Renting a car in Italy is a great idea if you really want to explore the countryside, particularly the southern portion, or small villages and regions such as Puglia, Sicily, and Napoli. Here are 7 things that you need to know before renting a car and driving in Italy:
1. You’ll need an international driving permit
In most countries you could drive with your local license, but if your driver’s license is from a country outside the EU, you should have an international driving permit to drive in Italy. There is no test to get it, you should do it online before your trip, you just need to have a valid local license and pay the fee.
2. Rent your car with time
If you book your car before your trip to Italy, you will get a better price, otherwise you will end up paying more. Booking online also means that you can choose a great Italian car. You can find more information about car hire in Italy here: https://www.autoitaly.co.uk/car-hire-tips-italy/.
3. Practice manual
If you used to automatic cars, you should start practice driving with a stick shift. Most Italians drive manual cars, so if you are planning to rent an automatic car you will have to pay much more. In Italy automatic cars are rare and expensive.
4. Don’t speed up, you’ll get caught
Italian loves speed, in fact their speed limit is a little bit higher compared to other countries, that is 130 Km/h in motorways and 50 Km/h in urban areas, but if speed above those limits you will get caught; fines are expensive.
5. Rent a GPS and buy a map
While driving in Italy you should have both, a GPS and a good map. Having a back-up map is always a good idea when you are on a road trip, because at some point your GPS might misinform you.
6. Avoid driving in cities like Rome
Most Italian cities have great public transport system and plenty of taxis, besides they are very walkable, renting a car and driving in a big city like Rome, is a waste of time, money and you’ll end up very stressed. Don’t do it.
7. Follow the terrain
Italy is famous for its exquisite food, incredible history and… for great cars. So, you would think that the whole country would be crossed by great motorways, it isn’t. Most countryside roads are narrow, winding and they follow the terrain, if you think about it this could be great, just let your worries at the city and enjoy driving through beautiful Italian landscapes.