Portugal lagged behind other countries in Western Europe in developing a national highway system, and as a result superhighways are more limited. A four-line highway, or 'auto estrada,' runs about 360mi/590km from Lisbon to Porto. Two-lane highways of good quality connect the rest of the country.
To rent a car in Lisbon or elsewhere in Portugal, you must be at least 21 years old (age may vary by car category) and you must have held your license for 1 year. Drivers under the age of 25 may incur a young driver surcharge. Seatbelts are mandatory. Child seats are mandatory for children up to age 4.
Speed limits in Portugal are as follows: City 35mph/56kph Open Roads 55mph/88kph Highways 75mph/120kph
Rules of the Road
Traffic travels on the right. In traffic circles, vehicles inside the circle have the right of way. While driving in Portugal you must yield to disembarking tram passengers.
Gas stations are open from 7am to 10pm and many stations located on the highway are open 24 hours.
There is a toll highway, the 'Auto-Estrada,' that goes from Lisbon to Porto.
'Blue zone' parking exists in many Portuguese towns. You can obtain a cardboard disc, free of charge, from either the police or local motor club offices. Central Lisbon offers very little on-street parking.
Car rental insurance in Portugal 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. Our inclusive rates also provide collision and theft coverage at an advance purchase discount. You may elect to decline collision and theft coverage. If you plan to take advantage of coverage offered by your credit card, please contact your card issuer directly for details. Specific insurance information for your reservation will be printed on your confirmation voucher.
The following guidelines apply to rentals commencing in Portugal.
Fire and third party liability insurance is mandatory and is included in all rentals. Third party liability insurance is unlimited in Portugal in case of damage or injury to people or property outside of the rental car.
Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) and theft protection are included in our inclusive rates at a discount. CDW, if purchased at the rental counter, costs approximately US$14 - US$55 per day. Theft protection, if purchased at the rental counter, costs approximately US$5 - US$15 per day. CDW and theft coverage reduce the deductible (responsibility of the client) to US$1140 - US$3975, depending on the vehicle type that is rented. Personal Accident Insurance (PAI) is available at the rental counter for approximately US$5 - US$8 per day. Super CDW may be offered locally to reduce the deductible as low as zero. Optional insurance coverage is available with select suppliers only, rates subject to change without notice.
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. Please take a minute to ensure that your intended itinerary will be possible with the car you plan to rent.
Cars rented in Portugal 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. Luxury cars are not allowed into Italy. No cars may go onto the African continent.
Domestic one-way car rentals are available between select locations, additional fees may apply. There are fees for international one-way rentals, and not all vehicles are allowed.