How to Smoke in a Rental Car Without it Smelling? (Explained)

How to Smoke in a Rental Car Without it Smelling

To smoke in a rental car without it smelling,

  • Ensure the car windows are wide open
  • Put the cigarette out of the car while you smoke
  • Puff the smoke out of the window
  • Use coffee grounds to soak up the smell, and
  • Ensure to clean the car afterward to eliminate traces of smoke smell in the car

Smoking has become a daily life habit ingrained into the minds of a large percentage of people in the United States, and across every country in the world.

Irrespective of the religion, tribe, culture, weather conditions, or geographical location, you will always find a smoker in every part of the world. Also, some countries, cultures, traditions, and religions are more accepting of the smoking habit than others.

Some of them forthrightly condemn the habit of smoking, so much that some countries have banned smoke, or placed huge taxes on them to deter people from smoking, as a result of their beliefs.

However, smoking in the US, and all other countries in Europe is considered a normal habit. Some studies even argue that there are more smokers than there are non-smokers. Some say that one-third of the United States population smoke, and the major reason smokers give for their smoking habit is the cold weather, how that smoking helps keep the insides warm.

What then can you do as a renter that smokes? Smoking in a rented car leaves bad smoke smells in the car, and then that makes for bad reviews for the next driver, as some of the smoke smell doesn’t entirely come off, no matter the number of air fresheners that are used. There are often residues left for the next renter of the car.

This is why many car rental outlets advise and entreat renters not to smoke in the car, or even drink alcohol like that, when spilled in the car, can also generate bad, lingering smells on the leather and rugs of the car.

Can I Smoke in a Rental Car?

No, you are not supposed to smoke in a rental car. Car rental companies do not allow renters to smoke in their cars, and they have written up a policy to this effect.

Companies that rent out cars to drivers everywhere in North America, across Europe, in the United States, and Canada are staunch on their no-smoking – or smoke-free cars – policy.

Rental companies charge an amount to clean up the car and purge the car of the smell of smoke after inspecting the car upon return and realizing that the renter has smoked in the car, flouting the no-smoking policy.

If you smoke in a rented car, you will be charged additional cleaning fees, and will also be responsible for whatever damages the smoke causes to the interior functions or furnishes of the car, such as burns on the leather from the fire of the smoke, and any other damages that might occur as a result of smoking.

Therefore, you should not smoke in a rental car while driving the rented car out of state.

Why Can’t I Smoke in a Rental Car?

In order not to be liable for damages that smoking in a rental car will cause, it is advisable not to smoke in a rental car.

Also, smoking in a rental car attracts extra fees if the rental car outlet discovers, after examination of the car upon return, that you have smoked in the car.

The rental outlet can discover this from the smell of the car, and also the residue of ashes from your cigarette all over the interior of the car.

However, why won’t all these rental cars smell the same when they mostly make use of the same cleaning products and car air freshener to ensure they put out the smoke smell left in the car.

How to Smoke in a Rental Car Without it Smelling

Although hirers are supposed to follow the no-smoking rule of the car rental company they hire a car from, many don’t, and at the end of the day, they leave the car smelly.

As a hirer, if you want to smoke in a rental car, there are several ways to do that without leaving the smell of smoke in the car.

To smoke in a rental car without it smelling:

1. Ensure the Windows are Widely Open

If you want to smoke in a rented car, it is wise to leave the window closest to you open, to let the smoke ooze out directly through the open window.

If all the windows of the rented car are closed, there would be no way for the smoke to escape from the car, and when smoke doesn’t escape, it will form an intoxicating stench that would be too hard to miss.

Leave the windows open to let the smoke escape from the car alongside its smell and also let fresh air and the cool breeze do proper justice to whatever residue smell.

2. Put the Cigarette Out of the Car

Along with leaving the windows open, make sure the hand you are holding the cigarette in is just out of the car, by the exterior door. This way, the smoke from the cigarette won’t have a chance to get into the car in the first place.

3. Puff the Smoke Out of the Window

Ensure that if you are puffing smoke, do not puff it inside the car. Puff the smoke from the cigarette out of the car so it can go with the wind and not get stuck in the car.

4. Use Coffee Grounds

Coffee is known to soak up smell, and so some people use a bowl of coffee grounds inside the rented car, putting it on the floor of the car, or the dashboard of the car to soak up the smell of smoke that has gotten into the car as a result of the cigarette.

5. Clean and Wipe After Smoke

Do the due diligence to clean the car after smoking. You should wipe off the ashes from the cigarette that must have fallen on the seats of the car, and different parts of the car interior. You can use dryer sheets to clean. It helps to get off the stains and smell of the smoke.

What Rental Car Company Allows You to Smoke in their Car?

Hertz Rental Company is the only major car rental company that still allows smoking in its rental cars.

Many major rental companies are putting out policies, formally banning smoking in their rental cars.

Budget and Avis Rental Cars were the forerunners of this movement, followed by rental companies like Dollar Rent, Thrifty Car Rentals, Alamo Rentals, National, and many major rental companies.

The only major company that hasn’t followed suit is Hertz Rental Company, and there are speculations that they would likely inculcate the no-smoking rule in their company as well.

How Long Does it Take to Get Smoke Smell out of Car?

Depending on the steps you take and also the way you smoked in your car, getting smoke smell out of your car can take between fifteen minutes and seventy-two hours.

If you smoked in your car for a long time consistently, with all the windows closed, without any preventive measure, without cleaning up after you, and with total negligence, it can take between two weeks to one month for you to get the stench out.


Many car renters have complained of their rental cars smelling of a cigarette without smoking in it. If you find that your rented car has a funny smell, and you are not responsible for it, if it is something you can dry out for a while to get the stench off, do so, otherwise, you can return it to the car rental company.

It is always important and advisable to follow the policies of the car rental company you hired a car from so as not to attract extra fees and even legal procedures taken against you. If you smoke, and there is every likelihood for you to smoke in a rented car, rent the car from a car company that allows smoking in their car.