If you want to drive around the island of Martha’s Vineyard, you’ve got three options. One: take your car by ferry boat. Two: rent a car when you get there. Three: borrow a friend’s cars who lives on Martha’s Vineyard and has one already there. People do that. They park cars to have on hand. Vineyard residents cross the channel to the mainland to buy groceries because they are cheaper off the island. You’ll see them when you take the ferry. Don’t be surprised to see a tiny little Volkswagen stuffed from the floorboard to the ceiling with shopping bags

Some days the ferry operator Steamship Authority will sell out motor vehicle reservation tickets. You cannot put your car on the island without a ferry ticket to get it on there.

There is UBER and others. There are taxis too. Bikes and scooters are aplenty. You can’t walk the whole island easily. It is too big for that! So if you are taking your car, buy your ferry ticket for the auto asap. Beat the July and August busy season. Never wait until the last minute on something like this.

We asked an island resident on a busy August day what is it like when all the tourists and visitors are gone. She said, it is dead so we all start having affairs with each other’s spouses. HA! She was serious.

Rental cars on the island can be picked up at the airport and near the ferry terminals in Edgartown and Vineyard Haven.

Rental Car Prices and Hotel Room Rates on Martha’s Vineyard. click

shop rental car companies

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 Tiny cheap rental cars start at $90 plus fees while puts the day rate over $100. A jeep is $239 plus fees.  Taxes hover around 12%. Insurance riders range from $10-$30.   An SUV sized vehicles is $214 per day plus fees.  A mid-sized car is $180.  

These were the 2018 prices.

The island has independent rental car operators. Many of the major car rental company brands such as Hertz and Thrifty but not Enterprise is there.  There is virtually no price difference between the majors and the one or two independent car renters there. Martha’s Vineyard Airport, Oaks Bluff and Edgar Town are the only places we know that offer rental cars.

At $140 per vehicle, round trip, it will be cheaper to take your car by ferry and it is really convenient to drive your own.   But, if you can’t take your car you’ll be paying a day rate of about $15 to park it in Falmouth while on the island.

Then you gotta buy yourself and your kids a ferry ticket too. The adult rate is $17 round trip for adults. Discounts for kids are available.