Car Hire in Bologna
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Bologna is a beautiful city in northern Italy between the Reno and Savena rivers on the edge of Tuscany, nestled in the Apennine Mountains. It is the seventh most populous city in Italy, is home to the oldest university in the world, and is famous for extremely delicious food and interesting history. Bologna is easily accessible by plane, train or car and offers a wide range of activities in the city itself. With its prime location, it can also serve as a base for exploring Italy. Both Venice and Verona are only a 2-hour drive away, as is Tuscany, the heart of Italy. Bologna is a city that comes to the fore especially at night, so be sure to plan an evening stroll through the beautiful streets and observe the play of shadows offered by popular porticoes. Like many Italian cities, Bologna has a nickname, actually three of them: "La Dotta, La Grassa, la Rossa", referring to the three main Bolognese first impressions. Translated, it means "the learned" because Bologna is home to the oldest university in Europe, "the fat" because of the cuisine, and "the red" because of the political orientation and a large number of red roofs and marble buildings in the city.
Basic info and car hire in Bologna
- Location: Northern Italy
- Population: 395.000
- Official language: Italian
- Currency: Euro
- Weather: Transitional Mediterranean Climate
- Internet coverage: Hotels, bars, restaurants, and cafés offer Wi-Fi.
- Road conditions: Most roads in Bologna are in good condition.
- Car hire in Bologna: The most common pick-up point for vehicles in Bologna is at the Railway Station or Bologna Airport. Please note that prices vary frequently. It is best to book a car 3 to 8 weeks before your desired pick-up date - this will ensure you get the cheapest rental rate. Alternatively, it is also possible to find cheap last-minute car hire. Find the best deal on car hire in Bologna!
Driving in Bologna
If you have decided to rent a car in Bologna, or if you are there just for sightseeing, you should know that driving in the city centre is not easy and that you must be careful not to drive in prohibited areas. Note that a large part of the old town is part of the ZTL, the traffic calm zone and that the entrances to the ZTL are monitored by cameras. Traffic can be pretty heavy in many parts of the city, and the closer you get to the centre, the more cyclists, pedestrians, scooters and other motorcycles appear, which can make it difficult for you to drive
If you are planning a road trip through Italy, Bologna is a must-see. There is so much to do and see in the city, and if you like to drive scenic country roads and have enough time, you should not miss the Bolognese Apennines. A road trip through this area offers so many opportunities to discover hidden little towns among the hills and valleys. Each of them has only a small number of inhabitants and reflects the local history and culture.
- Age limits: 21 years old-25 for larger vehicles
- International Driving Permit: Yes, if you are a non-EU license holder.
- Additional papers: Identification(passport), a valid driving license, and valid proof of insurance.
- Additional requirements: Glasses (in case you need glasses, you must always have a spare pair in the car), light bulbs (are usually already in the car and are provided by the car rental company), warning triangle (2 are required for all vehicles registered in Italy and one if coming from abroad), high visibility vest (recently made compulsory)- First aid kit (not mandatory, but we strongly recommend you have it with you, just in case).
- Children in the car: Children up to the age of 12 may only be taken in the back seat, and a suitable child seat must be available up to a height of 1.50 meters.
- Driving side of the road: Right hand
- Lights: Check that all lights are working, clean, and correctly aimed.
- General speed limits: The speed limit in cities is 50 km/h, although, in certain areas, the speed limit may be reduced to 30 km/h. Main highways are limited to 130 km/h, non-major highways to 110 km/h, and local roads to 90 km/h.
Car Hire in Bologna
Most popular car hire at Bologna
The most selected hire car in Bologna is the Fiat Panda, Renault Clio or Opel Corsa, Ford Focus is also being a popular option. The most popular car types in Bologna are mini and economy.
Popular Driving Routes
Popular One-Way car hire from Bologna
Want to rent a car for a one-way trip? No worries! Orbit Car Hire offers a variety of one-way Car Hire options in many locations outside of Bologna. One-way car rental is ideal for cross-town or cross-country travel, saving time by not returning to your original location. Start your reservation with Orbit Car Hire and find great options on one-way car hire at locations across the Italy.
