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    Car Hire in Manchester at the Best Prices

    Well known for its music and sports scene, the city of Manchester will welcome you in a friendly manner and entertain you during your stay. Not only is this city home to Manchester United and Manchester City football clubs, but it has also given the music scene bands such as Oasis and The Smiths. Moreover, the Industrial Revolution, which set the foundation for the modern, urban world, kicked-off right here. Picking up a car hire from Manchester is surely the most comfortable way of getting to know this lively, flourishing English city. Another contemporary pearl, Liverpool, the birthplace of The Beatles, awaits you only 33 miles to the west. The history-packed city of York as well as Leeds, the commercial centre of Yorkshire, is also within easy reach with your rental car.

    Choosing to collect a car in Manchester enables you to make the most of your holiday in this wonderful city and beyond. With Auto Europe an abundance of local knowledge is at your disposal. For over 60 years Auto Europe has been providing cost effective car hire options across many countries. We don't only provide car hire, but also a motorhome and luxury car hire service. Partnering with some of the top car hire brands, we are able to obtain the best possible quote, from a large array of cars, and with pick-ups in airports, city centres and train stations. Contact us today to find out how cost effective and efficient finding a car hire is. Read out car hire reviews in Manchester page to see what previous clients have thought of our rental service in Manchester.

    How is the traffic in Manchester?

    Despite a high number of one-way streets, Manchester city centre and the nearby districts are driver-friendly and easy to navigate with your own vehicle. Attractions and sights of interest to tourists are very well signposted. Driving your car rental in Manchester will certainly be a pleasurable experience although there are a few road rules and regulations you should be aware of. Bus lanes are normally painted red and operate during the week day and on saturdays. Some bus lanes do vary and if this is the case then a sign post at the beginning of the bus lane is present with its operating times. Only busses and taxis are allowed to use the lanes with cameras along its route to fine anyone else who enters it. Similarly, many buses have cameras to catch anyone using the lanes.

    A red route is a single red line along the side of the road. This means that you are not allowed to stop your vehicle at any time or day - not even to drop someone off. A double yellow line means that you are not allowed to park or wait with your vehicle during the times indicated on the upright signs, which are located on the pavement. A single yellow line has the same restriction as the double yellow line but it normally is not opetational on a sunday or bank holiday, unless otherwise stated.

    Where can I park my car hire in Manchester?

    If you rent a car in Manchester make sure you’re aware of the parking restrictions within the city. On-street parking is divided into four zones – each with their own restrictions and charges. All zones are active from the hours of 08:00 until 20:00, Monday to Sunday. For zones one and two, a maximum stay of two hours is imposed. For zone three a maximum stay of three hours, and for zone four – a maximum stay of ten hours, not including weekends. From 20:00 until 08:00 there is no charge across all zones or on bank holidays. Blue badge holders are also provided with free parking across the city centre.

    In addition to on-street parking you may also park in one of the numerous car park garages provided. In Manchester City Centre, NCP operates 43 car park garages and offers via its website a chance to pre-book parking. APCOA also provides 6 car park garages in central Manchester – one of them is located at Manchester Piccadilly Train Station. CitiPark provides an additional 5 car park garages in central Manchester – all of which are near the Manchester Piccadilly Train Station. To get more information regarding driving in the UK please click here to learn more.

    Manchester Airport

    With its three terminals, Manchester Airport is amongst one of the busiest European airports and also the largest one in the United Kingdom outside the London region. Situated approximately 9 miles south-west of the city centre, it is easily accessible by road. By car you are able to get to the airport in only 30 minutes. The airport is also very well connected by rail and bus services, which operate 24 hours. Adjacent to terminals 1, 2 and 3, there is the official short-stay multi-storey car parks. Due to the "No Waiting" restriction for security reasons, only the short-stay car parks may be used for all pick-ups. Several private car parks as well as the airport's long-stay car parks are located about a mile away. They are served by a shuttle bus four times an hour and can often be a cheaper alternative to parking directly on-site.

    Manchester Airport (MAN)
    Telephone: +44 871 271 0711
    Address: Manchester M90 1QX, United Kingdom

    What to do in Manchester

    This wonderful city has lots to offer visitors. With restaurants, coffee houses, bars and pubs, Manchester, being an extremely lively city has always something to do. Visit one of the major Manchester football stadiums or stroll along Manchester's Chinatown. Here are some of our must do's for maximising your stay:

    • Salford Museum & Art Gallery: The original museum was opened in 1850 and since then has seen numerous name changes and extensions. With an estimated 1.6 million annual visitors, an exciting line-up of permanent and temporary exhibitions is presented. Take a journey through Victorian times in the Lark Hill Place exhibition. Explore numerous paintings, fine arts, handcrafts, decorative tiles and unique pottery.

