Can you Use a Roof Box on a Rental Car? What You Need to Check First

If you want to go on a trip or vacation with your family with a renting car, you will need a roof cargo box to get enough space to carry all of your stuff. With a roof box, you will be able to get enough space for everyone to give them a ride with comfort.

With a rooftop cargo box, you will be able to fit more people inside the car. And carrying your luggage or other stuff becomes much more convenient. If you want to use a roof cargo box with a renting car to get enough space for your stuff then, before renting the vehicle, you’ll need to check the rules and restrictions of the renting company. Every renting company has its own set of rules and regulations about the use of a roof box on the vehicle.

Some Basic Considerations

Before planning for the trip, you should decide if you want to buy a roof cargo box or you want to lease one. Some car rental companies offer different necessary gear with the car such as child car seats, bicycle racks, and some of them even provide roof boxes. But finding a car rental that rents roof cargo boxes is not as easy as finding a car rental that rents bicycle racks because renting a bicycle rack is common with car leasing companies.

There are two considerations to think about, and they are:

car top carrier rental

Will the leasing company allow you to put a cargo carrier on the roof of the vehicle, whether the carrier belongs to you or not?

Before you buy a roof cargo box for your trip, firstly, you should check the guide of that car rental about the rules and restrictions to know that if they allow roof boxes and secondly, if they provide roof cargo boxes with their car so that you don’t have to buy one.

If the car rental does not allow the roof boxes to mount it on the roof of their vehicle, then buying a roof cargo box will be nothing but a wastage of money.

Does the company lease these Roof Box at all or do you have to bring your own?

If the car leasing companies have rooftop boxes that they will lease to you and you will not need a roof box in the future then renting the roof box will be better for you instead of buying one. It is a cheaper and much convenient option for you.

If you lease a roof cargo box with your car, then you have to pay a little amount of money for that. Moreover, they will install the roof box by themselves so that you don’t have to take any hassle.

Each Car Leasing Company Is Different

If you want to go on snowboarding, skiing or fishing trip, it is better to have a roof cargo box. Because a roof box can make the transportation of your gear more convenient. Whether you want to lease a roof box or buy one to use that for your future trips, it is very important that you first check with the rental company so that you can learn their policy about leasing their vehicles and installing rooftop cargo boxes on the roof of their car.

There are different types of renting companies out there. So it will be better for you to contact more than one leasing company because each of them has its own rules and restrictions. Some of them provide you with a child car seat, and bike rack but not with a roof cargo box, some of them provide you with all of them and some of them do not provide any of these gear at all.

roof top carrier rental

You will do not want to buy a roof cargo box and then find out that the leasing company you are going to lease a car from does not allow you to install a roof box on the roof of their vehicle.

To get enough information about a roof cargo box, you can check that online. You can get it through the companies’ websites. So checking online is the first and easy thing that you should do if you want a perfect roof box for the car you are going to rent. 

Sometimes, the bigger companies may not allow you to install a roof cargo box on their car while some smaller companies allow you to do that. So make sure which company allows a roof cargo box. Moreover, you can check that just in two minutes via a quick email or phone call, and this will save you from falling into a problem when you go to rent a car.

While renting a car, ask specific questions to the renting company. Tell them that you need a roof cargo box, and also ask them about their policy about roof boxes, rental vehicles, and rental cost.

Allowing Carriers in Certain Circumstances

If the car renting company allows you to use a roof cargo box or they provide you with one to use it with their rental vehicle, they may have some rules and restrictions that you have to follow. They surely do not allow every type of roof boxes. They will allow the soft-type roof boxes so that the box could not harm their rental vehicles.

Sometimes the renting company may allow you only to use a roof cargo box that can be installed on a roof rack so that their rental car does not get scratched or damaged. Moreover, some of the companies may allow a certain amount of weight of a roof box so that their rental vehicle does not get weighed down too much.

If the car renting company can provide you to rent a roof cargo box from them the renting process will not change, it will remain the same as the renting process of the car from them. And if unfortunately anything terrible happens or any damages occur to the vehicle or the roof box during the trip you will be responsible for that, even if you were away from those, the rule does not change. Because, according to the rules, the liability of any damage will always fall on the customer’s shoulders.

