How to Smoke in a Rental Car Without it Smelling

Smoking has become a daily life habit ingrained into the minds of a large percentage of people in the United States and across every other country of the world. They go to the extent of smoking when and where they should not.

Most rented car companies shun the act of smoking in their cars but it is then that you will see some people asking 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

Can I Smoke in a Rental Car?

No, you are not expected to smoke in a rental car because 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, Europe, 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, they may not have a smoke detector in the car to detect the smoke but they will definitely find out and you will be charged additional cleaning fees.

You will also be responsible for whatever damages the smoke may have caused to the interior functions or furnishes of the car, such as burns on the leather or any other damages.

How to Smoke in a Rental Car Without it Smelling

To smoke in a rental car without it smelling:

1. Ensure the Windows is 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 smells.

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.

Also, doing this can prevent the burn from the smoke from touching the interior of the car and burning it or causing one damage or the other to the car seat.

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, 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.

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. They will charge you more.

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?

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

No rental car companies in the U.S., and Europe will allow smoking in their 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.

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 a smoke smell out of your car can take between 48 hours to 72 hours.

If you smoked in your car for a long time consistently, with all the windows closed, without any preventive measures, without cleaning up after, 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 rented 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.