Car Hire: Inverness Airport

Inverness is distinguished as Scotland’s “Highland Capital.” However, they still keep its market town vibe that dates back to its early expansion. Today, tourism is one of the most important parts of the city’s economy. 

Inverness is located in the Northern part of Scotland and is one of the smallest cities that house 61,000 people. The city is now quickly growing due to Inverness Airport, its situation in the Highlands, and the well-publicized NC500.

You can see a wide variety of shops in Inverness, where you will find large multinational outlets in small independent stores.

The energetic Inverness Bars and Pubs are the bloodline of the city. Most of these bars now have a great pub grub, as well as entertainment and live music each night of the week.

Places You can Visit from Inverness Airport

With car hire, Inverness and the Highlands are yours to discover…

On leaving the city, bold explorers can drive to Loch Ness to start their quest for the world-famous Loch Ness monster. The northern banks of this magnificent waterway can be reached around 10 minutes from central Inverness. Driving around the lake will give you the best chance to find the mysterious Nessie or to marvel at the beautiful scenery.

Here’s a list of the places you can visit while driving in Inverness.

The Tomatin Distillery

The Tomatin Distillery is a 4-star visitor attraction and a prominent Highland Distillery Visitor Centre where a series of tours are done and award-winning whiskies are ready to be served.

It has a shop in which you can buy Tomatin merchandise and several expressions of Tomatin. You can also fill your own bottle from one of their cask strength distillery exclusive whiskies.

Located just 16 miles south of Inverness, the Tomatin Distillery is very easy to reach for anyone driving to or from the Highlands!

Fortrose Cathedral

The cathedral was constructed by Bishop Robert between 1214 and 1249 after relocating from Rosemarkie and the main materials that were used consist of red sandstone. 

The outline of the remaining cathedral complex was revealed when it was excavated in 1873, and today, you can still see the two sections standing: the chapter house; and the nave’s south aisle.

Here, you can still see the two heraldic bosses drawn on the ceiling of the western chapel. They represent Earl Alexander and Bishop John Bulloch.

And within the aisles, you can see the three arched tombs:

  • The first one is for the Countess of Ross-shire who was forced to marry the Wolf of Badenoch)
  • The second one is for Bishop Fraser who died in 1507
  • The last one is for Bishop Cairncross who died in 1545.

The cathedral was taken into state care in 1851 with restoration works taking place shortly afterward, and further work was done in 1897 when a collapsed masonry was taken out from the site.

Corrimony Chambered Cairn

Constructed some 4,000 years ago, Corrimony Cairn is believed to be a passage grave of the Clava type recording from the 3rd Millennium BC.

Made by Neolithic farmers, proficient in working stone, they were the earliest people to domesticate animals until the land cleared the forests for agriculture and their culture was cooperative.

The Corrimony Chambered Cairn was built for common burials. The views of the people who made the cairn still remain unknown, but it is believed that these individuals existed from 3,500 BC to 1,500 BC.

Open all year for free, it is located in Glen Urquhart, just eight miles West of Drumnadrochit off the A831 and over a mile off the main A831 Loch Ness – Glen Affric road up a signed minor highway.  You can park your hired car just before the cairn and you can also locate the information boards for both the cairn and the RSPB Corrimony Nature Reserve.

The Corrimony RSPB Nature Reserve is located in charming moorland and Caledonian forest. This wonderful reserve is a treasure trove for anyone who adores birds. In the springtime, you can view the black grouse courting displays. You can also see some crested tits and Scottish crossbills, which can only be seen in Britain.

Beauly Priory Ruin

Dwelled in the village of Beauly, this ruined cathedral of a Valliscaulian priory is one of three established by the order in 1230. A portion of the building was later rebuilt. And it also became a Cistercian home around 1510. 

A plaque tells that Mary Queen of Scots visited the site in 1564 and all her travels in the Highlands. Descriptive plaques tell all the points of her journey.

Brodie Castle

This exquisite 16th-century tower house is stuffed with lavish art and antiquities to keep connoisseurs smiling all day. The castle shows the captivating story of the Brodie family.

