Driving in Italy – Driving Rules, Tips and Recommendations

PUBLISHED ON Jan, 20 2023


Renting a car in Italy can be cheap and simple. The sophisticated price comparison engine will help you save hundreds of Dollars in car rental in Italy – it automatically compares for you the best offers from car rental companies in Italy, including special offers, discounts, and good and cheap car rental companies that are unfamiliar to many travelers.

Simply enter the city in Italy where you are interested in renting a car, the dates of your planned family trip in Italy – and get cheap and special price offers for car rental in Italy. In addition, we have compiled for you important tips for driving in Italy and recommendations for renting a car in Italy.

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Car Rental In Italy – 10 Important Tips

Book in Advance

Do not wait until you arrive in Italy to rent a car. It is cheaper and more cost-effective to rent a car in Italy by prior reservation, when you are still in your home country.

The right time to rent a car when planning a trip to Italy – First, finish booking the flights and hotels where you plan to stay on a trip to Italy. So check at what location you want to rent the car and at what location you want to return it (usually the airport but not necessarily) and book the car accordingly – but do not wait for the last minute, you can usually get cheaper prices if you rent a car long in advance. During the summer there is a great demand for rental cars in Italy and some rental companies may run out of stock, book in advance to avoid heartache and problems.

Compare car rental prices in Italy – 

The search engine for car rental in Italy at the top of this page is continuously updated on car rental prices in Italy in all Italian car companies, including promotions, discounts and special deals on major booking sites using technology called  aggregator (data storage and price comparison). Just enter the relevant details and get the best quotes that will save you hundreds of shekels on car rental in Italy. Note that most major European car rental agencies are affiliated or cooperate with car rental companies you know like Hertz, Avis, sixth And more, and usually when you search for car rental in Italy you will come across offers and promotions of these large companies – which are also usually much more expensive than local Italian car rental companies that offer the cheapest prices for car rental in Italy, so it is highly recommended to use the service on this page to Get more affordable quotes.

Always check the full rate –  

Car rental agencies in Italy like to offer low initial daily rates, then add all sorts of “small print” extras, like insurance, taxes, tolls, one-way charges to pick up the rental car in one city and return it in another city Etc.). In Italy there is a law that basically requires anyone who rents a car in Italy to purchase two special car insurances called CDW (Collision Damage Waiver) and TP ( Theft Protection). From the car rental company in Italy. You will just have to do it, there is no other choice. But when it comes to buying car insurance apart from the two compulsory insurances, i.e. any other insurance, you can save money on car rental in Italy if you purchase this separately, not from the car rental company in Italy but from an insurance company. Through CarInsuRent you will usually find car hire excess insurance policies in Italy at cheaper prices and with better terms than you will get from a car rental company in Italy.

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Inspect the Car

When you get the rental car, do not forget to inspect the car before you set off. Italians can be problematic when it comes to scratches, dents or other damage to the vehicle that existed before you picked it, but was not specified and marked by an employee of the Italian car rental company who gave you the car. In such case you will be required to pay when you return the vehicle (and Italians are known to take advantage of such opportunities to charge tourists a lot of money).

Inspect the Renal Vehicle

Do not rent more than you need –

This is also true for the length of time you will need the vehicle, and also for the type of vehicle you will rent. Carefully check your itinerary and find out on which days you need a rental car and which do not. If, for example, you are flying to Italy for two weeks, and spending your first four days in Rome, do not rent a car for the whole two weeks. Renting a car in Rome is a bad idea because drivers in Rome are insane, it takes hours to find parking and the car parks are very expensive, so it is better to book the car starting from the last day in Rome and not from landing at the airport. If you are planning to spend a few days on a trip to Venice, keep in mind that in Venice it is simply impossible to drive. In fact, you do not need or want a car in any major city in Italy: Naples , Florence , Milan , Palermo, Turin and so on.

Public transport in the big cities in Italy is fast, efficient and cheap. You can save significant savings in car hire in Italy by giving up a rental car in big cities, travel between major city to another by train, and hire the vehicle for shorter periods when it is really effective in rural and more remote as Tuscany and Umbria, for example, or a trip to the island of Sicily , the The Dolomites or Puglia.