    • Lego Discovery Centre: An excellent choice to visit for those with little kids or even those who are a kid at heart. The centre has lots of child friendly attractions and even a 4-D movie hall. A journey through how Lego itself is made is very interesting and likewise is the abundance of classes hosted by model builders themselves. With restaurants and gift shops selling every type of Lego toy, the centre is also the perfect location for hosting a birthday party!

    • The Lowry: Opened in 2000, this theatre and gallery is named after L. S. Lowry, a 20th century painter. The gallery is dedicated to displaying the painter's life work, together with other paintings. To date it has a total of 400 pastel, watercolour and oil paintings. Multimedia is also used to encourage visitors to participate in the exhibitions. In addition to the gallery, the complex also has two theatres and a drama studio, in which many musicals, drama and comedy shows are held.

    • National Football Museum: Manchester is iconic for football, so it is only fitting that a must visit, especially for those passionate about the sport, would be to England's National Football Museum. Collections of football memorabilia from among the ages come together all within this 1994 museum. Set over six floors, there is much to see and do. From viewing the first ever rule book - dating back to 1863, to taking in loads of information about stadiums, players, trophies and managers. The fun isn't just restricted to historical facts; you'll also get the opportunity to play with football related toys and games!

    • Chinatown, Manchester: This vibrant city is another beacon of multiculturalism within the UK. With no better example than in Chinatown. The third largest Chinatown in Europe, it contains many Chinese, Nepali, Malaysian, Japanese and Thai restaurants, shops and supermarkets. Entering this area you can be forgiven for thinking you are in the Far East. Here you will find "The Archway" monument, built in 1987 and shipped from China to Manchester, this monument is an excelent example of Chinese art. Chinatown is an extremely lively part of town, especially as night falls.

    Best day trips with my car rental in Manchester

    Even with so much to see and do in the city itself, venturing further a field with your car hire from Manchester is the perfect solution to discovering the rest of the UK. Manchester is well placed for a trip to Liverpool, a city which is also full of history and charm. Likewise, the seaside resort of Blackpool isn't too far and nor is Bolton, Stockport or indeed northern Wales. Here are some recommended day trips to help you on your way:

    City of Liverpool

    Only 1 hour west of Manchester is the City of Liverpool, famous for Liverpool Football Club, the Beatles, Frankie goes to Hollywood and RMS Titanic; this wonderfully cultural city is full of history. The city is internationally known as the World Capital City of Pop. With an abundance of museums, concert halls, restaurants, bars, pubs and coffee houses, there is always something to see and do in this city. The city has a strong connection to literature, visual arts and performing arts. The Empire Theatre, which has the biggest two tier auditorium in the UK, is located here, along with the World Museum, Central Library, Walker Art Gallery and the Picton Reading room.

    Seaside Resort of Blackpool

    A little over an hour from Manchester is the seaside resort town of Blackpool. With its 7 mile sandy beach, Blackpool became one of the most popular British seaside resorts. With its promenade, piers, pubs, trams, shops, theatres, fortune-tellers and donkey rides - you will find plenty to do. Even after the effects of cheap international air travel, that led many Brits to take their summer holidays abroad. Blackpool still attracts millions of visitors per year. Together with the Blackpool Tower, lights, Pleasure beach, zoo, waterpark and winter gardens, you'll find that Blackpool is still a worthwhile place to visit.

    Northern Wales

    If you fancy great landscapes, green rolling hills and exploring the outdoors, think about heading over to North Wales. Around two and a half hours from Manchester, Wales is a great place to get away from it all. This part of Wales is very rural, with numerous valleys and mountains to explore. Set on the Irish sea, you will discover many inlets, lakes and secluded beaches. The mediaeval castles of Caernarfon, Conwy, Beaumaris, Harlech, Dolbadarn and Criccieth are great for spending an afternoon in. Likewise the two cathedral cities of St. Asaph and Bangor are great to visiting. It is also good to note for when visiting, that although many speak English, a local Welsh dialect is also spoken. This part of Wales also boasts two UNESCO world heritage sites; the Edwardian castles (as previously mentioned) and the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal.

    Peak District National Park

    Travelling southeast from Manchester and only 45 minutes away is the Peak District National Park. This national park is an amazing place to visit and contains a lot of outdoor fun for the whole family. From cycling, hiking trails, running, camping or simply barbequing, this park is the polar opposite of Manchester. Covering 555 square miles, the park contains rivers, woodlands, limestone and pastured land. Stanage and Roaches are globally known as one of the best rock climbing areas. Water sports such as fishing, canoeing and sailing are popular here, as well as hand gliding, bird watching, off-roading and paragliding. In essence, a visit to England's first ever National Park is the perfect nature adventure.