Built by the Brodies in 1567, it is widely believed that they have been connected with the land and the castle since the 1160s when the land was given to the family by  King Malcolm IV.

The castle possesses a central keep with two 5-story towers on facing corners. As related with other homes of the time, this tower house has no castle wall, but it has a guardroom and hidden passages to help the occupants escape.

Brodie Castle is distinguished for its excellent daffodil collection and is maintained by the National Trust for Scotland and admits tourists during the summer months.

Established in peaceful parkland, it features exceptional French furniture, English, Continental, and Chinese porcelain; unique plaster ceilings, and a major selection of paintings. This includes 17th-century Dutch art, 19th-century English watercolors, and old 20th-century works. The luxurious library holds some 6,000 volumes.

There is a woodland trail with a big pond and a nature path with access to wildlife observation hides. An ancient Pictish masterpiece known as Rodney’s Stone can be located on the castle grounds. In springtime, the grounds are covered with varieties of daffodils for which Brodie Castle is known for.

Eden Court Theatre Inverness

It is the biggest arts center in Scotland.

Eden Court Theatre is truly a magnificent venue. It extends all types of performing arts, from opera to pop music, concerts, ballet, modern dance, and drama. It’s also equipped with two film studios for cinema.

Whether you are a local or on holiday, you’ll discover something that will surely catch your eyes.

The original Eden Court opened in April 1976 but closed in 2005 as it required serious refurbishment. The new legislation also wants better access for people with disabilities. It re-opened in November 2007 as one of the best-equipped arts centers in the country.

Eden Court Theatre is full of options from the freshest movies showing in its two cinemas. A mixture of performers from drama to comedy, musicals, opera, as well as choral performing in its two theatres.

You can also hit the restaurant at the Eden Court Theatre which is also worth a call in its own right, whether you are scanning for a quick bite or a fond dinner for two. The head chef and his team serve the most excellent local produce at the best prices.

The Caledonian Canal

An engineering masterpiece by Thomas Telford.

Considered to be one of the best-constructed waterways of the world, a treasure of canal engineering, running through the length of the Great Glen, an extensive geological fault in the Earth’s crust.

The canal stretches 62 miles (100 km) in a straight line, starting from Inverness and ending in Corpach near Fort William. One-third of the canal is man-made while the rest consists of four lochs including Loch Ness. The canal boasts 29 locks, 4 aqueducts, and 10 bridges.

The canal is presently a Scheduled Ancient Monument, drawing over half a million visitors each year. There are several ways to relish the canal, walking or cycling along the tow-paths, or sailing on Hotel Barges.

You can locate a small Caledonian Canal Visitors Centre at Fort Augustus which is free to enter and holds some fascinating facts and displays on the canal.

Today the canal is buzzing with vessels and many of them are private pleasure boats from all over the world who come to make the cruise through the fabled lochs through which the canal passes.

The most prominent segment of water that forms part of the Caledonian canal is Loch Ness where you can spot various cruise companies offering a blend of boat trips and cabin cruiser hire to choose from if you feel provoked to take to the water.

You could merge boating with walking segments of the Great Glen Way, which follows about the same route.

Culloden Battlefield and Visitor Centre

The Battle of Culloden happened on Culloden Moor, (a quick drive outside Inverness), on 16 April 1746. It was the concluding battle of the 1745 Jacobite Rising and the Decisive Battle that happened on British soil.

The Battle on Culloden Moor was both swift and bloody. It began with an unsuccessful Jacobite Highland charge beyond flat boggy ground, totally unfit for this previously highly efficient maneuver. The Jacobites troops were soon routed and pushed from the field; the battle only endured for about an hour.

The Battle of Culloden witnessed some 1,500 Jacobites killed or wounded, while government losses were fewer with only 50 dead and 259 wounded.

Loch Ness

Loch Ness has the biggest body of fresh water by volume in Britain. It carries more water than all the lakes and reservoirs in England and Wales combined.

The story originated 380 million years ago when the earth’s crust cracked and moved, occurring in what we call the Great Glen today. The fault line stretches over 60 miles from Inverness in the north to Fort William in the south, of which Loch Ness is included.

