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    Car hire in London at the best rates

    As the capital of the United Kingdom, London, is a modern, vibrant but equally ancient city. The River Thames runs right through the heart of the city and has played a central part in its development. Towards the west of the city you will come across world renowned names such as, Carneby Street, Leicester Square, Piccadilly Circus, Chelsea and of course Knightsbridge, where you will find Harrods. On the Southbank of the city you will come across the Royal Festival Hall, London Eye, theatres and numerous coffee houses, restaurants, bars and clubs. The city centre is the UK's financial powerhouse, with multiple iconic buildings, such as the Shard at London Bridge.

    When you hire a car with Auto Europe you are assured the lowest costs combined with the highest level of customer service. With more than 70 convenient locations across London, from Heathrow Airport and Victoria Station, to Paddington and Kensington, we make it easy for you to get on the road for your next adventure. Whether you need a car hire in London for a long weekend, a minvan for a family holiday or are just treating yourself to a flashy sports car, Auto Europe's extensive fleet of vehicles can accommodate any need. For inspiration on where to travel to with your car hire, visit our filming location road trip page. For added peace of mind, please visit our London car hire reviews page to see what our many customers have to say about Auto Europe's services in London.

    How is the traffic in London?

    As in any city, the smaller the vehicle, the more maneuverability and ease of parking you will have. It is a good piece of advice for anyone willing to drive their car hire in London. Various zones in Central London have daily congestion charges between the hours of 07:00 and 18:00 on the weekdays. These zones are signed with a capital C on a red background. Payment of the congestion charge permits you to travel in and out of that zone as frequently as you wish on that given day. For additional information, check out these methods available for paying congestion charges.

    Where can I park my car hire in London?

    Pay Display parking is available throughout the city. There are both traditional metered bays, as well as pay-by-phone ones - which require you to call in your parking fee. Therefore, when bringing your car rental into London be cognizant of the signs and don't assume because there isn't a meter that it's free! Central London also has numerous commercial parking garages designated by a white P on a blue background. To learn more about driving regulations in London, Auto Europe's UK driving information page can provide further details.

    London Airports

    London has a total of five serving international airports. Some closer to the city then others, but all providing good coverage in their own right. The main London airport, and the only one with an underground connection, is Heathrow Airport. Located to the west of London, this airport is one of the busiest in Europe. London Gatwick, is located south of London and is easily reachable by the Gatwick Express train. London Luton is located to the north of London and Stanstead Airport towards the northeast. London City Airport, although in the east end of London, primarily serves the private business market, but some shorter distance flights are also available.

    Heathrow Airport - (LHR)
    Heathrow Airport is an international airport located approximately 19 miles to the west of Central London.
    Telephone: +44 0844 335 1801

    Gatwick - (LGW)
    The estimated distance between Gatwick Airport (located to the south), and Central London is 29 miles. LGW offers worldwide flights to business and leisure passengers.
    Telephone: +44 0844 892 0322

    Stansted Airport - (STN)
    You will find Stansted Airport around 34 miles northeast of Central London. It provides flights to international travelers.
    Telephone: +44 0844 335 1803

    Luton Airport - (LTN)
    Sited north of London, Luton International Airport is less than 31 miles from the city centre.
    Telephone: +44 0158 240 5100

    London City Airport - (LCY)
    London City Airport is located near Canary Wharf, the new financial district of London and offers air transport to international locations.
    Telephone: +44 0158 240 5100

    What to do in London

    • London Dungeon: The London Dungeon was opened 1974 and was designed to take tourists on a voyage through 1000 years of London's history. From the Great Fire of London to Jack the Ripper, the London dungeon uses a variety of actors, shows and rides to dazzle and draw its visitors into that era. Not for the faith hearted - the dungeon portrays skeletons, the torturer and the plague doctor, amongst others. It is now located on the South Bank, near the London Eye attraction.

    • Museum of London: If you'd like to discover London deeper, then a visit to the Museum of London at London Wall is a must. Depicting London's history from the prehistoric era until present, this museum opened its doors in 1976 and currently has around six million objects on display. With the largest collection of urban history in the world, the museum hosts over one million visitors per year.

    • London Eye: The imposing London Eye is situated on the South Bank of the River Thames, opposite the houses of parliament and Big Ben. It is a 541 feet (135 meter) high ferries wheel overlooking the city of London. Designed by architect Frank Anatole, and opened in 2000, Europe's tallest ferris wheel, the London Eye greets over 3.75 million tourists per year and is the most popular tourist attraction within the United Kingdom.

