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The majestic Grand Canal. Gondolas drifting serenely along waterways. Pigeons fluttering above piazzas. The instantly iconic Venice is somewhere to be explored by boat and not on four wheels. Rent a car, however, to explore the cities and regions beyond the enchanting historic center of the Queen of the Adriatic. Orbitz are here to help you do just that.

Renting a Car in Venice: What You Need to know

Renting a car abroad can be a headache if you don’t do it the easiest way. Orbitz are here to make everything simpler, with a guide to all of your Venice car rental questions.

Can you drive in Venice?

Yes and no – the famous part of Venice, the historic center, would be tricky to navigate by rental car. The iconic archipelago is for pedestrians and gondolas only.

However, Venice extends beyond there and you can drive around the part of the city known as Terraferma on the other side of the Ponte della Libertà.

Where can I pick up a rental car in Venice?

In the historic center, there are a number of rental outlets by the ferry terminals at the edge of Ponte della Libertà. If you’re arriving by boat, you can use these to drive to mainland Italy.

On the other side of the bridge there are further car rental options by Mestre Station or by Marco Polo Airport.

Which companies rent cars in Venice?

There’s a plethora of choices for anyone wishing to rent a car in Venice. Hertz, Sixt, Dollar, Budget, Advantage, Thrifty and Europcar are just a few of the many options.

What’s the minimum age for renting a car in Venice?

In Italy you can rent a car from as young as 18 if you’ve held your license for a year. Some companies may have a higher minimum age limit, while many will charge a younger driver surcharge for anyone under 25.

What do the car rental company need from me?

Make sure you pack your driving license, your credit card and, if you’re visiting from the US, an International Driving Permit.

Explore Venice: Beyond the Famous Canals

Use your rental car in Venice as a way to explore other parts of northeast Italy. Stopping in Venice’s historic center is compulsory, but there are further delights in the wider region. We’ve highlighted some of the best spots below.

Centro Storico

There’s no denying the wonder of Venice’s historic center. Every building and square here seems to ooze history, from the iconic Piazza San Marco to the opera house at Campo San Polo. Drifting through the waterways on a gondola is an essential experience and, if you get the chance, so is donning a mask to join in one of the city’s festivals.


Charming Trieste is quieter and less of a showstopper than Venice, but it’s an enchanting place to explore. At just two hours from Venice, you can make a day trip here and witness the majesty of the Piazza dell Unità d’Italia. Wander around the university town, unencumbered by other tourists, pausing only to drink some of the best espressos in Italy.


Fair Verona is most famous, perhaps, as the setting for Romeo and Juliet. The idyllic town may have lots of Shakespearean attractions, but even if you aren’t a fan of the bard, it’s utterly magical. Opera festivals, a glistening river winding through the center, and elegant formal gardens from the Renaissance era make this well worth the trip.