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Car Rental in Austria

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Austria

Car Rental in Austria: a Perfect Mixture of European Civilization and Wilderness

Featuring some of the most stunning mountain peaks, summer and winter sports in Austria are a real treat - not least because the mountain ski and hiking paths are speckled with chalets and resorts, offering hikers anything from a rugged meal and local beer to full-on spa treatment. The Austrian Alps are a perfect mixture of European civilization and wilderness. Book your rental car today to make sure you get the best of your Austrian experience, from the funky urban to rugged mountains.

Austrian summers are fairly short, running from mid-June to September, and are typically comfortable, with temperatures rarely exceeding 35 degrees Celsius. Winter athletes will want to visit between November and April. While prices are lower during the shoulder seasons, you may find that restaurants and other tourist destinations are not open between the end of April and mid-June.

German is the official language of Austria; English is widely spoken in tourist areas and by the younger generations, and Italian is also widely spoken along the border.

Austria lies in the Central European Time Zone, UTC+1.

The currency, as in most of the European Union, is the Euro, and credit cards are accepted at most restaurants and shops. ATMs are also widely available. You will want to have cash on hand for visits to smaller grocery stores, bakeries, and butcheries.

The major metropolitan area of Austria is Vienna, located in the lowlands of an otherwise very mountainous country. It takes about 3 hours to drive from Vienna to Salzburg and another 2 hours to drive to Innsbruck, via Germany. Double check regulations on driving across these generally unregulated national borders with your rental agency before you depart.

Automobile hire is available in all the major cities and towns of Austria, though you are likely to find the best deals in major metropolitan centers, such as Vienna, Graz, Innsbruck, Salzburg, Klagenfurt, and Linz.

Visa Regulations

As a member of the Schengen Agreement, Austria accepts visitors visa-free from countries such as the EU, Switzerland, New Zealand, and Australia. Citizens of the other countries will be required to apply for a visa before they arrive and are permitted to stay for up to three months.

Driving in Austria

Although a relatively small European country, the Alps make many of Austria’s most beautiful locations fairly remote. While public transportation infrastructure is quite good, it simply will not provide you the spontaneity and convenience that make a visit to this gorgeous country unforgettable. Book your rental car today!

Right-Hand Driving

  • As in the rest of continental Europe, traffic proceeds on the right-hand side of the road.

Speed Limits

  • In towns: 50 km/h (30 mph)
  • On highways: 100 km/h (60 mph)
  • On the Autobahn: 103 km/h (65 mph)

Other Regulations

  • Parking in all major metropolitan areas will be regulated by time and fee. Take advantage of parking garages in major cities, such as Vienna, to avoid the hassle of street parking.
  • An international driver’s permit is required to rent and drive in Austria.
  • All of the major highways of Austria require that your car is outfitted with a vignette, the cost of which varies depending on the length of time for which you purchase it. Ask your rental company if they can supply a vignette for you.
  • Some tunnels and mountain passes are also tolled, often costing between $10 and $16 and payable at toll booths.

Other Tips

  • Winter driving can be very precarious in the mountains, as weather conditions can change suddenly, and other travellers may be few and far between. Fill your gas tank whenever possible, and carry sufficient warm clothing, food, and water.
  • On mountain roads, shift into a lower gear when you are descending in order to prevent undue wear and tear - and the potential failure - of your brakes.

Cheap Car Rental in Austria

Automobile hire in Austria typically starts at around $29 a day, with lower prices available during the off-season, particularly if you pick up you car at an airport. Here are some of the best deals in Austria:

  • Suzuki Swift or similar (mini class) – $24/day
  • Nissan Micra or similar (economy class) - $25/day
  • Hyundai I30 or similar (compact class) - $28/day
  • Skoda Fabia or similar (economy class) - $29/day
  • Renault Fluence or similar (intermediate class) - $30/day

Note that prices vary depending on the availability of each specific car and the season in which you rent. For the most accurate offers, use the search bar above.

Tips for Renting a Car Inexpensively in Austria

Cars are available for as low as $19 a day during the off-season in Austria, such as in January and February. Travelling outside of tourist seasons is the best way to keep your costs low, as booking well in advance typically means you’ll still be paying between $29 and $35 per daily rental.

Extend your rental period by a week or more to save up to $11 a day!

Picking up your car at any of Austria’s major airports is the surest way to travel cheaply throughout the country. MegaDrive, located at the Vienna International Airport and the Klagenfurt Airport, is an exceptionally inexpensive rental agency.

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