General Information about Driving in Italy
Italy has an excellent network of roads and highways that is one of the most extensive in Europe, comprising nearly 4000mi/6400km of express highways and 180,000mi/288,000km of secondary roads. The country's famous super highways or 'autostrade' ('autostrada' is the singular form) run the length and breadth of the peninsula. These toll roads are supported by an excellent network of secondary roads, classified into different categories of national highways ('strade statali'), provincial roads ('strade provinciali') and municipal roads ('strade communali'). Due to the success of companies like Fiat, Italians have a high level of car ownership. This can create congestion in some of the northern areas and in cities. But in southern parts of the country the roads are less crowded.
To rent a car in Italy, you must be at least 21 years old (rental car age requirements may vary by car category) and have held your license for 1 year. Drivers under the age of 25 may incur a young driver surcharge. An International Drivers License is strongly recommended for rentals in Italy. Seatbelts are mandatory and children under 12 must be in an age-appropriate restraint. The blood-alcohol limit for driving is .08.
Speed limits in Italy are as follows: City 30mph/50kph Open Roads 66mph/110kph Highways 81mph/130kph
Rules of the Road
Traffic travels on the right and the center lane of a three lane road is for passing. If you are stopped for a traffic violation, police are empowered to collect fines on the spot. More information about driving in Italy can be found in our Italy Travel Guide.
Gas stations are open from 7am to 12:30pm and from 3:30pm to 7pm. Most stations are closed on Sundays. There are 24 hour stations along the highways.
The 'autostrade' is Italy's toll super highway and toll cards can be purchased at banks or at Automoblie Club d'Italia (ACI) offices.
Street parking is confined to the right side of the street. In blue zones, a parking disk, obtained at tourist offices, ACI offices or gas stations must be displayed on the dashboard. Parking in this zone is limited to one hour.
Car rental insurance in Italy varies widely, so please review the information below prior to making your reservation. Regulations of the country where you rent the car will be in effect for the duration of your rental.
All our car rental rates include fire and third party liability insurance. In Italy, all our rates also provide collision and theft coverage. Specific insurance information for your reservation will be printed on your confirmation voucher. Super CDW may be offered locally to reduce the deductible as low as zero.
The following guidelines apply to rentals commencing in Italy.
In Italy Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) and theft protection are mandatory. CDW reduces the deductible (responsibility of the client) to US$125-US$1180. Theft protection reduces the deductible to US$305-US$1180. Third party liability insurance covers a maximum of US$2,000,000 in case of damage or injury to people or property outside of the rental car. Fire insurance is also included in our rates.
Personal Effects Protection insures select items if stolen from the rental car. This coverage is available with some suppliers at a rate of approximately US$7 per day. Personal Accident Insurance, when not included in our rates, is available at the rental counter for approximately US$10 per day.
Most car categories can be driven anywhere in Western Europe without restriction. Due to insurance regulations, there are restrictions on luxury car categories and on travel in certain countries. Auto Europe has special rental programs for driving into Eastern Europe. Please take a minute to ensure that your intended itinerary will be possible with the car you plan to rent.
Cars are not allowed into the following countries: Albania, Bosnia, Belarus, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Croatia, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Montenegro, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey, Ukraine and Yugoslavia.
NOTE: For an additional fee, travel into some Eastern European countries may be arranged for specific car categories with advance notice.
Domestic one-way car rentals are available between select locations when driving in Italy, additional fees may apply. There are fees for international one-way rentals and not all vehicles are allowed.
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