    Geographic Information & History

    The city of Manchester is nowadays the most densely populated settlement within the Greater Manchester area. It's located north of the Cheshire Plain and south of the Pennines, a range of mountains and hills that separate North West England from Yorkshire. The city centre is situated directly on the River Irwell, which makes for stunning views of the small bridges over it, especially when beautifully lit at night. Although the inner city is mostly flat, there are also modern skyscrapers such as Beetham Tower, a Manchester landmark, thought to symbolise Manchester's revival as a post-industrial city. The tower, among other tall buildings, offers a spectacular view of the moors and peaks of the Pennines, often capped with snow during the winter.

    Manchester, due to its temperate maritime climate, often sees warm summers and cold winters and light rain throughout the year. With July being the hottest month at the average temperature of 16°C, and January the coldest at an average of 4°C, Manchester surely has a diverse but mild climate. October sees most of the annual rainfall - an average of 90mm of rain. It has relatively high humidity and is abundant in fresh water, which contributed to the textile industry blossoming in the area.

    Manchester like other large cities within the UK has a long and rich history. Before the Roman fort was established in 97AD there was little evidence of settlements in Manchester's city centre. The few bronze era artefacts that had been found did not originate at the location. It is believed that Manchester got its name from the Roman fort, Mamucium. The land we know as Salford and Manchester was divided up into fiefdoms by the Normans and subsequently throughout the centuries many lords and barons have taken up residence. Manor houses were constructed along with Manchester castle, and over time a bustling market town arose. In the 14th century a community of Flemish weavers settled in the town and in part contributed to the tradition of producing wool and linen. This tradition would eventually in the 16th century catapult Manchester into a central hub for wool and textile industries.

    Manchester itself however remained a smallish market town until the 18th century, when it was at the forefront of the industrial revolution. With mechanised production the textile industry flourished, and with an extensive canal network linking it to the rest of the UK, Manchester started to boom. With the popularity came the world's first ever passenger railway line, from Manchester to Liverpool and in 1868, it connected to Birmingham and London. The 20th century saw Manchester fall into neglect. With the passing of the industrial era, the city struggled to find a purpose. In 1996 the IRA (Irish Republican Army) detonated a large bomb in the heart of the city causing 200 injuries and damaging much of the local infrastructure. After this drastic event, Manchester turned its fortunes around. It started to invest heavily into new infrastructures, buildings and local regeneration programs. Modern Manchester is a vibrant and exciting city. It successfully hosted the XVII Commonwealth Games and has placed so far unsuccessful bids to host the Olympic Games.

    How to get around Manchester

    The two main modes of transport in Manchester are by light rail or bus. An underground system has not been built yet. Manchester boasts an extensive network of bus routes, with the circular free city bus as a new and welcomed addition. It serves the three busiest routes in the city centre by covering and connecting the main city centre areas with the two main railway stations, important car parks and numerous tram stops.


    Dating back to Manchester's industrial era, the canal system now provides a quick and efficient way to travel from the city centre to MediaCityUK & Salford Quays via a water taxi service. If you enjoy sightseeing and viewing this marvellous city from a different prospective, a water taxi is the perfect option.


    As one of the oldest rail networks, Manchester is at the centre of a countrywide railway system. An abundance of rail lines and destinations are on offer - intercity and locally. Along with Manchester's terminus at Manchester Liverpool Road, which is housed within the tallest building in the city, you also have Manchester Victoria, Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford and Deansgate. The newly planned High Speed 2 line will reduce the journey time from Manchester to London, via Birmingham to only 1 hour 8 minutes.

    Tram (Metrolink)

    Opened in 1992, Metrolink became the UK's first ever light rail system. With seven lines and 93 stops, this tram network mainly serves the city centre. A fast and highly efficient service, this is a great option for getting around Manchester and exploring the centre with minimum stress. An additional line is currently under construction which will link the existing system to Trafford Centre.


    The city has a large integrated bus network that stretches far out into the Greater Manchester area. Manchester is serviced by up to 50 different bus companies with the two main ones being Stagecoach Manchester and First Greater Manchester. Buses are a popular option among the locals, with around 80% of total public transport journeys taking place on a bus. Bus routes run between all towns and districts, with national coaches to other parks of the UK.


    Like all major cities, Manchester has city licenced taxies. These licences are known as hackney carriage, and operate under hackney carriage fares. All taxies are fitted with meter readers which are always used unless you are travelling more than 4 miles outside of the city's boundaries. In this situation, a fare must be agreed between yourself and the driver before setting off on your journey. Mini cab services are also available throughout the city.

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