Loch Ness is situated 15.8 m (52 ft) above sea level, and it is 39km (24 miles) long, with an average depth of 132m. Its deepest spot is 230 m (755 ft), near Castle Urquhart. You can easily drive right around Loch Ness.

Loch Ness is famously associated with sightings of the Loch Ness Monster, affectionately named as “Nessie.” The Loch’s water clarity is exceptionally low due to a great peat content in the surrounding soil, making the mystery of Nessie even more interesting.

The main road along Loch Ness continues along its northern bank passing Castle Urquhart, while the path back to Inverness on the south is much more tranquil. That’s because it’s far from the main tourist route allowing a different view of Loch Ness and the Highland countryside.

Highland Aviation Museum

Located opposite Inverness airport, across the Dalcross Industrial Estate.

Exhibits from entire aircraft to nose sections, the Museum’s sole attraction is that visitors can climb in some of the cockpits. This is a unique experience, from the narrow cockpit of the Lightning, a jet-fighter capable of twice the speed of sound, to the roomy 54ft front section of Nimrod, the submarine hunter.

Things You can Do in Inverness

You’ll be snapping your camera during walks in the area, as hills, mountains, and waterfalls will fill its lens, frame after frame. The exhilarating Highland air approaches even faster during high-speed mountain biking. However, you might need a helmet cam to capture this raging ride.

To reduce the pace, you can cast a line out and fish for salmon in one of the crystal-clear lakes and rivers surrounding Inverness. You can even try to fish in Loch Ness. But if you want to catch a big fish, be careful what you wish for!

To soothe your nerves after some traumatic Nessie sightings, you can take a tour of one of the leading Highland distilleries.

With the borders of the Cairngorm National Park located just 30 minutes from Inverness, plus the nearest shores, castles, and other parks that can be reached within an hour, car hire is considerably one of the best investments that you could arrange during your trip (aside from those cozy winter woollies).

Driving in Inverness

Going by car is the most excellent way to explore Inverness and this remarkable area of the Highlands. But if you don’t have a car, car rentals at Inverness Airport offer lots of cheap car hire deals so you can tour as many places as you want and linger as long as you please.

Inverness has a wealth of ancient fortifications nearby including Urquhart and Brodie Castles. There is also the Moray Firth, which has a stunning school of dolphins. For enthusiasts of ancient history, a pause at Clava Cairns is a must. You can see three burial cairns that record back as far as 2000 BC.

By taking advantage of affordable car rentals, you can stroll west and pay a visit to the Iron Age hill fort of Craig Phadrig. Or push a little to the east and tour the historic Culloden Battlefield and Fort George.

Scotland’s most popular loch is Loch Ness, the haven of the infamous but rarely seen Loch Ness Monster. The Loch Ness Visitors’ Centre has all the data you require to know about the legendary Nessie. Right alongside the visitors’ center is Scotland’s memorial center to William Wallace.

The wide-open country roads of this area are a delight to drive and the wild Scottish Highland landscape will bring you on your way. What’s more, the extent of outdoor activities makes it an excellent destination for families and children of all ages.

With car hire deals at Inverness Airport, you can enjoy total freedom and be your own tour guide.

Which side of the road?

All vehicles must be on the left side of the road in the United Kingdom.

Country driving laws

  • All mobile phones may only be utilized with the use of a headset or hands-free device.
  • There is a congestion fee that is payable when driving in London.
  • Always use the outside lane when overtaking motorways and dual carriageways.
  • Zebra crossings or pedestrian lanes give pedestrians the right of way to cross the road.

Speed Limits

All speed signs are displayed in mph.

  • Urban areas: 30 mph (48 km/h)
  • Motorways: 70 mph (112 km/h)
  • Rural areas: 60 mph (96 km/h)

Unless designated by road signs.

Child safety / Seat Belt laws

  • The seat belt must be worn by both driver and passenger at all times.
  • Children aged under 12 or less than 135cm tall must be seated in a child restraint appropriate for their size.

Keep in mind that it is the child’s parent, guardian, or vehicle renter’s responsibility to provide the child seat.

Car Rental Companies in Inverness Airport

With the widest array of travel deals at your fingertips, you don’t need to run anywhere else to book cheap car hire in Inverness.

