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Colosseum Rome Italy
Colosseum Rome Italy
Leaning Tower of Pisa Italy
Leaning Tower of Pisa Italy
Florence Skyline Cathedral
Florence Skyline Cathedral

About Italy (IT)

The Mediterranean country of Italy has some of the world’s most recognizable landmarks, making it a popular destination for international visitors. Its capital city of Rome, also known as the Eternal City, has many of Italy’s best-known attractions, including the Roman Colosseum, the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps.

The central region of Tuscany is the perfect place to rent a car in Italy, for a leisurely road trip, offering scenic wineries and idyllic villages, as well as the storied cities of Pisa and Florence. The northern part of Italy is equally beautiful, with cities including Milan, Como, Venice and Turin. Car rentals in Italy are also ideal for a seaside holiday. The southern islands of Sicily and Sardinia have world-class beaches; other stunning Italian coastlines include Cinque Terre in the north and the Amalfi Coast in the south.

  Getting around

In and around major Italian cities such as Rome and Naples, driving can be a somewhat intense experience, especially during rush hour. Also keep in mind that some zones, such as the historic city centers, may be closed altogether to car traffic. If you enter one of these restricted zones, you may be fined.

On the highways (“L'Autostrada”), where Italian drivers tend to go quite fast, stay in the right-hand lane unless you are passing another car. In the small villages, you may encounter very narrow roads that can be difficult to navigate with larger vehicles.

  Choosing your car

You will find a range of different car rental companies in Italy, including major providers such as Enterprise, Europcar and Sixt. If you are driving to more rural agricultural areas, you may want to rent a 4x4 or SUV, which can handle dirt roads. On the other hand, in cities a more compact option, such as a Fiat or Volkswagen (also a great choice for a cheap car rental), can more easily navigate narrow streets. Other options for your Italy car rental are a convertible, a sports car, a luxury sedan, or a 7—12 person people mover or mini van.

  Tips and advice for renting a car in Italy


In Italy, recall that you drive on the right-hand side of the road, as in most European countries.


Be sure to respect the speed limit, as there are control cameras, notably along highways, that can issue a ticket and fine automatically.


For a unique local experience, try booking an “agriturismo,” a rural rental that is usually located on a working farm. This is one of the best ways to discover a truly authentic Italian experience.


Note that if you have more than 0.5mg of blood alcohol when you take the wheel, you may be found guilty of drunk driving. As this is a low limit (about one glass of wine), it’s better to avoid driving after drinking alcohol.


Italy, a southern European country, can get very warm in the summer. It’s therefore a good idea to book a car hire with air conditioning.


Italy has two independent republics within its borders: Vatican City, home of the Holy See, and the micro-republic of San Marino. If you plan to crossing into one of these, double-check with the rental car company to make sure that you don’t face an unexpected border crossing surcharge.

Are you driving a rental car in Italy?

Urban Speed Limit


50 kph  | 31.1 mph
Rural Speed Limit


90 kph  | 55.9 mph
Motorway Speed Limit


130 kph  | 80.8 mph
Fuel Price




Road Driving


Driving Age


18 years of age
21 years of age to RENT
Emergency Services


Documentation requirements



Here's some more in depth Italy driving rules and guidelines for car renters:

Before hitting the road in Italy, one must know the ins and outs of all the matters pertaining to driving on the beautiful yet sometimes crazy Italian roads. If you equip yourself with such knowledge now you’ll be sure to have a fun and enjoyable experience when you’re there. Why not follow this simple guide, complete with facts and figures to keep yourself safe:


Before you rent or take a car to Italy, you will need to know what documents you are legally required to have on your person when in control of a vehicle. You will need to carry:

  • Driver’s licence or IDP
  • Car insurance documents
  • Photographic proof of ID
  • Ownership or permission to drive the vehicle

Age Restrictions

  • The minimum age for driving in this country is eighteen (18) years.
  • Children of four (4) years or under must be seated in a standard regulation safety seat.
  • Children under twelve (12) years of age must be seated in the back with a fastened seatbelt.

Driving Rules, Laws and Regulations

  • You drive on the right hand side of the road
  • Keep right and overtake on the left
  • Overtaking is prohibited at bends, at the top of a hill, places of restricted visibility and intersections
  • Always carry license while driving
  • Should obey traffic signs
  • On the autostrada (expressway), you must drive with your lights on
  • Give priority to pedestrians
  • Keep lights on while driving on dual carriageways and other roads during reduced visibility

Speed Limits and Fines

Under normal road conditions the following speed limits apply at all times:

  • 130km/h (80mph) on expressways.
  • 110km/h (68mph) on highways.
  • 90km/h (55mph) on roads outside cities/built-up areas.
  • 50km/h (31mph) on roads in cities/built-up area.