- Bologna-Pisa 2 hr 8 min (176 km)
- Bologna-Rome 4 hr 9 min (375 km)
- Bologna-Milan 2 hr 31 min (213 km)
- Bologna-Naples 5 hr 46 min (575 km)
Popular day trips from Bologna
Thanks to Bologna's convenient location, there are many day trips to nearby cities and towns. If you decided to stay in Bologna during your holidays, the car will be a great help to discover many of the nearby attractions.
The first one is certainly Milan, the world metropolis for fashion and design, which is only 2 hours away by car. It is not considered the most beautiful city, but it has so much to offer. From art and culture, including the majestic Dumo, to great restaurants with gastronomic tradition and of course, you should not miss the oldest shopping mall in the world, Galleria Vittorio Emanuele. If you want to shop, this is the perfect place to do it; the shopping experience here is breathtaking.
And if you have never been to Venice or Florence, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity. Both are among the most beautiful and inspiring cities in Italy and are only an hour and a half drive from Bologna. Venice will enchant you with its magnificent views, stunning canals and countless bridges to cross. Florence will certainly not leave you indifferent with its rich history, which includes the most famous works of the Italian Renaissance and where you can admire paintings by greats such as Leonardo Da Vinci and Michelangelo.
For foodies, Parma, home of the world-famous Parmesan cheese and Prosciutto di Parma ham is a must-see. It is a picturesque, colourful city with a lively atmosphere, many shops and good restaurants that invite you to try traditional dishes.
Vicencio is a small town surrounded by hills and countryside, known for its natural beauty and especially for the architectural masterpieces of the Renaissance genius Palladio. The best way to explore the city is on foot, as the city centre is very compact and very pleasant to walk around. The streets are paved with cobblestones and surrounded by beautiful buildings, and there are several outdoor cafes here and there. If you have a car, you can also drive to the surrounding areas to visit some of the villas. There are also many shops where visitors can rent bicycles for trips within the city.
What to see in Bologna
The towers of Bologna - Asinelli and Garisenda
The towers of Bologna are undoubtedly the symbol of the city. The two towers dominate the city centre from above and are an architectural heritage that still characterizes the cityscape today. Seeing them is one of the daily joys of Bologna's inhabitants, who love and respect the two patron saints. A stop at Piazza di Porta Ravegnana is a must to see these wonders in all their glory.
The Church of San Petronio
As you cross Piazza Maggiore, you will be impressed by the Church of San Petronio. Its façade is a triumph of contrast between light and darkness. At night, the marble seems to glow with its light and the bricks above it merge with the starry sky. After visiting the inside of the church, you will want to take to the skies and climb up to the terrace. The entrance is located in Piazza Galvani. Once at the top, you will have an impressive panorama over the red roofs of Bologna.
Le Sette Chiese and Piazza Santo Stefano
Piazza Santo Stefano is one of the most fascinating squares in Italy. The complex of Seven Churches that dominates the square is undoubtedly a masterpiece of religious architecture. The Basilica of Santo Stefano is made up of seven churches that have been rebuilt and expanded over the centuries. In this way, the complex of seven churches represents the evolution that the city has undergone from its beginnings to the present day.
The Quadrilatero district
El Quadrilatero is probably the most picturesque district. The district was once dedicated to trading and consists of old medieval craft streets. Today this tradition is still present and if you visit the Quadrilatero you will see: Luxury shopping and "Botteghe", gastronomy with typical products and restaurants.
Piazza Maggiore is the heart of Bologna and one of the oldest squares in Italy. This is where the life of the Bolognese people meets and where the great events that animate the city take place. If you want to experience the city, take at least fifteen minutes to sit on the "crescent moon" that lines the square to see what's going on around you and to admire the magnificent buildings that line the city and surround the main square.
