Tick Japan's Sakura trees with their spectacular cherry blossoms under which mysterious, beautiful Geishas walk off the bucket list, or close some business deals with partners by jetting into Hiroshima Airport (HIJ) then renting a car. With its well-connected roadway system, car hire at Hiroshima Airport is in our opinion the best way to enjoy this rich, historic city plus all the diverse things it has for travellers to experience. As Japan is a leading car producer, car rental companies can offer you a wide variety of new, luxurious models to choose from.
While car hire at Hiroshima Airport has an extensive range of cars, you will notice one thing: you can only choose between two classes: compact/economy, or a van. This is mainly due to the traffic volume and restricted parking spaces that are common in Japan. Keep this in mind if you are travelling in a group that is too big for a compact car while too small for a van. In this case, we recommend perhaps hiring one economy and/or one compact car, or two compact/economy cars. When you do this, you will need two designated drivers (or more). You will also need extra driver documentation.
There are some differences when renting a car in Japan, compared to renting in other locations. Typically, Japanese rental companies don't charge a security deposit or an additional driver’s fee. However, they have extra strict regulations. Here is a quick outline for you: all drivers must have international licence permits, less than 12 months old. The permit must be issued under the Geneva convention, as they don't accept those issued under the Vienna convention. If you have a licence issued in France, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, Monaco, Slovenia, Estonia, or Taiwan you need to submit an official embassy translated verification letter. We suggest you do this for other EU or EEA countries too, just to be on the safe side.
Hiroshima Airport car hire agencies include quite comprehensive insurance as part of the rental agreement. The usual standard insurance includes protection from theft of the car, damage from a car accident and third party cover, but, as an added extra, they also include personal accident insurance (abbreviated as PAI). There are fixed excesses applied in each case. If you want zero excess and better cover, we always recommend adding extra insurance. You can also request insurance for the tyres, windows, lights/windscreen. These can be quite expensive repairs, so don't get caught off guard.
Book your car hire at Hiroshima Airport at least 2 weeks before your trip in order to get a below-average price
FAQs about hiring a car at Hiroshima Airport
You can find the car rental counter in the Domestic Arrivals lobby on the first floor. From the counter, a complimentary shuttle will take you over to the sales office for your vehicle. The shuttle takes about 5 to 10min. This is because of the airport layout, plus the volume of passengers, so it works to your advantage.
Hiroshima Airport is consistently busy from 08:00 20:00 without a lunchtime lull in traffic or users. The best option is to book a car with online check-in then trust the efficiency for which Japan is famous.
From the airport you have many options regardless of whether you are staying outside the city or want to go and discover the beautiful countryside. There is easy access by highway (432 as well as E2) as well as the main arterial routes (73, 49, 59 and 82).
Local surcharges, taxes and other fees are not included in any rental. These include toll fees, congestion fees, traffic and/or parking fines. If you incur any of these, the company will notify you when you return the car, or later, by email.
Car hire companies that offer shuttle or pick-up services from Hiroshima Airport to off-airport locations include Europcar, Hertz, National, Nippon Rent-A-Car, Nissan Rent-A-Car, ORIX Rent a Car, and Times.