Failing to adhere to these speed limits will incur fines that you will have to either pay within 60 days or immediately, depending on the situation, but whatever the case, you’ll have no choice but to pay.

Drunk Driving

Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) of 0.05mg/100ml is the legal blood-alcohol limit in Italy, but 0mg for those who have been driving less than three years. Police in Italy may carry out random alcohol tests on drivers. Failing a blood-alcohol test has serious consequences. The vehicle will be seized, the driver will be fined and have their licence confiscated, and in more serious cases, the driver may also be imprisoned.


Blue road signs indicate paid parking zones, which provide some hours of free parking every day and on Sundays, this all depends on the area. Blue stripes indicate limited parking and there will be a ticket machine.

If a vehicle is parked on a pavement it will be clamped. Freeing your vehicle will involve a fine. If the vehicle is obstructing traffic then it will be towed away, which will also involve a fine to release it.

The international sticker for disabled parking can be used in specially marked zones, indicated by yellow lines and the yellow wheelchair symbol.

A final note is that all of these rules apply to everyone without exception. Keep this in mind while driving and you’ll be sure to enjoy your time spent traveling on the Italian roads, be it in the city or countryside.

Italy Driving Ideas Guide

One of the most visited countries in the world, Italy is not only naturally beautiful but filled with cultural attractions, ancient ruins and incredible cuisine.

From the hustle and bustle of Rome to the tranquil countryside in Tuscany, Italy is just waiting to be explored. With over 6700 kilometres of highway, exploring this Mediterranean masterpiece at your leisure by rental car is a must!

So we thought we would help you and suggest a few areas that should not be missed as you travel through beautiful Italy!


No trip to Italy is complete without a visit to Rome, the capital of the country and home to a number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Rome is a tourist’s dream with plenty to see and do! For lovers of all things historical, Rome is truly a treasure trove of attractions.

Not only is it filled with some of the best museums in Europe (if not the world), it has many ancient buildings to discover. These include the Pantheon, the Colosseum, the Roman Forum and St Peter’s Basilica.

No doubt you will feel a little hungry after a day spent exploring ancient ruins. No need to worry as Rome is a gastronome's delight! Mediterranean flavours are the order of the day and no doubt you will have a full belly by the time your tired body climbs into bed.

Accommodation in Rome is varied and includes hotels, backpackers lodges and holiday apartments to name a few.


Now this is where a rental car is well worth it! Take a long, slow drive through the Italian countryside as you wind your way to Tuscany, one of the most famous regions in Italy.

The Tuscan region is not all about its scenic beauty and food. Tuscany is home to some of Italy’s most recognisable tourist attractions including the Tower of Pisa (careful it doesn’t fall on you) and the statue of David, carved by Michelangelo which can be found in Florence.

A trip to the small town of Vinci, a mere 45 kilometres from Florence brings you to Leonardo da Vinci Museum. Probably the most famous Tuscan of them all, Da Vinci’s Museum is filled with many of his works (including his inventions) and has an excellent library as well.

Amalfi Coast

Set in the south-west Campania region of the country, the Amalfi coast is the perfect stretch to explore at your own leisure. This area of Italy is filled with spectacular views, cliff top fishing villages and incredible beauty. The lure of the Mediterranean is strong here but expect to find a more rural feel as the people of the region depend on the sea for their livelihoods.

Nearby attractions include the ruins of Pompeii, Mount Vesuvius, the beautiful town of Sorrento as well as the multitude of small fishing villages in the region, each with their own unique charm, traditional food and excellent wine!

Cheaperthancars and Cheaperthanhotels offer great deals for both car rental and accommodation. This saves you money that can then be used to make your holiday even more special!

Your Cheaperthancars Team

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Frequently asked questions about renting a car in Italy

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1. What is the best time of year to book a rental car in Italy?

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2. Is it possible for one way rentals in Italy?

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3. Should I rent a round trip or one-way rental in Italy?

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4. Which location should I rent my car from in Italy?

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5. Do I pay more fees and taxes for renting a car at the airport in Italy?

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6. What insurance do I require for driving a rental car in Italy?

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7. What is the best way to save money on rental car insurance in Italy?

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8. Should I prepay my rental car booking in Italy?

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9. What are the largest numbers of vehicle seats available for a rental car in Italy?

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10. What types of sports and special cars are available in Italy?

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11. Can I take my rental car across borders in Italy?

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12. How do I inform the rental company I will be crossing a border from the Italy?