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thrifty - taupo airport car hire companies

With over 1200 branches in over 60 countries worldwide, Thrifty is firmly established as one of the world’s leading car rental brands. First established in the United States in 1958, its worldwide headquarters are in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

In New Zealand …we have been operating since 1986…The Thrifty franchise for New Zealand is owned by Thrifty Australia, a 100% subsidiary of the NRMA group, Australia’s largest motoring association with over $A1b in assets.

…provide one of the best fleets of vehicles for your driving pleasure…Our fleet of new vehicles are constantly being replaced so that the most up to date models are always available with only low kilometres. The average age of vehicles on our fleet is just 6 months. Our aim is to consistently offer your clients a late model, low mileage vehicle in tip-top order at exceptional value.

…across a nationwide network of airport and city locations…Currently in over 30 locations throughout New Zealand including all major airport terminals and city locations, we are always looking to expand into other areas as demand requires.

The New Zealand head office is in Christchurch and we operate over 20 airport and city depots throughout the country.  With an extensive range of the latest model top quality cars, minibuses, 4-wheel drives, sports and luxury cars, the fleet is one of the best and youngest available in New Zealand. An average vehicle age of just 6 months and Qualmark endorsed as a 'Superior' provider of visitor transport means you can travel with confidence when you rent with us.

Whether you’re traveling on business, for pleasure or any other reason, let us help you get on the road.  Our friendly staff will aim to make your vehicle rental experience as pleasant and hassle free as we can.

thrifty depot information

Thrifty Rental Terms for travel between 21-Nov-2014 and 31-Dec-2019

Rental Period
Rates are based on a minimum rental period of one day (24-hours from the time the rental starts). At Thrifty we allow a 59-minute grace period, after which a extra full day will be charged. On wholesale (inclusive tour voucher) rentals an extra full day will be charged.
Hours of Operation 
- Auckland City is open from 0700-1800hrs 7-days a week.  
- Christchurch City is open from 0800-1630hrs Mon-Fri and 0800-1200hrs Sat & Sun. 
- All other city/downtown locations are generally open from 0800-1630hrs Mon-Fri and 0900-1200hrs Sat.  Vehicle pickups/deliveries outside of these hours are on request for  these locations.   
- Airport locations are open to meet reservations off all scheduled commercial flights.

Location Notes
Taupo & Gisborne Airports
Vehicle Pickup A uniformed Thrifty representative will be standing in the terminal with a name board to meet all pre-booked clients.
Vehicle Return Park vehicle in the designated Thrifty Car Parks. Complete the drop off details as noted on the Rental Agreement folder. It is important to record the time and date of drop
off, odometer and fuel gauge reading.  Leave the completed Rental Agreement folder in the vehicle. The rental will be finalised and a copy of the completed agreement posted to you.

Taupo Airport - Place keys in the Key Drop Box inside the terminal by the the Air NZ

Gisborne Airport – Return keys to the Air NZ counter upon check in.

Dyer St & Airport - Mon to Fri 8.00am to 5.00pm. Sat 9.00am to 1.00pm for pick up and drop off. For after hours drop offs please use the Drop Slot, front door City or Drop keys at Air NZ
Desk at the Airport.

Kerikeri, Waipapa & Kaitaia
Mon to Fri 8.00am to 4.30pm. Sat 9.00am to Noon for pick up and drop off. After hours Key Drop Box located at Entrance of airport and Signed Car Park. By prior arrangement only.

Auckland Airport
Auckland Airport comprises 2 terminals – Domestic and International. Thrifty has offices at both terminals.  Domestic – in the rental car area underneath the multi level car park outside the terminal.  International – in the international arrivals hall.

Auckland City 
Vehicle returns outside of opening hours are to be returned to the BP Petrol Station at the bottom of Khyber Pass Road and the keys handed in to the BP counter staff.

Wellington Ferry Terminal
Thrifty has a counter in the Interislander Ferry Terminal in Wellington, this branch also services city hires.

