I want to rent a car in Europe and one of the requirement is to have credit card where they will block some deposit. It's higlighted that it should be credit card not debit.

I have only debit card and I have enough money to make deposit on my debit card.

So my question is, what is the difference between credit and debit card? Why can't I make deposit with my debit card when I have enough money to do it?

PS: I have my name on my debit card, and they are in convex letter - visually there is no diff from credit card except name "debit".

1 Answer 1


Usually rental companies have special rules for customers paying with a debit card, you should check. It is unlikely (although not impossible) that your rental company doesn't allow debit cards at all.

The difference is that preauthorization (what you call "deposit") is meaningless for debit cards. If by the time you return (or not...) the car your account doesn't have the money to cover the costs and damage - the rental company can't charge you. So those companies that do allow debit cards wouldn't just make a preauthorization, they'll take an actual deposit (i.e.: withdraw money from your account). Often for pretty large amounts (to cover the whole cost of rental + potential incidentals like an insurance deductible). You may also be charged higher rate (for example, forcing you to buy insurance you'd otherwise wouldn't need).

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