Enterprise

Are you scanning for Cheap car hire at Inverness Airport? Then Enterprise is precisely what you are looking for.

Get the best customer service for an excellent price. Enterprise UK allows you to choose from their wide range of car rentals, for both short-term or long-term rental. Whatever your transport requirements they can provide you, your friends and family. Browse through their wide range and begin your journey with Enterprise Rent-A-Car.

You can decide from a wide range of vehicles that incorporate economy, SUVs, and people carriers.

Their service is ideal for individuals planning a road trip across the city or even the country or even when relocating and you want to save yourself time and away from stress. You can also browse different models of vehicles in other car hire locations in the UK

Avis

Landing at Inverness Airport and you’re just a 15-minute drive away from the city’s center. Enjoy the numerous attractions Inverness has to offer and then set off in your Avis hire car to traverse the climactic Highland landscape.

As a starting point for Scotland’s most arresting regions of natural beauty, Inverness is arduous to beat. From the so-called capital of the Highlands, you can easily drive and reach Loch Ness, the Cairngorms, and Ben Nevis.

Sixt

A free SIXT shuttle will take you to the collection point in the short stay car park. The SIXT staff will even meet you at Arrivals to assist you to the shuttle while helping you with your luggage. 

Alternatively, you can take a walk to the collection point, following the tracks on the marked route. The car hire return point is rather different. You will need to drive your car to the Dalcross Industrial Estate, alongside the airport, and look for the orange SIXT signage. From there, the free SIXT shuttle bus will drive you straight to Departures.

From low-priced economy cars for driving around the city to larger premium vehicles, SIXT provides a wide selection of high-quality vehicle types on offer at the airport.

With Inverness situated deep in the stunning Scottish Highlands, one of the company’s rugged 4x4s is a great choice to enable you to enjoy your mountain drives. If you are traveling in a group with luggage from the airport, you could arrange for a minibus to ensure that you’ll have enough space.

It is always possible to book for additional drivers, as well as a sat nav to help you steer the entire region. 

Budget

Budget’s cheap car rentals at Inverness Airport provide the best hire cars and present friendly service at an awesome value price.

Traverse the bright lights of Inverness before leaving on an epic road trip across the climactic landscapes of the Highlands. From lovely villages to breathtaking natural wonders, to the intriguing Loch Ness monster, in a Budget hire car you’ll surely have the flexibility to explore more.

Simply put the dates in the booking form to receive a quote in seconds. Once you land at Inverness Airport, take a short walk to the rental counters placed inside the terminal building, where their team will be waiting to hand over the keys.

Hertz

Hire a car from Inverness Airport to explore the capital of the Scottish Highlands, a city whose name interprets to the ‘Mouth of the River Ness’.

The airport is located just 15 minutes from the heart of Inverness, beside Moray Firth. This city is perceived as the Gateway to the Highlands, making it the excellent starting point for a road trip in Scotland.

There’s a wide assortment of cars that you can choose from. The 4x4s are perfectly built for exploring the wonderful Scottish wilds, hatchbacks which make it easy for the entire family to observe magnificent scenery in comfort, and much more.

You can collect your hire car from Inverness Airport and, as well as touring the city. You can also explore the northeast coastline, then proceed to Aberdeen, and pass through Cairngorms National Park.

Book your car hire at Inverness Airport with Hertz online to start the Scottish experience of your dreams today.

Europcar

The station can be found within the terminal building at the airport. You can locate the counter at the bottom of the terminal adjacent to the cafe and opposite the check-in desks. 

After you land at Inverness Airport, walk to the end of the terminal and meet one of their agents to collect your vehicle. To return the vehicle, drive into the airport grounds until you arrive at the mini-roundabout. 

Situated on your right, passing the third exit, you will see a car park with signage saying “Car Rental Returns.” Drive up until you reach the barrier and enter the pin code 0008 then park your car in any Europcar space. The return cabin is located next to the entrance where one of their friendly check-in agents will be able to help you with the return of your vehicle.

