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Car rental in Sweden and Norway

My husband and I are planning a trip to Scandinavia this summer. We are going to Finland, Sweden, Norway and Copenhagen. We plan to rent a car and drive in both Sweden and Norway. My question is should we rent separate cars in Sweden and Norway or can we drive easily between the countries?

At issue is:
Norway's electronic toll system if the car is rented in Sweden
The high cost of returning a car in a different country

Is there anything else we should know?


Posted by
5818 posts

I'm one of those travelers who avoids self driving while on a European holiday. Public transportations, trains and coaches work well for me. But if you want to self drive, here are some Norwegian links that explain the toll systems:

Why register foreign rental / leasing cars? If you register, you as
the renter / lessee will receive the invoice directly. If you don’t
register, the invoice will be sent to the rental / leasing company.
The company may add administration fees to cover their cost of
handling the invoice and collecting the amount from the renter /
lessee. Please register to get started.

There are also tolls to enter Oslo:

Congestion charge and environmental differentiation rates apply to the
prices at Oslo's toll points:

It is more expensive to pass during rush hour, i.e. 6.30–9 am and 3–5
pm. It is more expensive to pass with a diesel vehicle, and free with
electric and hydrogen vehicles. Regular prices apply to gasoline and
hybrid vehicles.

You are charged every time you drive into the city, not when you drive
out of the city.

The hotels I use in Oslo, Helsinki and Copenhagen were city hotels and did not appear to have parking lots attached to the property. See:

Given the hassle and expense of driving a car into the city centers, one strategy if you must have a private car is to rent when you leave on major city and return when to get to your next major city designation. Use transit in the city and not pay to have a parked car sitting around in the metro areas.

Posted by
6 posts

Thanks. Very useful. I don't think we'll rent continuously and rent on an as needed basis.

Posted by
4862 posts

Have you planned your route? Stockholm also has a congestion charge and parking is expensive.

Posted by
3346 posts

Outside of Oslo in Norway, you will find few toll roads. I don't recall paying any except for one tunnel near Kristiansund north of Alesund. There is a charge to put the car onto ferries but you pay with a credit card once you are on the ferry.

Posted by
3928 posts

Just a note that I failed when looking for a map of an "Oslo congestion charge zone," then gradually realized that it isn't a congestion charge at all, it's an anti-sprawl charge and the toll plazas are located way out of center. So as long as one stays within a zone 5 miles or so from center then there's no charge, it's just passing in from the fringe of the city where there is a charge, to penalize those who live way out of center. The "congestion charge" referred to in the VisitOslo link above means that there is a rush hour surcharge on the fee.

This old link shows the idea

Posted by
6 posts

Thanks. All this advice is helpful. I think we will rent a car on a as needed basis. We plan to camp in Norway and Sweden and will just get cars for those excursions.

Posted by
5818 posts

We plan to camp in Norway and Sweden...

We have taken trains and/or busses to trail heads for hut to hut ski tours. Same could be done for trekking giving you the option of a point to point route not needing to get back to your car.

Both Norway and Sweeden have freedom to roam rights (and responsibilities):

Norway's trekking assocaition (DNT) is a good camping resource:
You may want to consider the DNT mountain huts/lodges.