Where to eat and drink in Bologna
Bologna is the food capital of Italy, and you are probably not the only one who knew the food in Bologna before you even knew where Bologna was. The city's nickname is "La Grassa", which means the fat one. When it comes to what to eat and drink in Bologna, you certainly will not miss the appetizer plate that is offered in every restaurant, Tratorria in translation. The plate contains all the traditional cheeses and hams such as Mortadela, Prosciutto, Parmigiano, Formaggio di Fossa...and is served with bread. You should try the authentic Italian version of Lasagna Bolognese or Spaghetti Bolognese. There are also more than 10 different types of pasta that can be served with different sauces or ragus made from local ingredients like truffles, tomatoes, spinach, etc. If you love wine, you will have many opportunities to try it. This region produces about 60% of Italy's red wine. Eat like a local and enjoy a bottle of Sangiovese with tagliatelle ragu. Like any other Italian city, you absolutely must try a pizza, at least the take-out version. If you have enough room in your belly, do not forget the gelato and the Pesca all'alchermes.
Best restaurant in Bologna
Trattoria Da Me - dal 1937
Osteria al 15
Trattoria la Montanara
What you need to know about renting a car
What do I need to rent a car in Italy?
A credit card in the name of the main driver needs to be presented. A security deposit may be required while renting a car so the credit card must have sufficient funds. You can find details about the security deposit listed while booking the vehicle as well as on your voucher. It is important to have a valid driving license with the name of the main driver as well as additional drivers when it applies. An International Driving Permit is required in addition to a National Driving License if the National Driving License you or any of the Additional Drivers hold is not clearly identifiable as a Driving License, eg, it is in a non-Latin alphabet (eg Arabic, Chinese, Cyrillic, Japanese). It can also depend on the country or car rental company you are renting with. If you have found a car on our website, you can press the rental terms link from the supplier for more information about driving license requirements. You will need to have identification with you such as a passport and ID cards. When you pick up your rental car you need to have your voucher with you.
How old to hire a car in Italy?
The minimum age to rent a car for Economy groups are 19 years old renters. For Compact, Intermediate car groups are available for 21 years old renters. Full-size vans and standard car Groups are available for 25 years old renters. With some suppliers for people over 75 years of age. Young driver surcharges may apply to many car rental companies for people under 21 years of age.
Do I need car insurance in Italy?
Insurances are very important when renting a car and can be different between countries. When renting a car in Italy with Orbit Car Hire the prices will include mandatory insurances in the country.
Do I need a credit card to rent a car in Italy?
In most cases, a credit card is required to be presented in the name of the main driver. A security deposit may be required when renting a car so it is important to have sufficient funds on the credit card. When searching for a car at Orbit you can see credit card requirements from all our suppliers.
Do I need an international driving license in Italy?
Drivers license issued in Italy or within the European Union does not have to provide an international drivers license. For drivers with a license issued outside of the EU will need to have an international driving license as well as your standard driving license. You must have both licenses with you at all times while driving a car in Italy.
How do I find the cheapest car hire in Italy?
You can find cheap car hire by comparing prices with all major car rentals at Orbit. A good idea can be to book in advance as the prices can increase closer to the travel period.
What is the cheapest rental car in Italy?
You will find the mini car category or economy cars to be the cheapest car categories. Vehicles such as Hyundai I10 and Fiat Panda often provide the best prices.
What is the best car rental company in Italy?
You may find excellent service provided by companies such as Europcar, Enterprise Rent a Car, Alamo, Keddy by Europcar, SurPrice Rent a Car, Ecovia, Sicily By Car and Locauto.
What types and makes of rental car deals can I find in Italy?
You will find car types such as mini, economy, compact, Full-Size, and luxury cars. Popular rental cars are Fiat Panda, Opel Corsa, Renault Clio, Fiat 500.
Does my rental car have unlimited mileage when I rent a car in Italy?
Most car rentals in Italy offer unlimited mileage in their offers.
How much to hire a car in Italy?
We have found prices down to 8 GBP per day. However, this may depend on the rental period, location and company.
Can you take a hire car from Italy to Slovenia?
Yes, most car hire companies will allow you to drive over to Slovenia while you have a vehicle for rent. It is a good idea to talk to the agent at the counter about this before heading out on the road. To get all necessary information needed.
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