Explore Ottawa with a car hire from Airport Rentals
A hub of culture, education, and history, Canada’s capital city Ottawa is a must-visit for any traveller. Much of the nation’s governmental operations happen here and you’d be remiss if you didn’t get a chance to admire the stately Parliament Hill during your visit. You could easily spend weeks exploring the city, and you can also use it as the perfect starting point for discovering nearby destinations such as Montreal, Quebec, and Toronto.
Driving around Ottawa in a rental car is about what you’d expect from a city of one million - busy around rush hours but not too bad on the whole. Keep in mind that there are only so many bridges that cross the Ottawa River, so you can usually expect some congestion around these areas. That said, many of the city’s main attractions can be found within walking distance of one another in the downtown area, so you should be able to find a park and walk to see these sights.
Driving to and from Ottawa Airport
The fastest route between Ottawa Airport and the CBD is via Route 79 N. This trip will take you from the terminal to Airport Parkway, which becomes Bronson Ave and takes you straight into town. Under normal traffic conditions, this trip will take roughly 20 minutes.
Ottawa rental car driving tips
When you’re driving around town in Ottawa, note that there are a number of one-way streets in the downtown area, so it may help to plan your route in advance. If you pop over the bridge into Gatineau, Quebec, you’ll find that most of the street signs are in French. While it may help to learn a few basic words, keep in mind that the road rules are the same.
Should you need to park your car rental at Ottawa Airport, you can choose from the parkade, long term parking, or the cell phone lot. Both the parkade and long term lots are $5 for the first 30 minutes, and the cell phone lot is for waiting for incoming passengers.
Parking in Ottawa
There are a large number of city-operated and private parking lots throughout downtown Ottawa. Should you be there over the weekend, note that city lots and street stalls are free on Saturdays and Sundays.
Book a cheap Ottawa car hire with AirportRentals.com
Airport Rentals can make renting a car in Ottawa the easiest part of planning your trip. This tool makes it possible to compare vehicles from multiple car rental companies on one page - simply enter a few key travel details and hit ‘search’.
The page will automatically present multiple vehicles from leading brands such as Avis, Hertz and Thrifty, and you can narrow down your results with preference filters. Once you’ve made your pick, it’s a simple process to book securely online.
Should you need a hand at any point along the way, Airport Rentals staff are on hand via email and over the phone to answer your questions.
Ottawa Airport sees more than 4.5 million passengers come and go every year, and offers a comfortable experience in the terminal for all those who fly. The facility includes a wide range of shops, restaurants, and services such as currency exchange, baby change tables and free WiFi throughout the airport.
You’ll find the Ottawa Airport car rental desks across from the arrivals on the main level of the parkade.
Keep in mind that you can pick up your car hire at Ottawa Airport and drop it off elsewhere. Nearby rental locations include:
Stay in style, stay near the airport, or even stay in an old jail - Ottawa is not short on accommodation options so you’ll have plenty to choose from during your visit. Keep in mind that somewhere with free parking included in the room rate can help you save on parkade charges for your car hire.
Ottawa is never short of a festival or two, and it loves to celebrate its culture, heritage and scenery. It’s one of the best places in the country to enjoy the Canada Day celebrations on July 1, and its social calendar is packed throughout the year.
As the country’s capital, Ottawa’s culture is defined by its rich history and diverse population. The central areas of the Golden Triangle (a triangle-shaped section of the CBD), the ByWard Market, and Parliament Hill, are filled with museums, art galleries, restaurants, cafes and more, and a stroll through these parts of town will give you a good feel for the city.
Ottawa’s location on the banks of the Ottawa River is also an important part of its identity, as this is where it borders with Gatineau, Quebec. While these two cities are in separate provinces, they work closely together and are jointly known as the National Capital Region. Enjoy a skate on the river and a ‘beaver tail’ for a special snack during winter.
Things to see in Ottawa with your car rental
Ottawa is one of those rare destinations that has a seemingly endless list of things to see and do. Your hired car will help you get around as many of them as possible during the time you have in town.