Sometimes the car renting company may not allow you to use a hard type roof cargo box. Because they do not have any roof rack installed on the roof of their car and hard shell roof boxes can scratch or damage the car. But hard shell roof boxes are more massive than the soft type roof boxes. So the car renting company may not allow hard shell roof boxes because of their heavyweight. So if you want to take rent a car, then you have to abide by these type of rules from the company.

A Few More Considerations

roof top carrier rental

If the car renting company will allow the roof cargo box that you want to take with you on the next trip, then you have to confirm about it. There are many kinds of roof boxes and roof racks on the market. So which type of the roof boxes the car leasing company will allow is entirely up to them.

Most of the time the car renting company does not allow a roof cargo box because they do not want to damage their rental cars or they do not wish to have any hassle with the customers about the liability of any danger caused to the renting roof box.

So if you need a roof cargo box during your next vacation with a rental car, it will be better for you to lease the roof box from the same car leasing company. And make sure that they allow the type of roof box that you want.

-Our editorial board has reviewed this article and has been approved for publication according to our editorial policy.

Best Seller Rooftop Cargo Boxes:

SaleBestseller No. 1
SportRack Vista XL Rear Opening Cargo Box
  • 18 cubic foot (510 L) internal cargo capacity
  • Made from durable UV-resistant ABS material
  • Rear opening for easy access away from traffic
  • Tool-free mounting hardware for easy installation and removal
  • Includes key and lock to secure contents in the box, and the box to your rack
Bestseller No. 2
Thule Pulse Rooftop Cargo Box, Medium
  • Functional rooftop cargo box provides 14 cubic feet of additional packing space
  • Rugged and durable design keep contents protected
  • FastGrip quick-mount system assembles in minutes
  • Passenger-side opening for easy loading and unloading
  • Central Locking system provides maximum safety
Bestseller No. 3
JEGS Rooftop Cargo Carrier for Car Storage - Large Roof Rack Cargo Carrier - Heavy Duty Waterproof...
  • Secure & protect your gear in this 18 cubic ft. HDPE plastic hard shell vehicle cargo carrier; high-capacity interior dimensions 57 L x 38 1/2 W x 17 3/4 H inches; aerodynamic design for fuel efficiency
  • Waterproof storage for your luggage with a four corner locking system, front latch, and weather-tight seal for ultimate car rooftop protection and security
  • Easy & convenient loading and unloading from either side of the car make for smooth travel and hassle-free storage
  • No tools required, easy assembly and installation. All mounting hardware and simple instructions are included to get you safely on the road quickly
  • Made in USA, limited lifetime guarantee. The JEGS car top carrier’s high-quality construction and performance give you peace of mind
SaleBestseller No. 4
Rooftop Cargo Carrier, 26 Cubic Feet Soft-Shell Waterproof Car Roof Luggage Bag for All Vehicles SUV...
  • 🚗26 CUBIC FEET LARGE CAPACITY: Massive 26 cubic feet (53L''*43W''*20H'') of space can easily hold all luggage of a family of 5-6, carrying all your needs and saving more inside vehicle space for a more comfortable road trip.
  • 🚗SAFETY COMES FIRST: Three reinforced adjustable straps to keep the cargo carrier more secure firmly. Come with bonus combination lock, it will not only prevent the zippers from slipping, but also adds security to luggage. Wrapping the belt and fixing it with velcro, say goodbye to straps flapping in the wind while you're driving down the road. Even thoughtful logo design of the outermost extension of the zipper cloth has reflective strips, escort for your night journey.
  • 🚗UPGRADED WATERPROOF ZIP: We notice that the straps of other cargo bags can easily rip from the seam, so the MCBD roof bag doubly reinforced the strap seam. And all seams of this cargo bag are heat welded and stitched to ensure they are watertight. 100% Waterproof, waterproof zipper with 6 inches extra wide velcro zipper flaps. It provides perfect weather protection even in extreme conditions such as wind, sun, rain, snow, and sand.
  • 🚗FIT ALL CARS: Our luggage carrier for a car rooftop is suitable for any car, truck, or SUV with Side Rails/Cross Bars/No-rack Roof/Basket. In addition, the equipped anti-slip mat and 6 Door Hooks are Suitable. The door hook with rubber on one side protects your car side from scratches and damage.