Picton Ferry Terminal
Thrifty has an office and dedicated car parking on the ferry wharf in Picton.  For reasons of staff safety, Thrifty will meet pre-booked clients arriving off all scheduled ferry services between the hours of 0800hrs and 1800hrs only. Reservations for pick-up outside these hours are on a ‘request’ basis only and an additional fee will apply.
There are no direct pick ups from the Railway Station.  All vehicle pick ups and returns are done at the Whall Street depot located in the centre of town beside McDonalds, a 2 minute
walk from the Station.

There is a Thrifty Desk inside the terminal but all pick ups will be met. If counter is not staffed upon vehicle return, place keys in the Thrifty Drop Box.

All pick ups will be met. Upon drop off, leave keys with airport desk.
Airport / Ferry Terminal Service Charges (AFSC)
Rentals commencing at airports and inter-island ferry terminals are subject to a nominal Service Charge (AFSC).

Comprehensive Motor Vehicle Insurance including third party and public liability is included in our rates.  An accident damage excess (ADE) does apply.  

Accident Damage Excess (ADE)
ADE applies to all rentals. This excess may be reduced (at the renter’s option) at the time of rental by purchasing Accident Excess Reduction (AER) or Total Protection Package (TPP).

Accident Excess Reduction (AER)


Vehicle Class Damage Excess AER (per day) Reduced Excess
ECAR to PCAR $3,450.00 $28.75 $345.00
IFAR to XVAR $4,025.00 $34.50 $575.00

Total Protection Package (TPP)



Vehicle Class Damage Excess AER (per day) Reduced Excess
ECAR to PCAR $3,450.00 $34.50 nil
IFAR to XVAR $4,025.00 $40.25 nil

The Premium Location charge which is charged separately is - $46.00.

*all the above prices include GST.

The renter will be fully liable for any damage to the Thrifty vehicle and any third party property, if the terms and conditions of the rental agreement are breached.

Accident Excess Reduction (AER)
This  excess  may  be  reduced  (at  the  renter’s  option)  at the  time  of  rental  by  purchasing Accident Excess Reduction (AER).  The current rates are listed below and are inclusive of GST:

Accident Excess Reduction (AER) $27/ day $27/ day
Reduced Excess (With AER)
Glass Excess (With AER) $270
NIL $337.5
Glass Cover Insurance (GCI) $5.62 $5.62
Reduced Glass Excess (With GCI) NIL NIL

Glass Cover Insurance (GCI)
The excess on glass only (windscreens, windows, headlights) may be reduced (at the renter’s option) to NIL at the time of rental by purchasing GCI.  GCI may be purchased alone or in conjunction with AER above.  Some AER options may include GCI.
(ADE and fuel bonds are refundable when vehicle is returned upon completion of the hire, undamaged and full of fuel – refunds may take up to 10 working days to process)


Thrifty New Zealand welcomes payment by credit or debit cards. Thrifty accepts Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Diners Club cards. The credit/charge card must be in the name of the authorised renter. Third party credit/charge cards are not accepted. Please note Thrifty will charge a transaction fee of 2% + GST for all amounts transacted on a credit card. Renters will be required to leave credit card details as a deposit. Thrifty will pre-authorise the credit card for NZD$250.00 as a security bond.


Vehicle Collection and Return
It is normally expected that clients will make their own way to the Thrifty depot to collect or return their vehicle. However. subject to staff availability at time of commencement or finalisation of rental, Thrifty will deliver free to hotels. motels, and offices within a ten-kilometre radius of the Thrifty location. This service is on a pre-booked request basis only between the hours of 9:00am and 4:00pm Monday to Friday (Excluding public holidays). Delivers outside these hours must be pre-arranged and additional fees may apply.

Fuel is not included in our rates.  Each vehicle is supplied with a full tank of fuel, which is refilled at the renter’s expense on return.  If the vehicle is not returned with a full tank, the renter will be charged for the fuel required to refill the tank at the prevailing rate applicable by Thrifty at the time.  All other fuel charges are for the responsibility of the renter.

24 Hour Emergency Breakdown Service
Whilst Thrifty vehicles are regularly maintained, unexpected breakdowns can  occur.  Thrifty provides FREE Roadside Assistance, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year through the New Zealand Automobile Association (NZAA).

