The Pros and Cons of Kyte Car Rental

Kyte offers convenient car rentals with competitive rates but in few markets. Double check the app for extra fees.
Jennifer Coates
By Jennifer Coates
Edited by Meg Lee

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For some travelers, a trip may require the use of road transportation, such as a rental car. Unfortunately for travelers, car rental costs have ballooned since the onset of the pandemic.

Tech companies, like Kyte car rental, are offering cost-conscious car rental alternatives that offer a wholly different experience than traditional rental companies.

What is Kyte car rental?

Kyte lets you rent a car online or through its smartphone app.

You can choose from a range of vehicle classes, including economy, sedans, SUVs and premium cars like an Audi Q3 or similar. Unlike peer-to-peer alternatives that pitch themselves as 'Airbnb for cars,' Kyte owns its entire fleet of vehicles. It is professionally maintained so you know what you’re getting.

Currently, Kyte’s service area serves 12 major cities, with a majority of them located in the New England region and the West Coast. It also serves the Chicago, Atlanta and Denver markets.

Pros: Where Kyte car rental has an edge

The Kyte car rental service ensures you have access to maximum convenience. Here are a few ways Kyte makes renting a car easier.

Reasonable daily pricing

Kyte’s daily car rental rates are great for those who are budget-minded. For example, when reserving a mid-size car in Los Angeles for pick-up and return at a Kyte lot, the weekly total was $245.20 including taxes.

This was also using your own liability insurance coverage, rather than one provided by Kyte for a fee.

Delivery option

You can choose to have a Kyte Surfer deliver and pick up your car rental at your preferred location. This saves you from the hassle of long lines to pick up your reserved car so you can move along on your journey efficiently and smoothly.

Keep in mind that this convenience costs you $16 for drop off and another $16 for pick up. You can avoid the delivery and pick up fees by getting the car and returning it at a designated Kyte lot.

You can easily make changes to your reservation

Up to 48 hours before your planned delivery, you can shorten your rental timeline and get a full refund for the unused days. If you shorten your trip in less than 48 hours before delivery, you’ll get Kyte credit.

Similarly, you’re free to extend your car rental reservation easily through the app. Changes are based on availability and at the current daily rate of the request. In either situation, ensure that you make these changes at least two hours before a scheduled time or a $25 rescheduling fee might apply.

Pet-friendly fleet

Your fur-buddy can join you in your Kyte rental car, which is a great perk if you’d like to bring them with you on your next road trip. Make sure to clean up after your pet before returning the car, since excessive pet hair might incur a $100 cleaning fee.

Cons: Where Kyte rental can improve

Although Kyte’s car rental experience is designed to have the least friction possible, there are a few downsides to consider.

Restricted to driving within the continental U.S.

Regardless of which state you got your Kyte rental, you’re not allowed to drive Kyte’s vehicle across the Canadian or Mexican borders. If the car is detained in either of these restricted countries, you'll be responsible for any cost of retrieving the car.

Limited market

Kyte car rental operates in many busy metropolitan U.S. cities, but it still only covers a relatively limited service compared to traditional car rental companies. For example, it doesn’t have locations in Texas or other rural areas of the country.

Various fees might apply

Kyte car rentals can be returned in a different market than your original delivery area. For example, you can choose to get your rental car in Los Angeles, and return it in Seattle.

However, this arrangement might result in a one-way fee. Additionally, if you keep a Kyte Surfer (who arranges drop off or pick up) waiting more than 10 minutes (up to 30 minutes), you’ll be charged a $10 late fee.

Debit card deposits are higher

If you use a debit card to place your deposit for a non-premium vehicle, a $500 hold is placed on your debit card. This is $200 higher than the $300 deposit that’s required when using a credit card.

Other things to note about Kyte car rentals

  • Punctuality matters. If you’ve chosen delivery, a Kyte Surfer will arrive 15 minutes before or after your scheduled time. They’ll stick around for 10 minutes upon arrival. However, there’s no guarantee they can wait longer than If you keep them waiting for 11 to 30 minutes, you’ll incur a late fee. If you’re late beyond this, a $25 rescheduling fee applies.

  • Consider tipping if you opt for delivery service. Tipping your Kyte Surfer isn’t required, upon delivery or pick up. However, if you'd like to tip your Surfer, budget for this cost in advance. You can do so in the Trip section of your Kyte app; just click on “Rate & Tip.”

  • Budget for gasoline. Like a traditional car rental, you can either return the car with the same amount of gas that it came with or return it without filling up. If opting for the latter, Kyte will charge your card for gas, based on the current rate.

Is Kyte Car Rental worth it?

If you’re traveling to and from a Kyte car rental service area, this app-based option is worth looking into. Kyte offers competitive daily rates for its professionally-managed fleet of cars, and provides a level of convenience that busy travelers will appreciate.

Just make sure you thoroughly read the rental agreement which is found in your Kyte app so you’re informed of all potential fees and requirements.

How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are some of the best travel credit cards of 2024:

Cards for Rental Cars from our Partners
Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card

on Chase's website

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
NerdWallet Rating
Rewards rate


5x on travel purchased through Chase Travel℠, 3x on dining, select streaming services and online groceries, 2x on all other travel purchases, 1x on all other purchases.


Intro offer


Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Travel℠.

Chase Sapphire Reserve Credit Card

on Chase's website

Chase Sapphire Reserve®
NerdWallet Rating
Rewards rate


Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Travel℠ immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.


Intro offer


Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Travel℠.

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card

on Capital One's website

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card
NerdWallet Rating
Rewards rate


Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel, Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases.


Intro offer


Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel.

See more cards for rental cars
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