  • 🚗100% Refund or Replacement: All of our rooftop cargo carriers have a 1-YEAR WARRANTY and we provide professional customer service. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions. Try it. It's no risk!
Bestseller No. 5
Heavy Duty Hard Shell Roof Top Mount Car Storage Travel Luggage Box Cargo Carrier with Security...
  • ▶️ This roof top storage box is universal fit for mounting to max 13 inches wide cross bar, please check the dimension before purchase.
  • ▶️ The package comes with [1] 53 inches length storage box, [2] security lock key, and [4] heavy duty tool free installation mounting brackets.
  • ▶️ It is constructed of rugged, impact-resistant ABS material to ensure a long lasting life in outdoor conditions. More, it can open from the side and stay open till you close it with the strong support arm.
  • ▶️ Opens on the passenger side to 14 inches wide to store bulky items from the side and stays open till you close it, and it is very easy to install without any tool required to assembly.
  • ▶️ Overall Dimensions: 53" L x 34" W x 15" H | Capacity: 11 Cubic Feet and up to 110 LBS
Bestseller No. 6
SportRack Horizon Cargo Box (Alpine, 11 Cubic Feet)
308 Reviews
SportRack Horizon Cargo Box (Alpine, 11 Cubic Feet)
  • 11 cubic foot (311 L) cargo capacity
  • Made from rugged, impact resistant ABS material
  • Narrow and long profile is ideal for skis/snowboards and leaves room on your roof rack to mount other accessories
  • Passenger side opening for easy loading and unloading away from traffic
  • Easy to install or remove using the quick release attachment kit
Bestseller No. 7
Thule Force XT Rooftop Cargo Box, Sport
  • A versatile roof-mounted cargo box for everyday use
  • Narrow design leaves space for other gear such as bikes, kayaks, skis, and more while providing 11 cubic feet of additional packing space
  • Designed to fit a wide range of vehicles; works with most factory and aftermarket roof racks
  • Quick and tool-free PowerClick mounting system "clicks" when roof box is secure and properly mounted - takes less than 5 minutes to install
  • Dual-side opening for easy access to all areas of the box, from either side of the vehicle
Bestseller No. 8
Thule Sidekick Rooftop Cargo Box Grey, One Size
  • Compact roofbox, ideal for small loads such as camping gear or golf clubs
  • Sturdy U-bolts with reinforcement plates and adjustable brackets provide a secure fit to rack
  • Compact design leaves room for other roof mounted accessories
  • Passenger side opening for easier loading and unloading
  • External Dimensions: 54 x 25 x 15.5 in
Bestseller No. 9
Thule Motion XT Rooftop Cargo Carrier, XXL
  • Oversized roof-mounted cargo box provides 22 cubic feet of additional packing space
  • Designed for optimal space efficiency, aerodynamics, and vehicle fit
  • Quick-mount system "clicks" when roof box is secure and properly mounted
  • Dual-side opening for quick access from either side of the car
  • Easy to open and close with grip-friendly handles and supporting lid-lifters
Bestseller No. 10
TUFFIOM 14.85 Cubic Feet Rooftop Cargo Box w/ Keys, Hard Shell Waterproof Travel Roof Storage Cargo...
2 Reviews
TUFFIOM 14.85 Cubic Feet Rooftop Cargo Box w/ Keys, Hard Shell Waterproof Travel Roof Storage Cargo...
  • DUAL-SIDE OPENING FOR EASY ACCESS: Dual-side opening design allows you to open it from either the driver side or the passenger side, which brings more convenience for loading and unloading.
  • FAIR CAPACITY: With 14.85 cubic feet maximum storage capacity and 150lbs loading capacity, the roof cargo carrier can allow for more space in your car. What’s more, its streamlined design will reduce drag and noise during driving.
  • LOCKING SYSTEM FOR SAFETY: It is designed with locks on both sides and comes with keys for protecting your valuables. And the stiffeners at the bottom of the roof cargo box strengthen its stability.
  • EASY TO INSTALL: It is simple in structure and light in weight (approximately 24.25lbs). It won’t be difficult for you to lift it and install it to your car. And it can work with most vehicles with crossbars, such as car, suv, van, etc.
  • QUALITY MATERIAL FOR DURABILITY & BETTER PROTECTION: Made from ABS material for long-lasting use. And it can protect your luggage or equipment from being exposed to sun, rain or dust. And it is protected with 3-Year Warranty. Any problem, please feel free to contact us.

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Last Update : 2022-05-22