One Way (Intercity rentals)
For even greater convenience and flexibility, one-way rentals are available on most vehicle groups between most Thrifty locations in the same island. Some restrictions may apply during peak periods. 
A minimum charge of 3 days applies to Intercity (one way) rental sectors.  If a client requests an inter-city rental or rental sector of less than 3 days, a 3-day charge will still apply. 
Additional fees may also apply for pick-up or drop-off destinations where Thrifty does not have a location. We would be happy to consider any request and quote accordingly on a case-by case basis. So if someone wants to collect a vehicle at Mt. Cook, check with us first before you say ‘No’!

NB: GST, ADE(insurance excess), AER(excess reduction), Airport / Ferry charges subject to change.
No remote location pick up/drop off fees.
Remote Pick up / Return Fees for Satellite Locations
Incl GST Pick up  Return Pick up & Return
Kaitaia NA $112.5 NA
Keri Keri $56.25 $56.25 $112.5
Taupo  $73.15 $73.15 $112.5
Hokitika $50.65 $50.65 $101.30
Westport $163.15 $163.15 $326.30

Good & Service Tax
Good and Services Tax (GST) is a government charge currently levied at 12.5%. We reservethe right to amend any rates quoted inclusive of GST or, where GST is to be added to charges made, should the rate of GST alter.

Sundry Rental Equipment
Any request for sundry rental equipment must be made at time of reservation.  The following items are available at the rates shown. (NB. When requesting a child seat of any description you must advise the child's age)
Ski Racks
Snow Chains
Baby Capsules(0-6months)
Child Seats(6 month - 3.5 Years)
Booster Seat (3.5 years)

All charges for sundry rental equipment are payable by the renter at the Thrifty counter and are subject to change.

Maps are available free of charge.  We have available for clients to choose from, maps for individual areas around NZ, AA guides to North & South Islands and a complete NZ travel and touring map.

Multi - Hire & Island - Hooper Rentals
There are a couple of different options for clients that require more than one rental sector during their travels around New Zealand.  For example, on rentals involving both North and South Islands, vehicles can not be taken inter-island. Renters leave their vehicle on one island and collect another vehicle on the next island. (Thrifty has an office at the ferry terminal in Picton.)

- Same city return – minimum length of hire just 1 day
- Each one-way rental sector must be a minimum of three days
- Clients can have up to 72 hours between returning one vehicle and picking up their next vehicle
- Clients can mix and match different vehicle sizes within each rental sector of the multi-hire
- Multi-Hires may comprise a number of rentals at different depots within one Island but a minimum of 3-days still applies for any one way sectors.

Island crossover dates and times must also be advised at the time of booking the first rental, to enable the second and/or subsequent vehicle(s) to be booked. If the Tour Operator is unable to provide a confirmed crossover date for any reason, Thrifty will estimate one and the onus will be on the renter to re-confirm the crossover date(s) with Thrifty at or prior to the time of collecting their first vehicle. Thrifty cannot guarantee to supply a second or subsequent vehicle unless a booking has been confirmed.  Changes to confirmed bookings are subject to vehicle availability.  We also recommend that renters are advised to reconfirm their second or subsequent bookings at least 72 hours in advance.

There are occasions where some clients wish to retain the use of one vehicle for a two-island  visit.  This  is  permissible,  but  the  client  must  pay  for  any  inter-island transportation  costs  for  the  vehicle.  The  vehicle  must  be  returned  to  a  Thrifty
location within the same island that the rental commenced.

Calculating the number of days and daily rate
When calculating the rate for a Multi-Hire rental, apply the applicable daily rate that reflects the total number of days the customer is renting the vehicle(s).  Where multi island hires cross two seasons (ie; rental commences high season & completes in low season) the daily rate applicable for the entire hire is based on the date the hire commences. 

If the client has no more than 24 hours between returning one vehicle and picking up the next on any rental sector for the duration of the hire, calculate the total number of days from the starting date and time to the final return date and time (the ‘down time’ between vehicles is considered part of the hire period).

Ie; Pick up AKL 1/6/06 0900hrs, Ret WGN 4/6/06 0900hrs
     Pick up PIC 4/6/06 1200hrs, Ret CHC 7/6/06 1200hrs
= 1/6/06 0900hrs to 7/6/06 1200hrs = 7 days  
Apply the 7-13 day rental rate

If the client has up to 72 hours between returning one vehicle and picking up the next on any rental sector for the duration of the hire, calculate the total number of days by adding each individual sector separately (allows a 59 minute grace period on each rental sector before an extra full day is charged) .

