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Renting a Car in Bergamo – A Historical City with Something for Everyone
Bergamo is a city in northern Italy, and according to legend, Leonardo Da Vinci visited there to go to the famous water source San Pellegrino. The high walls of Bergamo’s Città Alta have also been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Bergamo has a diverse range of activities on offer and is the ideal vacation destination for art, culture and sports. The valleys of Bergamo offer a wide range of sports from skiing in the winter to cycling and hiking in the spring and summer months. On the lakes of Lombardy there is the opportunity to try out a wide range of water sports, such as windsurfing and sailing. There are some beautiful medieval buildings to visit in Bergamo such as the Accademia Carrara, which is one of the most well-known art galleries in Italy, along with the Teatro Donizetti and the Castle of Cavernago, with their spectacular architecture. Within the province of Bergamo is the village of Caravaggio, which is best known as the town from where Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio took his name.
When to Visit
To maximize on the weather in Bergamo the best time to visit is between April and November. July is the hottest month with temperatures between 80 and 90℉. Between the end of November and the beginning of April the temperature barely reaches 40℉. The months with the lowest chance of rain are January, July and October.
Easy to Get Around
There is a good public transport system in Bergamo. The city buses run every 10 minutes and the most useful line to tourists is the 1A because this bus runs along the main street Città Bass to the train station. However, renting a car will allow you the freedom to visit the villages in the surrounding areas more comfortably and at your own pace.
Car Rental Prices
When in Bergamo, the rates for renting a car start from around $9 per day and can go up to $82 per day depending on the vehicle you choose. The vehicles can be picked up from either the city center or the airport and returned back to a different place if necessary.
- Fiat Panda or similar (mini class) – $11/day
- Volkswagen Polo or similar (economy class) – $12/day
- Opel Astra or similar (compact class) – $16/day
- Audi A3 or similar (intermediate class) – $28/day
- Volkswagen Touran or similar (standard class) – $35/day
Car Rental Savings
Car rentals vary greatly in Italy and how much you pay will depend much on where you go. Some companies also offer free winter tires and special weekend packages, however, hiring a car on a weekly basis is a more economical way to hire a car if the rental period will be longer than a couple of days.
Car Hire Requirement
- A passport is required to rent a car.
- You must have had a driving license for at least 1 year and the license must be for international use.
- You must be over the age of 19 to hire a car and 18 years or over to drive a car in Italy.
- Vehicles should always be returned with a full tank of petrol otherwise usually the cost of filling up the tank plus an additional inconvenience charge will be charged to the person renting the car.
Italian Liability Insurance
As a general rule, the car hire will offer insurance with their vehicles or some kind of collision damage waiver (CDW).
You must have third party liability insurance to drive in Italy. Across Europe there is also the Green Card System (International Motor Insurance Certificate) and the Green Card and insurance certificate must be available as proof of insurance.
Tips and Regulations
- The local language is Italian, with Lombard dialects also spoken within the community.
- The currency is the Euro.
- Just like most of Europe, in Italy traffic drives on the right.
- The general age requirement for hiring a car is 25-69; additional fees will apply for people of 19-25 or 69 years old and over.
- The autostradas (motorways) charge a toll and must be paid in cash, so have some cash on you when traveling by car. The charges vary depending on where you join the motorway and where you exit off of the motorway.
- When driving between the months of November and April it is mandatory to have winter tires on your vehicle and snow chains if driving in the snow.
- Ask the car hire company for a roadside assistance service number in case of mishaps.
- Pay very close attention to parking signs and regulations, as parking in Italy is not the easiest of feats.
- In urban areas cars can only stop or park on the right-hand side of a two-way street.
- On a road with traffic driving one way, cars can park on both the right hand and left-hand side of the road as long as there is a clear 10-foot gap for vehicles to pass.
- You must carry on you at all times: proof of car insurance, proof of civil liability insurance, your passport and your full driving license. You are liable for a fine from the police if any of these documents are missing.