Any links on this page that lead to products on Amazon are affiliate links and I earn a commission if you make a purchase. Thanks in advance – I really appreciate it!
One of our friends recently rode a horse for the first time and loved it. Now he’s “horse crazy” and asked if he could rent a horse by the day. Renting a horse is an excellent plan for his situation, so I researched horse rentals and compiled the useful information needed to rent a horse.
You can rent a horse by the day from commercial equine facilities or individual owners. Renting a horse is beneficial by giving novice riders a chance to get accustomed to horses, and for prospective buyers, it allows them to try a horse before committing to purchase one.
Many people love horse riding but don’t have the land or expertise needed to own one. Renting a horse for a day has a lot of benefits, and some may not be obvious.
Where can you rent a horse for a day?
The most common daily horse rental is a commercial trail ride. However, equine training facilities that specialize in specific activities like dressage or showjumping and private owners may also rent their horses for a day.
One common thread you will notice when you rent a horse is that you will be required to sign a waiver of liability in a rental agreement before riding the horse.
Trail riding rental
Commercial trail rides are an excellent way for novice riders to get a feel for horseback riding. We lived within walking distance of a great commercial trail riding facility.
And we had plenty of horses, but if out of town guest staying with us wanted to ride a horse, we brought them to the riding facility to rent a well-trained beginner horse.
They had over fifty well-trained horses and a staff of knowledgeable horsemen. The facility also had a campground and rodeo arena that allowed riders to practice safely with their horses.
Trail rides typically cost forty-five dollars and lasted two hours. Most rides traveled a wooded trail and included ten riders and two crew members; one guide led the way, and the other followed from behind the line of horses.
The horses were allowed to gallop and run in designated areas of the trail. Of course, the horses knew the path well, and some would get anxious when you turn for the barn, but overall it was a great experience.
Renting a horse for a commercial trail riding facility is an excellent way for novice riders to become accustomed to riding horses in a controlled environment. Some commercial horse rental facilities allow you to ride their trails without a guide; however, it’s not standard.
If you want to rent a horse, I strongly suggest you contact the company beforehand to find out what their rules are, some don’t allow running, are guided only, some you have to bring your own helmet, and most have weight limits for riders.
Many great locations offer horseback riding rentals. I wrote an article on the best beaches for horseback riding that you may find helpful: 10 Best Beaches for Horseback Riding in the USA.
If beaches aren’t for you, there are sure to be commercial trail rides in an environment to your liking. For example, Colorado offers guided mountain trail riding; you can click this link to read what Colorado offers.
Equine training facility rentals
Most equine training facilities give riding lessons to horse owners and horse lovers that don’t yet own their horse. For those without a horse, the classes include the price of rental for the horse during riding lessons.
Typically students have an option to purchase a monthly plan but can do one-day horse rentals. The monthly plans’ prices are based on the number of lessons a student attends per week and are usually cheaper than one-day rentals.
One of the many advantages of renting from an equine facility is it allows you to try different riding styles. You may have only ever ridden western, so now you can try English riding and dressage or showjumping.
But before you ever take your first ride, most facilities require you to complete a mandatory evaluation ride so they can match you with an appropriate horse.
In our area, the riding lessons’ prices are reasonable and typically run between 50 and 75 dollars per hour. I think it is a bargain and is a great way to learn to ride a horse correctly.
Some training facilities rent horses to individuals that only want to ride for a day without any lessons. There are typically strict guidelines associated with these type of rental. They require you to prove your riding ability and, of course, sign a waiver of liability and rental agreements.
Private owner rentals.
Some private owners will rent their horses to people they know or trust. These rentals typically occur for competition horses or when the owner is trying to sell a horse.
We’ve rented horses from private individuals on a couple of occasions. Once, we were interested in a barrel prospect and wanted to take the horse to our home to ride for a couple of weeks to ensure it was a good fit and sound.
We also rented a horse for a barrel racing competition when our horse was too ill to compete. Both times we provided insurance on the horses and signed a waiver.
But I also know private horse owners who rent their horses to riders to take on trail rides for the day. They don’t advertise this but only rent to people they know or friends of someone they trust.
Most owners with a lot of horses need their animals ridden and are happy to rent out their horses. I have one acquaintance that seeks out people to take his horses on trail rides.
He likes his horses to be ridden at least twice a week. His only restriction is his younger horses that aren’t seasoned have to be ridden by an experienced horseman, so they don’t get bad habits from beginner riders.
Why you should rent a horse
People without much horse experience or those wanting to experience riding without the expense and responsibility of horse ownership benefit from renting a horse.
Also, prospective buyers and those without land to house a horse gain from horse rentals. When you rent a horse, you can learn to ride, tack, and groom horses without the expense of owning.
When you finish riding a rental horse, you’re done; you don’t have to worry about feeding them, checking their feet, or floating their teeth. It’s essential to understand the expenses and responsibilities involved in horse ownership before committing to buying one.
Riding horses are unlike many other hobbies; if you ride motorcycles, you can park it after you finish and not check on it again until your next ride. Putting your horse away and forgetting about it is not an option with horses.
They are like having another family member. Some take a lot of care and need a special diet. They are prone to diseases if they are not correctly cared for.
A couple of common diseases are colic and founder, both of which can be caused by improper feeding practices. If you don’t know horses or don’t have friends, you can rely on it’s best to rent a horse until you gain the knowledge necessary to care for your animal.
Keeping horses is expensive; they do best in pastures, which can cost a lot of money, especially if you live in an area with high land prices. And you have to consider the costs of tack, vet bill, farrier costs, and feed expenses.
How much is it to rent a horse?
The cost to rent a horse depends on many factors, including the region, type of horse, length of the rental, and even the time of day. For example, you can rent a horse for a beach ride in Florida for 100 dollars an hour during the day, but the price increases to 150 dollars an hour for sunrise and sunset rides.
There are many horse rental opportunities where I live, so the prices are reasonable compared to other regions. You can rent a horse for trail riding for around 30 dollars an hour, and for 50 dollars an hour, you can rent a horse and have lessons.
However, in California, you can rent a horse for just 40 dollars an hour and ride in Griffin Park overlooking Los Angeles. It seems like a bargain and something I intend to do. Click this link to visit the LA HORSE RENTALS website for more information.
Horse leasing vs. renting
Horse leasing is typically a long-term rental of a horse that allows one to bring the leased horse home and treat it as your own for a specific amount of time and money. In other words, a long term rental.
Horse leasing agreements spell out the specifics of what is expected from the lessor and lessee. Typically the lessee is responsible for all costs associated with the horse while it’s under contract.
The lessee typically bears the costs of insurance, horseshoes, vet bills, and feed. Horse leasing is most common in equine sporting events. For example, a showjumper pays an owner to use their horse to compete for a season.
If the lessee wins the competition, it benefits both the owner and lessee. When you rent a horse for a day, you are doing just that, paying to use a horse for a specific period during one day.