Ie; Pick up AKL 1/6/06 1200hrs, Ret WGN 4/6/06 1200hrs (3 days)
     Pick up PIC 4/6/06 1600hrs, Ret ZQN 8/6/06 0900hrs (4 days)
     Pick up ZQN 11/6/06 0900, Ret CHC 14/6/06 1200hrs (4 days)
Combine all rentals eg: 3 + 4 + 4 = 11 days  
Apply the 7-13 day rental rate.

Ferry Crossings between Islands
For  reasons  of  staff  safety,  we  will  meet  pre-booked  clients  arriving  off  scheduled  ferry services between the hours of 0800 (8.00am) and 1800 (6.00pm) only. Reservations for pick-up outside these hours are on a ‘request’ basis only and an additional fee of $40 + GST ($45 including GST) may apply. This fee will be payable direct to Thrifty by the renter at the time of
collecting the vehicle.

Upgrades/Extension of Rental
Upgrades requested by the renter at the time of rental will be charged the difference between the  vehicle  group  booked  and  the  group  provided  based  on  locally  applicable  rates.  All upgrades are subject to availability.  Additional days not covered by the Tour Operator Voucher will be charged directly to the renter at locally applicable rates.  Downgrades requested by the
renter at time of rental will not be subject to a refund.

Restricted Roads
Driving any Thrifty vehicle on the following roads is prohibited and constitutes a breach of the rental agreement.  The renter would be fully liable for any damage to the Thrifty vehicle or Third party property occurring as a result:
North Island:    Ninety-Mile Beach (Northland)
South Island:    Skippers Canyon Road (Queenstown)

Rental Qualification
All intending drivers must present a valid full national driving licence, which has been held for at least one year.  A current International Driving Licence must accompany driving licences issued in a language other than English.
- The minimum rental age is 21 years. 
-  There is no additional charge for drivers under 25 years of age.
-  There is no maximum age for drivers providing they hold a full, valid drivers licence.
-  There is no extra charge for additional drivers.  Additional drivers must be notified to Thrifty and listed on the rental agreement.

Rental Period
Rates are based on a minimum rental period of one day (24-hours from the time the rental starts). At Thrifty we allow a 59-minute grace period, after which a extra full day will be charged.

NOTE:  Unless  arranged  at  the  time  of  booking,  only  the  pre-paid  daily  amount  can  be collected.  All other charges, are to be paid direct by the client on credit card or cash.  This includes but is not limited to one way charges, fuel, child seats, ski racks, airport and ferry terminal surcharge, Accident Excess Reduction (AER).
Thrifty New Zealand will collect the total value of the hire and all sundry charges from your client upon vehicle pickup.

The payment is to be made by internationally recognised credit card or cash.  Thrifty accepts Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Diners Club cards.  The credit/charge card must be in the name of the authorised renter. Third party credit/charge cards are not acceptable. Renters will be required to leave credit card details as a deposit.  Renters with no credit card will be required to leave a deposit (cash or travellers cheques are acceptable) equivalent to the estimated value of any charges (including applicable Accident Damage Excess – reduced or full), plus a further NZ$100.00.

At the conclusion of the rental any additional charges payable by the renter will be calculated and detailed on the rental agreement, together with any balance to be collected or refunded. Where a cash deposit was taken, and a refund is due to the client, Thrifty will endeavour to refund the appropriate amount to the client at time of finalisation. Should there be insufficient
cash on hand at the time, Thrifty shall arrange for the refund to be made by bank draft in local
currency within approximately 15 days.

Refund Policy
Clients returning vehicles early will be eligible to receive a refund on any unused portion of their voucher from their agent. 
Where for example the client returns early and there remains an unused rental period of the rental, Thrifty will only charge for the actual days the client had the vehicle(s) at the rate applicable for the actual length of hire used.  

NB: The daily rate to the client may alter as the number of days the client had the car for will be charged at the daily rate applicable for that rental period.  Eg; a 21 day voucher with 7 days left ‘refundable’ would be billed as 14 days at the 14-20 day rate, not 14 days at the 21+ day rate as originally booked.

