The vibrant and historic Rhodes is beautiful to visit and renting a car in Rhodes is one of the best ways to see as much as possible. Although the island is relatively small, there is lots to see and do and renting a car gives you the flexibility to travel and explore at your own pace. We found driving safe and easy and we highly recommend renting a car in Rhodes. Here are our tips for renting a car in Rhodes to help you on your journey!
Tips for Renting a Car in Rhodes
Overall, we found driving in Rhodes to be very safe and easy. We encountered good, albeit narrow, roads and a mostly high standard of driving.
Why Rent a Car in Rhodes?
Rhodes is one of the most beautiful Greek islands and is home to incredible sights such as the Lindos Acropolis, the Tharri Monastery and Ancient Kameros. It is also extremely easy to navigate by car.
Renting a car in Rhodes is one of the best ways to experience everything the island has to offer. We spent days exploring the best beaches in Rhodes, sampled food from across the island, wandered through its historic sights and visited its painted churches.
We loved having the flexibility to explore the Island at our own pace, visit off the beaten track sights and generally make the most of our time in Rhodes.
1 | Booking your rental car
Renting a car in Rhodes is relatively cheap. Demand for rental cars during the peak summer months is usually high so it’s worth booking your car in advance.
We’re huge fans of road trips and have driven rental cars in almost 50 countries so we have a lot of experience renting cars in foreign countries. We recommend using RentalCars.com to reserve your car. We’ve found they have a great selection of cars at competitive prices – check prices now
Renting a car in Rhodes tip: The biggest benefit of having a rental car in Rhodes is that you can easily access the lesser known sights and also visit the popular ones before they get busy. It also saves you the cost of the airport transfers and transport during your stay.
2 | Choosing a rental car
We highly recommend getting the smallest car possible that will suit your travel party. It was just Elaine and I in Rhodes and we travelled with hand luggage only so we rented a super-compact car. This proved extremely useful as parking at our hotel in the Old Town was much easier with a smaller car. You’ll also have many more parking options with a small car when you visit the rest of the island.
Renting a car in Rhodes tip: Some of the roads and parking spaces are extremely narrow in Rhodes so renting a small car will save you a lot of headaches during your trip!
3 | Renting Eligibility
Most rental companies require drivers to be at least 21 and to have held their license for more than one year. Some companies impose a surcharge for renters aged under 25.
Where to Stay in Rhodes
Rhodes has an incredible selection of hotels and there are options for every budget and taste from boutique hotels in the heart of the old town to stunning ocean view resorts:
- Evdokia Boutique – where we chose to stay in Rhodes and the location couldn’t be better. Located right in the heart of the old town, this chilled boutique hotel is a perfect base for exploring the island. Everything in the old town is a short walk, there is one guest parking spot and the rest of the island is a short drive away. We really enjoyed this hotel and highly recommend it – check prices now!
- In Camera Art Boutique Hotel – another great option for staying medieval old town. Similar to the Evdokia the In Camera Art Boutique Hotel is located inside the old city walls. With great food, comfortable historic room and stunning views of the city from the roof this is a great option for the old town – check prices now!
- Atrium Platinum Luxury Resort Hotel & Spa – for those who prefer a luxury resort the best one on the island is probably the Atrium Platinum. With panoramic sea views, multiple pools and a location close to the old town, the Atrium Platinum is a great option for those looking for a more traditional luxury hotel – check prices now!
4 | Sim card
We recommend purchasing a SIM card with data when travelling around Greece. We always find having mobile data invaluable for navigating in the rental car. It also meant that we could research places to visit when we were on the road.
It was really useful to have mobile data while exploring Rhodes. You can order your prepaid sim card online with Sim Options before you travel so you don’t have to stress about finding one at the airport when you land – check prices now!
5 | International Driving Licence
An International Drivers Permit (IDP) is a document separate to your driving licence that is essentially a translation of your actual drivers licence to a number of different languages. This allows authorities in the country you are visiting to understand your actual driving licence
Visitors to Rhodes, and Greece as a whole, with an EU licence do not require an IDP. Since 2018 Greek authorities require any non-EU licence holders who are renting a car in Greece to carry an IDP.
An IDP is easily obtained in your home country before you travel. You cannot get one after you leave your home country. Your rental car company will require this from you at the time of renting so make sure to get it before you travel.
We didn’t require an International driving licence as we have a European driving licence but we both have one which we renew every year.
Renting a car in Rhodes tip: While rental companies don’t always check if renters have an international licence, it will likely be an issue if you are stopped by the police or if you are in a traffic accident. Make sure to check the rules of the rental and if you require an international licence prior to travelling.
6 | Driving style
Like most small islands, driving in Rhodes is a lot more relaxed than mainland Greece and the drivers are courteous and easy going. We didn’t experience any issues or major traffic in Rhodes – the only real challenge was finding parking in busier locations such as Rhodes Town.
7 | Drive on the right-hand side of the road
Driving in Rhodes is on the right-hand side of the road similar to most of Europe and the USA.
8 | Road quality
The main road in Rhodes (the 95) which covers the eastern part of the island is in very good condition. The island’s other roads also fine for driving. Once
The smaller roads can be extremely winding and hilly so make sure you know where you’re going before you set out! We found these roads safe however you do need to take your time and watch out for local traffic such as farm machinery or cars.
9 | Parking
Most of the parking on Rhodes is free – Rhodes City is the only place where paid parking is enforced. We were lucky as our Old Town hotel had one parking space and we were able to use it freely during our low season stay.
Free street parking is almost non-existent in the old town and even finding an empty metered spot can be a challenge.
In Rhodes Town, you will notice the color coded road markings: white lines indicate free 24 hour parking, blue lines or a blue sign with a white P mean that a ticket is required the exception of Sunday’s (tickets are available at the automated machines) and yellow lines mean no parking or stopping.
Renting a car in Rhodes tip: try the windmills at Mandraki or the entrance to Amboise Gate. If you are lucky you might secure a free parking space.
10 | Traffic
We didn’t encounter any significant traffic in Rhodes. The port area of the Old Town can get busy however the traffic does move and areas around tourist sights like the Lindos Acropolis, one of the best things to do in Rhodes.
11 | Navigation
Google Maps worked fine and the app navigated us well during our time in Rhodes. There are not many roads in Rhodes so it’s difficult to get lost but it is helpful to have maps if you plan to explore the south of the island
12 | Fuel
Fuel is relatively expensive in Rhodes at around €1.60 per litre for petrol and €1.40 per litre for diesel. There are a number of stations around the island and most take both cash and credit cards.
Fuel is expensive but, given the island is relatively small, it’s unlikely you will spend much filling up during your time in Rhodes.
13 | Tolls
There are currently no toll roads in Rhodes.
14 | Car Seats for babies and children
We usually travel with our own car seats. It is also possible to reserve these with the car rental company. The rules state:
- Children under 135cm and aged between 3 and 11 must use an appropriate child restraint,
- Children under 3 must use an appropriate child restraint.
- The airbag must be deactivated if placing a rear-facing infant in the front passenger seat.