    • Lego Land Windsor: For those with families, or even if you just enjoyed Lego as a kid, Lego Land Windsor is the ideal place to visit. Sited just outside the M25, west of London, this Lego themed resort was opened in 1996. With many of its attractions built solely from Lego, it also has two roller coaster rides, six water rides and a total of 55 attractions to help you pass your day. With an estimated 2.1 million visitors per year it has 12 themed lands; The Beginning, Imagination Centre, Duplo Valley, Miniland, Adventure Land, Pirate Shores, Heartlake City, Knight's Kingdom, Land of the Vikings, Kingdom of the pharaohs and of course Lego City.

    • Buckingham Palace: When in London it is generally customary to go and visit the queen... ok, so you wouldn't be allowed inside but a photo outside Buckingham Palace's gates is solid proof of your visit to the city. With 775 rooms and the largest private garden in London, it became the official residence of the British monarch in 1837. When visiting, it might be of interest to know, that when the Union Jack flag is flown above the palace, then the queen is currently not there. If on the other hand, the Royal Standard flag is flown, then the queen is present at the palace.

    Best day trips with my car rental in London

    Brighton: Rent a car in London and head to Brighton, a seaside resort located approximately 1.5 hours by car from south of the capital city. A train service is also available from London Bridge, London Victoria and London Blackfriars station to Brighton. The journey times is around 1 hour and is a good stress-free alternative to travelling there. Brighton itself is a vibrant, bustling city with numerous restaurants, cafés and boutique shops. Along with its beach it also has many festivals, museums and a prominent night-life.

    Oxford: Only an estimated 1 hour by car west of London, you will find the quaint city of Oxford. A city which is globally famous for being the home of the University of Oxford, it is filled with examples of every English architectural period. With a large student population, the city boast's many restaurants, cafés, shops, museums and theaters. Oxford is by far one of the most cultural cities in England and day trip here will definitely be enjoyed by the whole family.

    Bath: If you decide to go a little further afield, then the city of Bath is another perfect day trip. Only 1.5 hours west of London by car, Bath was originally a Roman Spa town with many such spa baths existing and frequented to this day. The city itself is an impressive array of Georgian town house architecture, street performers, restaurants, cafés and boutique shops, all of which help it to draw in an estimated 3.8 million visitors per year.

    Geographic Information & History

    It's no surprise that England's capital is the most populated city in the country, as well as one of the busiest global tourist destinations. London is a city that offers a plethora of opportunities from cultural and historical significance, to economic and social development. The Thames River, which flows through the centre of London, is a navigable waterway that has over time, been a valuable resource for commerce, travel and sustenance, however, today it is used primarily for leisurely pursuits. In addition to the Thames, locations such as Trafalgar Square, Big Ben, Hyde Park, and Buckingham Palace are a few of the city's attractions that lure sightseers annually. Those interested in outdoor pursuits, beyond parks and man-made amusements, will benefit from a car hire offering ease of travel to less urbanized areas of England.

    You will find that London's weather can be mercurial, however if based on season average, peak summer temperatures vary from thirteen to twenty-three degrees, while winters see approximately five degrees with minimal snowfall and consistent rainfall. Autumn and spring offers more regular temperate weather.

    London is originally a city of Roman origin although the Great Fire of 1666 obliterated much of the ancient architecture, with exception of structures such as the Tower of London and Westminster Abbey. Buildings that have been built since that time reflect each changing era up to modern day.

    How to get around London

    Bus Routes

    Public bus routes offer a breadth of locations during regular daylight hours, and abbreviated services overnight. Bus lines such as Megabus and National Express, are available for national and international destinations as well. These connections include cities as Edinburgh, Cardiff, Liverpool, Bristol, Birmingham, Paris, Cologne or Amsterdam.

    London Underground

    The London Underground, also known as The Underground, or The Tube, serves greater London as a public metro service. More than 250 stations connect London, and parts of Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Essex. Marble Arch station is a good location for picking-up a rental car in central London. The Underground recently started running an overnight service. The lines are limited to the Vitoria line, Central line, Jubilee line, Northern line and the Piccadilly line (specific tube stations).


    There are several train stations in London of international renown, most of which date back to the mid-19th century. They not only serve as major transportation hubs but suitable bases from which to explore the city's main tourist attractions. For instance, Victoria Station is closest to the iconic Big Ben, Houses of Parliament and Buckingham Palace, while Waterloo Station is perfectly situated for visitors heading for the London Eye.

    Taxis & Minicabs

    Legally licensed and insured taxis are black, and will have a light in the front that displays the word taxi. They can be booked in advance, hailed from the street, or located in designated areas. A minicab may also be pre-confirmed. This is a recommended method to ensure driver and vehicle are adhering to government standards.

    Can I hire a campervan in London?

    Besides car hire, Auto Europe also offers you a campervan hire for London. You can enjoy the comfort of a home on four wheels while discovering natural and historic gems in and around the capital. Feel free to give us a call for more information.

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