You can find many website which offer to lend photography gear:
- zilok is a renting website which allow for both professionnal and individual renting of any object. You can search for a place close to yours to rent from.
- borrowlenses.com allows you to rent cameras, lenses and accessories for 3 days to 4 weeks. You even get to borrow underwater gear. Free pick-up at San Carlos, CA (headquarters) or $15 fee if pickup in another pick-up location (CA only).
- sg.camerarental.biz is the leading house of camera renting in Singapore. Apart from cameras and lenses, you can also rent a studio and studio equipment.
- camerent.co.uk is a uk based renting house which has a nice choice of Canon and Nikon products. Prices are good.
- fr.zilok.com is the French branch of zilok website. As there are individuals renting their gear, prices may vary a lot.
- prophotorental.com seems very attractive with nice prices and free two-way shipping over the US. You can rent from Canada too, but shipping is not free.
I can come up with many situations in which renting can be a good idea.
First before buying stuff. If you take even one day to test a lens or whatever, you can have a good idea of how you feel it. Plus you can rent several challengers and select the one which best fit your needs.
Some things can be useful to you only once in a while. For example if you're rather a macro photographer and go to a motorbike race, you might not have the super telephoto you need, and maybe you don't want to spend too much for this single time.
Say you're on holiday, and you didn't take some lens because you wanted to carry a light bag. Now you really miss it, and it would be silly to buy a new one.
Of course renting is not flawless. First the money spent is lost. Yeah... Then shipping is not always good or cheap. But the worse case is when you look for non Canon non Nikon stuff. It's not too easy to find!