Rent a Car for Travel in Guilin

Guilin is renowned for its breathtaking karst mountain landscapes and lush nature. The city serves as a popular gateway to exploring the beauty of northern Guangxi province. Renting a car gives you the flexibility to discover Guilin’s picturesque sights at your own pace. Here is a guide to renting and driving a car for travel in Guilin.

Finding a Car Rental Company in Guilin

There are many rental car options available in the city. Major companies include:

International Firms

  • Hertz
  • Europcar
  • Avis

Local Companies

  • Guilin Car Rental
  • Trustway Car Rental
  • CNtravel Car Rental

When selecting a provider, consider factors like location, vehicle availability, insurance options, and customer service. Booking in advance online is recommended to get the best rates.

Acquiring a Temporary Chinese Driver’s License

If you plan to drive yourself and only have an overseas license, you’ll need to get a temporary Chinese license in Guilin. Requirements are:

  • Valid foreign driver’s license
  • Passport
  • Proof of temporary Guilin residence

Apply at the Guilin Traffic Police Division with proper documentation. Processing takes around 7 days so apply well ahead of pickup date.

Booking Your Rental Car in Guilin

Reserve your rental car as early as possible online. Provide details like:

  • Pickup and drop off dates/times
  • Pickup and drop off locations
  • Driver’s license information
  • Preferred vehicle type

Booking ahead secures the best rates and availability. Review all rental terms and fees before your trip.

Common Car Rental Vehicle Types in Guilin

Popular rental vehicles in Guilin include:


Ideal for 1-4 passengers. Models offered:

  • Volkswagen Santana
  • Toyota Corolla

Great for getting around the city. Affordable and easy to park.


For 4-7 passengers. Models include:

  • Toyota RAV4
  • Honda CR-V

SUVs provide more space and luggage capacity. Good for longer trips.


For group travelers. Models include:

  • Toyota HiAce
  • Nissan NV200

Minivans fit 7+ people comfortably. Perfect for transfers or families.

Luxury Vehicles

For special occasions. Models include:

  • Audi A6
  • Volvo S90

Luxury rentals offer premier service and amenities. More expensive but exclusive.

Inspecting your Rental Vehicle in Guilin

Do a thorough inspection when you pick up your car:

  • Check for exterior damage
  • Test all lights are functioning
  • Verify tire treads are adequate
  • Confirm fluid levels are filled
  • Ensure the gas tank is full
  • Check A/C, radio, etc. work properly

Note any issues on the contract and point them out. This prevents liability for pre-existing damages later.

Understanding Traffic Rules in Guilin

Some key driving rules in Guilin include:

  • Drive on the right side of the road
  • Seatbelts must be worn by all passengers
  • Children under 4’11” need approved child seats
  • Mobile phone usage is prohibited when driving
  • Obey speed limits which range from 30-80 km/h
  • Running red lights results in fines and license deductions
  • Drunk driving and driving under the influence are illegal

Following the laws will keep you safe and avoid legal problems. Rental cars must follow all regulations.

Finding Parking in Guilin

Parking in Guilin city can be challenging. Options include:

  • On-street parking – Allowed in certain designated spots. Fees apply.
  • Public garages – Found around the city. Hourly, daily and monthly rates.
  • Hotels – Some hotels provide parking, occasionally for a fee.
  • Rental car parking – Ask if rental company offers discounted or free parking.

Avoid illegal parking since fines are costly. Always park in permitted areas.

Useful Driving Tips for Guilin

Follow these tips when driving your rental car in Guilin:

  • Use GPS apps to navigate Guilin’s winding roads
  • Watch for scooters and pedestrians ignoring traffic laws
  • Get an international driver’s permit if you don’t read Chinese
  • Keep rental company’s contact details handy in case of issues
  • Have cash ready for toll roads and parking fees
  • Fill up the gas tank whenever you see a petrol station
  • Practice defensive driving as other drivers can be aggressive

Staying alert and following local driving etiquette will help you safely handle Guilin’s roads.

Top Guilin Attractions to Visit by Car

Having your own wheels makes accessing Guilin’s top attractions simple:

Li River Cruise

Boat trip showcasing stunning karst peaks along the Li River.

Longsheng Rice Terraces

Impressive rice terraces carved into mountainsides.

Seven Star Park

Scenic riverside park with peaks, caves and giant banyan trees.

Reed Flute Cave

Limestone cave with colorful stalactites, stalagmites and rock formations.

Elephant Trunk Hill

Iconic hill looking like an elephant drinking from the Li River.

Daxu Ancient Town

Historic town with ancient architecture, markets and temples.

A rental car allows easy access to see Guilin’s picturesque landscape.

5 Frequently Asked Questions About Renting a Car in Guilin

1. What documents do I need to rent a car in Guilin?

You’ll need a valid driver’s license, passport, and credit card for the rental deposit. International licenses work but Chinese permits are preferred.

2. What side of the road do people drive on in Guilin?

As in mainland China, drivers in Guilin stay on the right-hand side of the road.

3. What if I get into an accident with the rental car?

Contact the police and rental company immediately. File an accident report with your rental agent and notify your travel insurance if injuries/major damage occurred.

4. Are taxes and insurance included in Guilin rental car rates?

Taxes are usually included but verify when booking. Extra insurance for damage/theft is additional per day. Read all rental terms carefully.


Renting a car in Guilin gives you the freedom to fully experience its beautiful scenery and attractions. By booking early, inspecting your vehicle, driving defensively, and using navigation apps, you can avoid issues and safely navigate Guilin’s winding roads. With its Li River cruises, iconic karst mountains, rice terraces and historic towns, having your own transportation lets you make the most of this picturesque destination.


Leave a Comment