Car Hire in PortugalWhere to pick up
Popular car rental cities in Portugal
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Portugal: An Award-Winning Destination
Few places in the world boast such a diversity of physical geography than Portugal. From the snowy peaks in the north to the many white-sand beaches, it’s no wonder that the country was named the world’s best destination at the 2017 World Travel Awards. The best way to see the country is to hire a car, which can take you from slope to sand in the same day.
The two main cities of Porto and Lisbon are famed for their ancient architecture – the old center of Porto is a World Heritage Site – as well as their delicious food and their modern, vibrant culture and nightlife.
When to Go
Portugal is a popular summer destination, with the high season around the time of the school summer vacations in the USA. This is certainly a great time to visit, with the sea at its warmest and the cities buzzing at night.
After the capital Lisbon, Porto is the second biggest city of Portugal, from which both Portugal and its fortified wine gets their name. This part of the country offers a Mediterranean climate in the summer, and a mild and rainy winter. The end of winter and beginning of spring is a prime time to visit.
For those who want to avoid the summer peak season, visiting at other times has its own charm. During the mild, damp month of February, visitors can take in the pink blossoms of almond groves in full bloom, imbibe some port wine while taking in distant mountain peaks, or take a walk on a deserted beach. All of these can be experienced by driving no more than 4 hours.
Portuguese is the native language, but the locals are often proficient in English, so communication difficulties don’t arise too frequently. The currency is the euro and exchanging other major currencies should not pose any problems.
Enjoy Great Car Deals
Should visitors spend time bussing from destination to destination, or rent a car? Vehicle rental is cheap all year, and cheaper still during the less busy months of the year. In February, prices to hire an automobile for the week start at less than $2 per day. Find some examples of company deals listed here:
- Volkswagen Up or similar (mini class) – $2/day
- Toyota Yaris or similar (economy class) – $3/day
- Ford Focus or similar (compact class) – $4/day
- Renault Captur Tce or similar (intermediate class) – $8/day
- Opel Insignia or similar (standard class) – $19/day
The prices listed above are a reflection of only a small selection of cars. These prices will not remain the same during the height of summer, the time which sees the most visitors and tourists to Portugal. Furthermore, prices will change depending on the pick-up and drop-off locations. Make use of the features of the search engine to find your favorite options.
Portugal is inviting to tourists and has an economy that really caters to visitors. Renting a vehicle in most Portuguese cities is cheap, with prices starting as low as $14 per day even in the peak tourist season. However, this season only lasts for two to three months, with the prices listed above being normal for the remainder of the year. From Lisbon Airport, cheap car hire in Portugal is provided by local companies such as Turisprime, ÜDrive Rent a Car, and Centauro.
Airports are the cheapest options for pick-up locations. Some companies will meet customers to lead them to the counter or provide transport to the pick-up location. Car hire in Portugal from outside of the airport will usually result in higher prices.
Also, cities on the mainland will have cheaper prices than locations in the archipelagoes, with a price difference averaging $21. The best prices listed are weekly rentals with the same pick-up and drop-off location.
Basic Rules and Tips for Driving in Portugal
- Drive on the right side of the road.
- Whether sitting in the front or rear of the vehicle, wear the seat belt.
- The minimum age for driving is 17, though for hiring an automobile it is 21. Drivers are expected to hold an EU driver’s license, or to hold an International Driver’s Permit.
- It is mandatory to have and use a red triangle and fluorescent yellow jacket in the case that the driver must make repairs while on the road.
- Drivers in Portugal can be reckless in comparison to some other countries. Drive carefully.
- If someone helps with parking and can be assumed to ‘watch’ the car while you are away, tipping them €0.50 is acceptable. Transponders are recommended if you plan to make use of the toll roads, as these are common and convenient for traveling between major cities. This transponder can be included with your rental, for a deposit which will be refunded if unused. The cash limit can be topped up at many supermarkets.