Cancellation / No Show Fee
In the event this booking is cancelled within 5 days of scheduled pickup or if a booking is not cancelled and the customer does not pick up the vehicle (no-show), the customers credit card will be charged with a cancellation fee (100% of Gross rentals)

Frequent Flyer Programmes
Broker bookings are eligible for frequent flyer points.  Customers are eligible to earn points on their rental in any frequent flyer programme that Thrifty participates in.


Terms of booking on this website

Information disclaimer
The rates on this website are often heavily discounted. This is due to our negotiated rates and bulk buying power. On very rare occasions, a rate may be displayed incorrectly due to our, or a vehicle supplier's error. In such a case, if you book with us at a quoted rate that is incorrect, we will notify you of any price change and give you the option to proceed or cancel. We make every effort to keep information on our site up to date, but we cannot guarantee this website is free of errors or omissions and retain the right to update or change the information published at any time.

To the extent permitted by law we/the owners of this website will not be liable to you or to any third party (whether in contract, tort, or otherwise) for any direct, indirect or consequential loss or damage (including but not limited to any accident, injury, delay or loss of enjoyment) arising out of your reliance upon information contained on this website, including but not limited to your use (or inability to use) any products or services described or procured through this website.

When you pick up your vehicle, you will be required to sign a rental agreement with the supplier of the vehicle. Your rental and use of the vehicle will be governed by the terms of the rental agreement and any other documentation or information provided to you by the supplier at the time you pick up your vehicle. The rental agreement is between you and the supplier and we will not be liable to you or to any third party in relation to the terms of the supplier's rental agreement or any other documentation provided to you by the supplier at the time of pick up.

While we will make reasonable efforts to ensure we are representing only reputable suppliers, we make no warranty about the fitness or suitability of any third party (supplier) product or service and will not accept responsibility for the quality or fitness of any vehicle. We welcome feedback from our customers on their experience with our suppliers. We may, at our discretion, provide you with reasonable assistance in resolving any dispute you may have with a supplier.

Our total liability to you in relation to your use of this website and the information contained on this website will not exceed the dollar amount of the deposit we have received from you in relation to your booking/rental. Refunds will not be made for bookings cancelled due to inclement weather. Again, we strongly recommend that you take out travel insurance. Your use of this website is governed by the laws of New Zealand and the jurisdiction of the New Zealand courts.

Booking information
To make a booking you must complete our booking form which is easy to follow and secured with the latest encryption technology. Once we receive your form, we will, subject to availability, confirm your booking by emailing you a confirmation voucher and invoice.

If you are booking via phone, please make sure you have read the terms and conditions of the vehicle you wish to rent first. Our reservations consultant will ask you if you have read the terms and agree to them before proceeding. The onus is always on the renter to ensure they make themselves fully aware of the terms displayed on our website.

Information disclosure
In booking on this website you acknowledge that we disclose your information to your selected Supplier in order to provide the requested rental services.

Vehicle capacity and fitness to drive
Under no circumstances are you permitted to carry more passengers than the vehicle you rent is legally registered to carry, and if you do your insurance may be invalidated. The number of seatbelts (and passengers) is indicated next to each vehicle on this website. Luggage capacity where shown is an indication only and we will not be responsible should you be unable to fit your entire luggage into a vehicle. It is your responsibility to choose a journey that is within your capabilities. A vehicle supplier can refuse to rent a vehicle to any person who is in their opinion unfit to drive or does not meet eligibility requirements. In such circumstances we will have no further liability to you.

Refund Policy
In the event of cancellation, any deposit amounts paid at the time of booking are non-refundable. 

If you are unsatisfied with our service, please contact us within 48 hours of placing your booking or request and we will work to resolve any issues and determine if compensation is due. In the event you have completed your rental and are unhappy with your vehicle, we are happy to assist you in seeking compensation from the operator of the vehicle.

This website is owned and operated by Online Republic Ltd. Our financial centre and marketing office is based at Level 5, 12 Madden Street, Wynyard Quarter, Auckland, New Zealand. In Australia, we are based at Suite 3.01, 11 Queens Rd, Melbourne VIC 3004. Thank you for booking with us.

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