Choose the right model

Moreover, do not rent more than you need even when it comes to choosing a car model. A smaller car will provide you with better fuel efficiency while saving money on fuel expenses and car rental in Italy, and will also make driving on winding roads and narrow streets easier. If you can drive a car with a manual transmission, keep in mind that it is always cheaper to rent a car with manual transmission than automatic (in the rental costs themselves, beyond saving fuel consumption).

Avoid driving in the big cities in Italy – 

Many cities in Italy, especially Florence and Rome, apply the ZTL (Zone of Limited Traffic Zone) method which makes driving into the historic centers of the cities impossible or very expensive. Transportation policy in Italy creates a situation where it is simply unprofitable and illogical to drive a car in the big cities. If you give up driving in the big city where you land – Verona, Rome, Milan, etc. – also give up picking up the car at the airport, which usually raises car rental prices in Italy. Plan your trip so that you pick up the car at the city car rental agency on your last day in a particular city, it is much better than picking it up at the airport The airport when you land, just to drive with it to the hotel in the city and park it in the car park for a few days), and return the car the morning you arrive in the last big city.

Examine the possibility of short-term leasing 

In Italy there is a short-term leasing option, which can be lucrative if you rent a car in Italy for 17 days or more. If you are planning to rent a car in Italy for such a long period of time, consider the option of short-term leasing under the same conditions, and in most cases you will find that it is cheaper than renting a car for a similar period of time. If you are planning to rent a car in Italy for a month or more, there is no doubt at all that it is much more lucrative to perform short-term leasing, which has several other benefits – you will get a new car made of nylon, with all the insurance and no deductible.

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Check the ‘Rail and Drive Pass’

If you hire a car in Italy only for a few days as a part of a longer trip (eg trip by car between the villages of Tuscany in the middle of a longer trip includes a stay in Florence and hike in Pisa between major cities), you should check out the  Rail n ‘Drive Pass packages (special packages offered by car rental companies in Italy that combine train travel and car rental), the special card provides several days of unlimited train travel across Italy alongside several days of car rental. You can choose a package according to the number of car rental days you need.

Not just car rental – driver rental – 

Car rental in Italy is definitely a good way to travel, but not always the best way. Another option to consider is to hire the services of a private driver and guide who comes with his vehicle, at a lower cost than the cost of rental fees, fuel, fees, and entry prices to sites you would pay yourself. Facilitate this option especially if you plan to travel classics in Italy, as a trip to Pompeii from Rome, in the countryside of Tuscany Florence, a trip to Naples next to the Amalfi Coast Amalfi , or hike around Lake Garda or around Lake Como Como ), another advantage is the local guide takes care of the logistics, For traffic, parking, etc. and you just have fun. If you are planning a winery tour in Tuscany this is a highly recommended option that solves the big problem of a winery trip in Tuscany in a rented car – that the driver should avoid drinking wine.

Car Rental Insurance in Italy 

There are two types of car rental insurance: Those that deal with bodily injury, and those who deal with property injury. To travel quietly and know that you are “covered” financially in all respects, you have to go for sure – go for insurance. Some insurances will require an additional payment – there may be an automatic addition from the data presented by the driver, such as new or younger driver insurance, and some offers can be added to get more insurance coverage. 

We encourage you to read more about the types of insurance offered. The way to choose your car insurance starts online.

Collision Damage Waiver for Vehicles Rented in Italy

Collision Damage Waiver for vehicles rented in Italy is also called CDW. This type of insurance provides coverage for the vehicle itself, and also for damages made to the property of others by the vehicle – that is – it will also include third party insurance – in a standard insurance policy whose coverage is in a relatively low amount. In the event of damage, the deductible, also known as excess, will apply. Before you hire the vehicle it should be clear how much you will pay in the event you damage the rental vehicle. 

Annual Car Hire Excess Insurance

There is another type of  insurance – called Super CDW, which covers the cancellation of the deductible if the car is damaged. Purchasing Super CDW from the rental company is highly expensive and may double the rental price. We encourage you to explore our annual car hire excess insurance options as well as our European Car Hire Insurance which may save you up to 70% .

