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Rental Cars
Big Island Client Profile



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Big Island Rental Cars

Our agency offers excellent rates on Big Island vehicle rentals with Avis Rental Car; they have a location at the Kona Airport (KOA) and the Hilo Airport (ITO). The Hilo Airport is very close to the Hilo cruise ship dock and shuttle service is provided. The Kona Airport is located about 30 minutes away from the Kona cruise ship dock and this is too far to provide shuttle service (see cruise ship information below). While this page is intended to provide information on Big Island rental cars, you may also use the form to the right to reserve a rental car on Oahu, Maui, or Kauai as well.


  Low Season
4/1-6/20, 9/3-11/26, 12/1-12/13
High Season
1/6-3/31, 6/21-9/2, 11/27-11/30
Peak Season






$28 $143 $55 $275 $75 $450


$31 $157 $58 $290 $77 $462
full sized $38 $195 $67 $335 $98 $588
convertible $53 $277 $99 $495 $126 $756
luxury $59 $295 $101 $505 $129 $756
minivan $54 $281 $100 $500 $139 $834


LOW SEASON rates are in effect from April 1 to June 20, September 3 to November 26, and December 1 to December 13.

HIGH SEASON rates are in effect from January 6 to March 31, June 21 to September 2, and November 27 to November 30.

PEAK SEASON (holiday) rates that are much higher are in effect from Dec 14 to January 5

Prices listed above are base rates which do not include rental car tax and facility surcharges. These are the 2013 rates ... dates in 2014 are slightly higher.


  • Ford Focus or similar
  • Seats 4; holds 1 large & 2 small suitcases


  • Pontiac G6 or similar
  • Seats 5; holds 1 large & 2 small suitcases


  • Chevrolet Impala or similar
  • Seats 5; holds 2 large & 2 small suitcases


  • Chrysler Sebring or similar
  • Seats 4; holds 1 large & 1 small suitcases


  • Cadillac DTS or similar
  • Seats 5; holds 3 large & 2 small suitcases


  • Chevrolet Uplander or similar
  • Seats 7; holds 5+ large suitcases

Our recommendations on car sizes; parties of 2 adults and 2 children can comfortably be accommodated in one of the compacts. Midsized is fine for 4 adults. Parties of 5 should request a full-sized car. Minivans will hold a maximum of 7. Convertibles will only hold 4 people.

Some fine print ... which we will leave regular size type so you can really read it ... 

  • While the cost of the rental is paid directly to Avis, our office requires a credit card on file to guarantee the reservation.
  • The driver must be 25 years old or older with a major credit card in his/her name. Drivers 21-25 may also rent, but will need to pay an underage driver charge of $27 per day.
  • Daily rates are for a 24 hour rental period and includes unlimited mileage.
  • You are responsible for whatever liability and vehicle damage insurance you decide to take out on the vehicle, as well as the gasoline consumption, and any GPS units or car seats that you rent from Avis.
  • 48 hours notice required for changes / cancellations of existing reservation

If you are a cruise ship passenger arriving in Hilo, free shuttle service is provided to and from the cruise ship dock. Your email confirmation will contain a phone number for you to call to request a shuttle. Avis shares a shuttle with Budget Rental Car, and the Budget shuttle is typically the one that services the cruise ship dock and runs automatically when a cruise ship arrives. Please note that the time listed for pickup is the time the vehicle is ready for you at the airport location of Avis; they don't schedule cruise ship shuttle pickup in advance. When you are walking off the ship, call them on your cell phone. Even though shuttle service is available, some clients grab a taxi to the Hilo Airport ... it is a VERY short ride and speeds up the time required to pick up the car, so you might consider doing that.

If you are a cruise ship passenger arriving in Kona, shuttle service is NOT provided to the Kona Airport. The distance makes a rental car impractical for cruise ship clients who are in Kona just for the day. You might consider Atlantis Submarines or UFO parasailing as these events require a short walk from the dock. You also could do a fishing charter or a snorkel trip that would only require a short cab ride.

For the record, shuttle pickup is also available on Maui at the Kahului dock where the NCL Pride of America arrives (request Maui-Kahului) as well as the Lahaina dock where most other ships arrive (request Maui-Lahaina). Shuttle service is also available Kauai at the Nawiliwili dock. In Honolulu, public transportation (taxi or city bus) is readily available to the Honolulu Airport, but shuttle service is not provided by Avis in Honolulu.

CAB FARE ADDS UP QUICKLY!!! Rental cars open up the possibility for cruise ship passengers to arrange their own tours and activities independently rather than using excursions arranged by the ship. This will often save you a LOT of money as the cruise lines tend to mark up the cost for shore excursions or offer ones that are done in large buses instead of smaller groups. We don't know of a better way to improve your Hawaii cruise vacation than to gain some independence from the cruise ship during the time that you are in port.

For clients who have already arranged airfare to another island for a day or two or three, this is a quick and easy way to arrange transportation. If you are thinking of flying to another island (say from the Big Island to Oahu to see Pearl Harbor) and you don't have airfare arranged yet, you should check out our fly-drive page for packages that include both airfare and rental car.