Documents Needed When Hiring a Car in Inverness Airport (INV)

When you rent a car, you are required to provide the following documents:

  • A comprehensive driving license. (UK clients must incorporate the printed approval record or the code acquired from the DVLA website here for all designated drivers, complete with details of all endorsements.) Driving licenses with non-Roman Alphabet such as Arabic, Japanese, Cyrillic, etc, must be backed by an International driving license.
  • ID with photos such as passport, ID card, and driving license.
  • Another ID that ensures your address, e.g. utility bill or bank statement.

Things to Remember When Renting a Car in Inverness Airport

Inverness is a growing destination with several things to see and do. When you arrive at Inverness Airport (INV), you can spare time and get on the road quickly by renting a car.

You can go around by public transportation, but consider hiring a car at Inverness Airport. It’s helpful and it saves time. If you go straight to the rental car office after you arrive at Inverness Airport, you can make it to the front of the line and avoid waiting behind other eager travelers.

Plus, renting a car provides you the freedom to drive to a nearby city or attraction outside of Inverness. And with a rental car, setting a place to stay outside of Inverness is an advantage and most likely costs less.

You can rent economical and standard cars, sporty convertibles, family-friendly minivans, and roomy SUVs.

What you need to know when renting a car at Inverness Airport

  • You can ride the shuttle from Inverness Airport to a rental car lot nearby.
  • Make sure you analyze different deals across all major rental car brands. There are lots to choose from at Inverness Airport.
  • Major rental car providers incorporate Hertz, Enterprise, Europcar, and Avis, but Inverness Airport also offers smaller rental car brands.
  • Reserve early to receive the best-priced rental car at Inverness Airport.

Tips for Renting a Car at Inverness Airport (INV)

  • After you arrive, go straight to the car rental office to avoid long lines.
  • Inquire about discounts for AARP. AAA, military, or corporate. When flying to Inverness, verify with the airline for reward details that incorporate discounts at car rental companies.

FAQs

At what age are you allowed to hire a vehicle in Inverness?

You must be at least 21 years old to be able to hire a car at Inverness Airport. But with vans and for some larger vehicles, the minimum age requirement is generally 25.

Do I need to purchase insurance when hiring a car in Inverness?

It’s not required, but it would be ideal to buy one. Your car hire provider will usually offer you a car hire excess insurance policy when you receive your car in Inverness. However, you’ll surely find a better deal by checking out a third-party policy in advance.

Can I use a debit card when hiring a car in Inverness?

Although there are several car hire providers who insist on a credit card for payment, many accept debit cards and you’ll almost surely find one in Inverness that does. If you book online and pay in advance with your debit card, then this will be taken care of.

Is it more affordable to rent a car at the airport or off-site in Inverness?

Sometimes it’s more affordable to rent a car off-site, since picking up your car at the airport is most beneficial. Car rental outlets that are not located inside the Inverness Airport are around eight miles away or at least half an hour by bus.

Can I rent a car in Inverness and return it to another city?

Yes, several car hire providers permit one-way rentals. It’s usually more costly to do this, but it is possible, so it’s still worth looking for deals.

Can you rent a car then collect it on the same day in Inverness?

Yes, this is usually the most reliable way to receive a cheap deal – or try your luck at a car rental desk.

Final Thoughts

Car hire is as vital as your spirit of adventure and a strong pair of shoes as you enter the gateway of the Scottish Highlands.

Right up north (and then a bit further still), where the River Ness joins the Moray Firth and the Great Glen parts through Scotland, lies Inverness. It is famed for the easy path it extends to the wild magnificence of the Highlands.

But before you race off into the wilderness with your car, examine Inverness Museum and Art Gallery. Here, you will discover Scottish history and the bonds between Inverness and the rest of the world.

Also at the center of the town are the Ness Islands, opposite Bught Park. These natural glamour spots are habitat to wildlife, including deer, plus a children’s play area and a miniature railway. In the most northern part of Britain, you’ll find the Cathedral of St Andrew that provides another magnificent sight. And don’t forget to scan in the Victorian Market and snap Inverness Castle.

Countless delightful days can be experienced by solely traversing this city, but to thoroughly discover both Inverness and its neighboring area, a hire car is essential.