Should a Tourist Rent a Car? Pros and Cons

Travelling abroad has become an inevitable part of life for most modern people. Someone prefers to travel with “all-inclusive” – without the need to make any decisions, and take responsibility for the planning. One simply chooses a tour and enjoys his or her holiday, contemplating new and interesting places and being told about the history and places of interest by a travel guide. Today, however, more and more tourists are choosing a different way, not willing to depend on a well-defined plan. Travellers prefer to create their own trail, exploring the country ‘from within’, independent of the moods and routines of tour groups.

Some tourists can’t imagine their life without a steering wheel and a road or want to visit more than one city at a time. For those who like to travel by car, we have collected some tips and analyzed the pros and cons of renting a car abroad.

These days there are car rental agencies in almost all cities in the world. There are also international major rental companies such as Avis, Hertz, or Europcar. But if you want to rent a special car, you’d better choose a private local agency like To rent a car you should have at least one or two years of driving experience (different countries have their own requirements) and hold an international driving license. And you should have some money for rent, deposit, and fuel fee.

The procedure of rent-a-car registration is very simple and fast – you get keys from the car and freedom of movement in the new country after spending half an hour in a rent agency.

Rent a car abroad: why hire a car?

Simple registration is not the only advantage. Let’s consider what are the pros of renting a car:

    • Freedom of movement without depending on other people’s time and routines;
    • No hustle and bustle and crowds of people near the main attractions — because you can choose a time when there are fewer tourists.
    • A new country becomes closer to you as if you are a part of its life rather than a black sheep in tour buses.
    • You can visit several neighbouring countries all under the same visa regime in one trip.
    • You can choose people to be with you who are pleasant and interesting to you. The number of misunderstandings and conflicts is reduced. And for people who prefer solitude and do not like the noise and crowds — this is probably the most comfortable way to travel.

Disadvantages of renting a car abroad

Of course, this method of traveling to a new country has some disadvantages as well as everything in this life:

    • If the driver is alone — he has to concentrate on the road, watch the traffic, learn the roads new and unexplored. There is no opportunity to relax and look at the scenery of the new country.
    • To feel oneself confidently at the wheel in various road situations — one must have a rather long experience of driving and a strong nervous system.
    • It is not possible to drink alcoholic beverages while driving until you get to the car park of the chosen hotel.

Some tips for drivers

It’s a good idea to check the road map of the country you are going to in advance, while you are still in your home country.

It is of course advisable to plan your route, mark the mandatory stops and upload the navigator and maps to your mobile phone or tablet. Some car rental agencies will offer you a car with an integrated GPS navigator right away – this is a useful and handy option.

Also, think about what accessories will make the trip more comfortable and easier – whether it’s your favorite music, a pillow for your neck, or a flask of water — familiar and convenient things will make the trip more comfortable and easier. It’s worth making a list of things you’ll need in advance. Have a great trip!

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