When and where to rent car? 5 travelers

Is it in our best interest to get out of Rome before renting a car and driving to La Spezia or renting in Rome. Drop off car in La Spezia or
drive to Milan. I truly appreciate people's advice and this website.

Posted by Roberto
Fremont, CA, USA
6704 posts

If you are going straight from Rome to the Cinque Terre without making stops to visit the areas in between, you may not need a car at all. I understand that 5 train tickets from Rome to the Cinque Terre may be a substantial amount, but once you add the daily car rental plus gas and tolls, a car may not be that much cheaper. Also there are cheaper trains that travel along the coast. Rent a car if you plan to visit places along the way for a few days, but otherwise I would reconsider.
You could rent in Rome and return to La Spezia. The coastal route is generally less congested and shorter.

Posted by Michael
Seattle, WA, USA
6726 posts

Train to Orvieto and pick up your rental car there. It's an hour outside of Rome, so you don't have to deal with all the city traffic.

Posted by Michele
Bellingham, Washington
9 posts

We rented a car in Padua and dropped it at La Spezia before going to the Cinque Terre. We loved having a car to drive around the countryside, but I will tell you that La Spezia was not easy to drive in. It took us a lot of "do-overs" to find the car rental agency, and then they added some sort of a tax to our bill. There was no arguing with them, as they just escorted us out the door.

Posted by Steve
Gaston, Oregon, USA
908 posts

We have rented cars twice in Rome, and then took off from there. We did not have a problem either time. The last time we got one at the airport and headed to our B&B's in Umbria and Tuscany. We used the car to take day trips to explore the area. Bring your GPS from home, your drivers license and IDP, and a Michelin map of Italy. For 5 people it will be quite helpful if you minimize your luggage!Check each and every city that you may drive in for maps of their ZTL's. Check out rates and pick-up and drop off options on the the Autoeurope.com web site, and also look at the options that Kayak,etc will provide.

Posted by Tim
Knoxville, TN, USA
4369 posts

Good luck with a car big enough for 5 people AND too much luggage. Save yourself the headache and just take the train.