Activity Tips

For those spending part of their vacation on the Big Island, the answer is "Yes, you need a rental car" as there is very little public transportation on this island. You'll have a hard time finding rental car rates that are lower than the ones we offer!

We recently watched passengers disembarking from an NCL cruise ship and when they arrived at the dock they walked over and climbed on board a shuttle bus that had the following words painted on the side. "WALMART EXPRESS."  Please, for the love of God, don't spend thousands of dollars coming to Hawaii on a cruise and then end up spending your time in port at WALMART!!! There is so much to see and do, and renting a car will open up options for you that you wouldn't have if you are dependent on your cruise line to arrange all your tours and excursions.


Throughout our website you'll find notes about activities that work for cruise ship passengers if they have a rental car. This is true of the tours featured here on Adventureinhawaii.com, as well as our sister website http://adventuremaui.com (the latter is a very extensive site that focuses just on the island of Maui). We often give the advice "Enjoy your cruise ship when it is at sea; get as far away from your cruise ship as possible when it is in port." Renting a car is a great way to add independence and improve your cruise vacation.


Luaus are a good example. If you attend a luau arranged by the ship, you'll be charged up to $100 or more to be driven by bus to a luau, and you'll be attending with 600 or more other people from your same cruise ship. You'll have no control over where you sit, and you could end up so far from the stage that you'll wish you brought a pair of binoculars. The same luau that the cruise ship sells on Monday night for $100 is available from us on Tuesday night for $69. The difference in the price of a luau for two people will pay for a rental car for 24 hours! If you are driving yourself to the luau and you don't have reserved up-front seats, you can at least arrive early and get better seats. If you are dependent on the cruise ship's buses to take you to your luau, you have no idea where you sit and no way to improve your seats.


How about overnight parking for Maui and Kauai? Well, in Nawiliwili on Kauai there are several parking lots a block or two from the cruise ship that charge $7-8 per night to park your car. On Maui there is a small lot that is free right across from the security gate. Other parking is nearby; ask your rental car company for more specific parking instructions when you pick up your car. Of course you don't have to use the rental car for the entire 24 hour period ... you can take it back early if you like.





Rental Car Reservations

Where would you like to rent a car?

What car type?


Pickup Date and Time:


Click on calendar icon to set date

Return Date and Time:


Click on calendar icon to set date

Driver's First Name

Driver's Last Name


Country (if other than USA)

Cell Phone

Day Phone

Evening Phone


Name of Cruise Ship or Big Island Hotel

I acknowledge that I have read the booking procedures below and wish to submit this reservation for processing.

Upon submitting your activity reservation for processing, we will make reservations for you and send an e-mail confirming all of the details. These confirmations are often sent a few minutes after your reservation, but some activities take longer to confirm than others. You will receive an e-mail confirmation by the end of the next business day at the latest. There are no tickets that you need to pick up prior to your event. Your e-mail confirmation will have all the details you need to check in and enjoy your selected activity. This saves you precious time when you arrive in Hawaii. 

Please be sure that you have typed your email address perfectly; an incorrect address will prevent you from getting your confirmation details, and we will have no way of knowing that you never received your confirmation. We cannot be responsible for errors that clients make which causes them to miss their tour. If you do not see your email confirmation within 24 hours please call us right away to check on the status of your order.

A credit card is required to guarantee payment for your reservations, but the activities on this page ARE NOT CHARGED when your order is placed. These activities are operated by vendors who charge you at the time of check-in for your activity. Adventureinhawaii.com will provide this vendor with your billing information so that your space is reserved. Even though your credit card is not charged in advance, it is import to realize that you are making a confirmed reservation. No-shows will be charged in full by the activity provider on the credit card used to secure the reservation .

After making reservations, you may reschedule or cancel your activity up until 48 hours prior to its start (a few activities have 72 hour cancellation policies ... see your confirmation e-mail for details). Within 48 hours of the start of your activity all reservations are final and non-refundable (unless the event is cancelled by the vendor due to weather or other factors ... in which case you are refunded in full). Due to our incredible climate here, weather cancellations are rare.  No-shows and cancellations without adequate notice are charged in full on the credit card used to secure the reservation and are non-refundable.





Most rates quoted on this website do not include the Hawaiian state sales tax which adds 4.1667%, 

or the state harbor fee of 3% on boat excursions. Adventureinhawaii.com is a FREE reservations service;

 we have no hidden service charges or fees that we charge for servicing your reservation

ALL TEXT AND IMAGES COPYRIGHT 2000-2011 by ADVENTUREMAUI.COM and ADVENTUREINHAWAII.COM which are wholly-owned subsidiaries of Hawaii Travel and Tours.com LLC

Hawaii Activity Desk License # 852   Hawaii Travel Agency License # 6395



Kona Snorkeling Tours    Fair Wind Snorkel Tour    Hula Kai Snorkel Tour    Big Island Whale Watching

Luaus on the Big Island    Big Island Waterfall Hiking    Atlantis Submarines Kona    Kona Sunset Cruises

Big Island Helicopter Tours    Kona Parasailing    Mauna Kea Summit Tour    Kilauea Volcano Tour

Pearl Harbor from the Big Island    Big Island Rental Cars


Kauai Activities    Oahu Activities    Maui Activities