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Why we are renting a car & driving - Are we stupid?

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We have decided to rent a car for our 2 week vacation in Italy. Here are the reasons why and thinking behind it.

Cost comparison, including all gas, parking & car rental (which we got for really cheap) it is only a $100 difference in train passes versus renting a car- very small nominal difference.

Our travel list is as follows over a two week period:
MXP Milan airport
Polenisa Parma
Florence
Rome
Siena
Bologna
Venice
Fly out MXP Milan

We chose a car because:
1) Freedom to make stops between cities. We get in at 8:30am in MXP and are going to our hotel at Polensia Parma. We cant check into our hotel until after 2pm which even with driving time leaves a few hour gap. We want to be able to stop and explore. As with driving between cities, espcially driving between Bologna and Venice.

2) Siena located on outskirts of town. We are staying at l castagno in Siena. We also plan to visit a winery or two before going to the b&b.

3) Parking we have planned out. In Florence, our hotel offers parking. In Rome, we have reserved parking by the train station which we will park for 3 days while we are in the city. Venice, we have planned to park right over the bridge. Bologna we have parking with our hotel, as with Parma and Siena.

4) We plan to purchase a good amount of wine. We are in Italy for 2 weeks, so along with our regular luggage, we will have wine we are purchasing from our wine tour in Florence and Siena. We plan to bring several bottles back with us and do not want to have to cart around a bunch of luggage while on the trains and throughout the city.

5) My husband likes to drive... and is really good at it.

6) We are getting the international driving license.

7) We have insurance - for both accidents and theft- in case someone steals some of our wine! (which we plan to cover up anyways fyi.

8) Freedom to come and go, stop and start our days as we please.

So... with wanting freedom in departure and arrival times, stoping for lunches or vineyards and having parking planned out- is it really such a bad idea to drive in Italy?

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