East Midlands Airport Car Hire

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Compare Car Hire at East Midlands Airport (EMA)

If you need to hire a car at East Midlands Airport (EMA), Enjoy helps you choose from fab brands and models supplied by trusted local and international car rental providers and making arrangements for to pick up your ideal vehicle at this awesome air hub is as simple as a walk in the park.

An international airport in the East Midlands area of England close to Leicestershire’s Castle Donington, EMA is 16km from Loughborough, 20km from Derby, and 23km from Nottingham. According to the latest stats it’s Britain’s 14th-busiest airport, processing 4.66 million passengers annually.

Formerly Castle Donington Airfield, an RAF base decommissioned in 1946, East Midlands Airport was officially opened by the Duke of Edinburgh on April 2nd, 1946 and the first major carrier was British Midland. The runway was extended by 7,480ft in 1970 to accommodate larger planes, a cargo terminal was added in 1973 and by 1984 one million passengers were using EMA. Various extensions and refurbishments followed in subsequent years, including a £10 million redevelopment programme in 2008 featuring a new shopping complex and restaurant.

This is a reasonably small yet perfectly formed airport with a wide range of amenities and facilities to suit visitors of all types. For instance, if you’re looking for a meditative space to gather your thoughts while travelling, the Prayer Room is open 24 hours for prayer, meditation or simply thinking freely in relaxed and serene surroundings ̶ this is a non-denominational space open to people of any faith as well as those who have no beliefs whatsoever.

Another awesome attraction is the Aeropark, an aviation museum where you can wander around parked up passenger and warplanes from the past as well as watching modern jets taking off regularly as EMA goes about its dynamic daily business. There are also two large viewing mounds which offer unparalleled views of the airport ̶ ideal spots for unique selfies to share on your social media! Finally, if you want to shop ‘til you drop at EMA, you can choose from renowned names like Accessorize, Beautifly, JD Sports, WH Smith and World Duty Free, while you can keep hunger at bay and slake your thirst at Burger King, Frankie & Benny’s, Starbucks and several more outlets.

Once you pick up your car at EMA (remember to drive on the left-hand side of the road here and everywhere else in the UK) the nearest towns and cities are clearly signposted and Enjoy works with a superb selection of car hire providers here so it’s easy to choose the ideal make and model to suit your plans and the needs of your travel group. For example, a Peugeot 108 seats four and is petit enough to park with ease in the tightest city centre spots and a compact Ford Focus seats five and might feel a bit sturdier for daytrips in the countryside. Meanwhile, a Ford Kuga SUV is an attractive intermediate-sized vehicle with an elevated driving position that makes some drivers feel more comfortable and in control and a roomy Vauxhall Zafira Tourer seats seven in air-conditioned comfort so it’s ideal for extended families.

Enjoy works with partners like Enterprise, Alamo and Green Motion Car and Van Rental at EMA and quality car rental packages include components like third party liability, theft protection, 24-hour assistance and collision damage waiver. Plus, choosing your car is child’s play ̶ pop your dates and details in our handy online form and you’ll be served with a superb selection of cars in a split second.

Read on for more information on driving in and around EMA and a few fab things to see and do in the area.

Driving in and around East Midlands Airport

Driving signage is fairly straightforward and clear in Britain but you’ll find a free version of the UK Highway Code online and this is always worth studying thoroughly before you take to the roads for the first time. If your vehicle is fitted with a Satnav this can definitely be useful, but you can also tune your radio or phone into BBC Five Live for regular travel and traffic updates.

As stated, you always drive on the left in the UK and the speed limits are as follows: 70 mph (120 km/h) for motorways, 60 mph (100 km/h) on non-motorway main roads and 30 mph (50 km/h) or 20 mph (40 km/h) if you’re in city centre areas or close to buildings such as schools.

While some of the rules of the road will be similar to your home nation others could vary significantly. Here are a few pointers:

  • When you get behind the wheel, carry your passport or photo ID card with you, as well as the vehicle documentation and a valid driver’s licence. All driver’s licenses from EEA nations are recognised in the UK, as are those from most other nations.
  • The driver and all passengers should wear seatbelts and any children too small to use seatbelts should use a car seat or another type of legally-approves system which fits their age and weight.
  • Drink driving is not tolerated in the East Midlands or any other part of the UK. The blood alcohol limit in England, Wales and Northern Ireland is 80 micrograms per 100 ml of breath, but the safest advice is not to drink at all if you’re driving in the UK. The fine for being caught over the drink drive limit can be £5175 but if your actions cause harm then the consequences could be serious and the punishment suitably severe.
  • You’re not allowed to use a mobile phone while driving, unless the system is genuinely hands-free and it doesn’t distract you from your driving.
  • You might find that you’re sharing the road with more cyclists than you’re used to in certain rural areas and towns and cities in the East Midlands. Cyclists are legitimately permitted to use the entire lane of the road in the UK, so please don’t drive aggressively if you’re behind them or overtake if the manoeuvre is hazardous. Cyclists should usually indicate using hand signals, but they won’t do this in busy areas where they need both hands on the handlebars, so take time to decipher their next move and then react accordingly.

A useful guide to the East Midlands for EMA car hire customers

There are plenty of eclectic attractions across the vast area that constitutes the East Midlands so there’s plenty to explore in your car. Here are a couple of highlights

  • If you’re a petrol-head you should definitely make time to visit Donington Park racing circuit where you can see everything from touring car races to superbike competitions. You don’t just have to watch from the stands here though ̶ a range of exciting driving experiences are available, and you might get the are chance to pilot a supercar or some other type of specialist vehicle.
  • Find a designated driver for this excursion, but the National Brewery Centre at Burton Upon Trent is a must-see for beer lovers and as well as a fascinating museum outlining the history of one of the world’s favourite alcoholic tipples, there are vintage vehicles, carts drawn by shire horses and a brilliant beer boutique which stocks almost every brand of beer you can think of from around the world, plus a few we can bet you’ve never heard of. You’ll top off your day with a terrific beer tasting session and head home with a wide smile on your face and suitably rosy cheeks! One note of caution though ̶ please don’t drive even the day after this type of activity as alcohol could still be present in your system.
  • Are you a fan of horrible histories who enjoys ghoulish gatherings? If you’re nodding your head then you’ll absolutely adore Derby Gaol. The old Derby Gaol (the ancient spelling of ‘jail’) is found under numbers 50 and 51 Friargate in the town and was in use between 1756 and 1828. It’s said to be one of Britain’s most haunted spots and as well as historical tours and ghost hunting sessions you can even arrange a sleepover where you spend the night in one of the cells ̶ if you dare try this, you should probably sleep with one eye open!

As you can see, there’s plenty to keep you occupied in the East Midlands and with Enjoy you can find the ideal hire car in a couple of clicks.

Whether you’re flying into EMA for business or pleasure, we ensure EMA car hire is completely hassle-free.

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Online chat help is open 08:30am to 17:00 weekdays. Email: customersupport@enjoycarhire.com

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FAQs about car hire in East Midlands Airport

Most frequently asked questions about hiring a car in East Midlands Airport

14 miles (22.5 km)
Prices start from as low as £15 per day, the average for a mini to economy size car is £25.
Alamo, Keddy, Europcar, Enterprise, Greenmotion and Hertz.
26 min (18.3 mi)