a car rental place/company, a car hire place/firm, hire/rent

Discussion in 'English Only' started by wolfbm1, Jan 10, 2012.

  1. wolfbm1

    wolfbm1 Senior Member

    Poland
    Polish
    Hello,
    I've got a question.
    If I want to hire a car in the UK, where do I go? To a car hire, a car hire place or a car hire firm?
    If I want to hire a car in the USA, where do I go? To a car rental, a car rental place or a car rental company?

    I understand that in the UK you hire a car and in the USA you rent a car.
     
  2. ribran

    ribran Senior Member

    Austin, Texas
    English - American
    A car rental agency.
     
  3. dukaine Senior Member

    Richmond, VA
    English - American
    I say "rental car place" or "car rental place". You could say any one of the ones you said, though.
     
  4. SwissPete

    SwissPete Senior Member

    94044 USA
    Français (CH), AE (California)
    Definitely a car rental agency in the US.
    I don't know about the UK.
     
  5. Egmont Senior Member

    Massachusetts, U.S.
    English - U.S.
    A car rental agency is the place where a car rental company does business. So, you go to the company, as a business, but you go to the agency, as a physical location.

    If I say "I'm going to Avis to rent a car," it's understood that I intend to go to one of its agencies.
     
  6. MikeLynn

    MikeLynn Senior Member

    Hi everybody, is it common to shorten "car rental agency" to "car rental" in the US? My friends used to say things like a "video rental", so it seems to be logical. However, I'm not sure that it is idiomatic. Thank you for your contributions
    M
     
  7. Egmont Senior Member

    Massachusetts, U.S.
    English - U.S.
    Not in my experience, but it may be a regional usage.
     
  8. wolfbm1

    wolfbm1 Senior Member

    Poland
    Polish
    Thank you, Egmont, for explaining this to me.
    So Avis , Hertz or Europcar are names of car rental companies and they can also mean car rental agencies.
     
  9. MikeLynn

    MikeLynn Senior Member

    Thank you, Egmont for your reply, but I still have some doubts as I've just realized that I saw "car rental" for a "car rental agency" in Vocabulary in Use, ISBN 0-521-57768-3, published by Cambridge a North American English version and I'm not sure that they would include regionalisms in the book although I might be wrong. Any comments are appreciated. Thank you
    M
     
  10. George French Senior Member

    English - UK
    I just go to my local garage to hire a car. If I'm in th UK to a hire car, car hire firm.

    GF..
     
  11. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    A "car hire firm" gets quite a few hits on UK sites when g**gled..
     
  12. wolfbm1

    wolfbm1 Senior Member

    Poland
    Polish
    So it is a hire car or a car hire firm in the UK and a car rental agency in the USA.
    Your local garage (somewhere outside the UK)? It must be cheaper than from Avis. I never knew that local garages provide this service.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2012
  13. GreenWhiteBlue

    GreenWhiteBlue Senior Member

    The City of New York
    USA - English
    Indeed, but note that you would always speak of renting , rather than hiring a car, and not just when referring to the business as a "car rental company." Thus, if you wanted to hire a car in the USA in the sense being discussed here, you would do best by saying that you wanted to rent that car in order to prevent being misunderstood.
    The term "hiring a car" is certainly used in the US, but it does not have the same meaning. In the US "I hired a car" strongly suggests that you were provided not only with a car, but with a chauffeur as well:
    We hired a limousine to take the wedding party to the church, and then afterwards to the reception.
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2012
  14. wolfbm1

    wolfbm1 Senior Member

    Poland
    Polish
    This is a very interesting point. How does one make this distinction in the UK? Does one have to say: I hired a car with a chauffeur? or I hired a car from a chauffeur drive (business)?
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2012
  15. George French Senior Member

    English - UK
    My local garage is in a small village somewhere on the continent. Public transport? When you are out in the stixs that is an unknown concept.

    It is just another way of increasing the cash flow. If you put your car into the garage for repairs then you can also get a replacement car for the day, just like most garages everywhere so hiring out cars etc. is only a natural part of the business. The price seems OK to me... and it a useful service...

    GF..

    The country is a completely different world..... Or should I say cities are a different world?
     
  16. wolfbm1

    wolfbm1 Senior Member

    Poland
    Polish
    I think garage means a small car repair shop. I would expect to get a replacement car from an auto collision repair business because your insurance in a way covers this expense.
    It is interesting that you can hire a car from a car hire (or a car hire firm), and a car hire hires out a car to you.
    (I know that big cities or conurbations are sometimes called jungles. I have never heard about places in the sticks.)
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2012
  17. George French Senior Member

    English - UK
    Sticks see: http://www.wordreference.com/definition/sticks 5 (the sticks) informal, derogatory rural areas. Note that many who live in the sticks also use sticks to differentiate where they live instead of some !**!** town.

    Garage: http://www.wordreference.com/definition/garage an establishment which sells fuel or which repairs and sells motor vehicles.
    But they also do a lot more:-
    • They provide services to me (and its other clients).
    • In rural area you can get most things you will need in the garden that is motorised etc..
    • They sell new and old cars and buy used cars
    • You can rent a car from them
    • They will repair just about anything that has a petrol or diesel motor in it
    • And even more
    GF..

    Of course not all garages provide all the services....

    A lot of people have a (private) garage next to or near their house or on the ground floor of their house where they can lockup their car and keep the rain off it.. Or more likely store the junk in.. That is not the type of garage this thread is about....
     
  18. wolfbm1

    wolfbm1 Senior Member

    Poland
    Polish
    Thank you, George, for the interesting comment.
    Thank you, everyone.
     

Share This Page

Loading...