasting and driving around my favourite place.

Explore more

Despite this being my 6th annual trip to Orlando, there is still plenty that we haven't done or seen. Having access to a car means that we can explore more – last year I was so excited to find an Aldi, just by driving past! If we were relying on a taxi or a bus then I wouldn't have been able to explore. Who knew that American Aldi stores were different to British stores?

Save money

Having a car means that you can save money when it comes to eating or even buying your souvenirs. Being able to easily head to a supermarket means you can stock up on the essentials much cheaper than using the hotel store or convenience stores. You can also visit off site restaurants and save lots of money when it comes to dining. It also offers a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the theme parks

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4 Comments on “Why we always rent a car in Orlando”

  1. Completely agree! I’m under 25 so most companies would exclude me or charge ludicrous amounts, but Sixt offer decent deals as the Young Driver Surcharge is capped at a certain amount. Public transportation in the Orlando area is unsafe and unreliable (homeless people are unfortunately not always friendly), and driving there really isn’t that scary – if anything, it’s much easier than in the UK. And their fuel really is so cheap, it’s incredible!

    I have encountered a couple of road rage incidents, especially since I stay in downtown and am constantly up and down the I-4 – I had a man roll down the window and flip me off for a good few seconds because I wasn’t breaking the speed limit like him! And another was a young girl waving her arms at me and yelling because she didn’t understand how to merge. If anything, it’s all part of the experience!

    1. Ah I love the I-4! Car on the Drive is a bit more expensive but they don’t have an under 25 surcharge, which is great!

  2. I definitely agree with this. Before I turned 25 I relied on buses (didn’t stay onsite so public buses) to get around and though it is definitely possible where I did it 3 times I prefer these days where I just drive. Automatics are ridiculously easy though if you drive a small car in the UK, it’s a learning curve driving a massive one over there. My friend had to lean over and tell me if I was veering outside the lines when we first got there as I got beeped when we came out of the airport. Overall a car is definitely the best – I’ve done it twice now and I’ve never encountered any problems. 🙂 x

    1. We hired an SUV for our honeymoon last year and I had to jump to get in and out of it! I love it though!

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