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Driving in Italy 

Follow all regulations and driving laws and all road signs – Although Italy is not the best known country for enforcing traffic laws and Italian drivers are known to be aggressive, but  do not try to emulate them. Italian drivers are well versed in Italian roads and traffic laws, keep in mind that they are experienced in driving in Italy and also know the meaning of all the signs, road signs and official traffic laws, as well as the unwritten rules of driving in Italy – and you do not. It is advisable to drive carefully and watch a video that includes important driving tips in Italy.

In addition, be especially careful to comply with all parking regulations and especially signs prohibiting parking in certain places. Parking in the big cities in Italy is a big problem in Italy and the Italian police are fighting parking offenders resolutely through heavy fines and also towing. In case you have received a report, it will reach the car rental agency in Italy, which always also takes a large fee for handling the fine, and will charge your credit card a significant amount.

Important traffic laws in Italy

Speed ​​limit: Urban area – 50 km / h. Secondary roads outside the cities – 90 km / h. Main roads outside the cities – 110 km / h. Highway – 130 km / h (110 at the weekend). Speed ​​limit on toll roads – 145 km / h.

What side of the road do they drive on in italy? – In Italy, drive on the right side of the road and overtake on the left.

Alcohol restriction in Italy – 80 mg for every 100 ml of blood. Obligation to obey a police officer’s request for a breath test!

Do not talk on a mobile device while driving.

Seat belts must be fastened at the front and back.

Seating in the front seat is prohibited for children under the age of 12 (except for babies in a suitable chair).

Lights must be turned on half an hour after sunset and up to half an hour before sunrise and every time you get under the bridges and tunnels.

It is mandatory to mark with a red and white ribbon any object that stands out from the vehicle, such as a tent, equipment, or bicycle that hangs on an outdoor installation.

More things to know about renting a car in Italy

Car Rental requirements

Age – The minimum age requirement for renting a car in Italy is 18. Note that you should have had your driving license at least one year before you are allowed to rent a car. 

If you are over the age of 25 you can get a car even with a “fresher” license.

Under the age of 25 you may need to add a charge for a “young driver”.

Driving without a driver’s license is against the law in Italy, so make sure that the rental and insurance documents are always with you. Your local driver’s license is respected so that from the point of view of the police you are covered, but this does not always work out with the rental companies and you might need an International Driver’s License .

Road system in Italy

Italy has one of the best road networks in Europe. The country’s famous freeway runs along the length and breadth of the peninsula. Driving a little less comfortable on small or remote roads.

Tunnel on the toll road of of northern Italy

On most highways across the country a toll is levied (toll roads are marked with the letter A). When you arrive at the payment station, enter the path marked with the Biglietto sign (ticket) or the unmarked path. The cost of the toll is usually derived from the distance traveled on the road and is determined using a card that the driver receives at the entrance to the road and which he is required to return at the exit. The price for the trip is about 7.5 euros per 140 km (this is a rough estimate, the payment is based on the parts of the highway you cross).

Fuel in Italy

Gas stations are open from 7:00 in the morning until 12:30 and then from 15:30 until 19:00 and most are closed on Sundays. Along highways, gas stations operate 24 hours a day.

Diesel fuel in Italian – GASSOLIO or DISEL and petrol – BENZINA.


Final Thoughts

Hopefully, you’ve found everything you need to know about car rental in Italy right here! We wish you a safe trip, and if you are renting a car, don’t forget to purchase car hire excess insurance.

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5 Responses

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  2. Royal Motor says:

    Amazing website or good information keep it up. Thanks .

  3. Nasir Malik says:

    Good piece of advice

  4. Ahmed says:

    I am traveling with car rental service many time but you have good information.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Can I buy a plan for just one day?

Yes. Insurance for a single day is available.

Can I buy a plan for part of my rental only?

No. We provide a single journey plan. You are covered from the time you pick up the rental car up to the time you return it or on the last date written on your Certificate of Insurance, whichever comes first.

Can I buy a plan when I pick up my rental car?

No. You should purchase a policy before starting your travel.

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