Where to pick up rental car in Rome

Old Jul 9th, 2002, 07:04 AM
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Where to pick up rental car in Rome

After spending four days in Rome, four of us are heading up to Tuscany for a week. Where should we pick up our rental car? (We are renting with autoeurope.) I don't see any reason to go all the way out to the airport. Any ideas on a location that might allow us easy access to the autostrada heading to Siena?
Old Jul 9th, 2002, 08:21 AM
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Melissa: We did the same thing in May and picked the car up at Termini. There are several agencies located in the same building and their cars are just outside. We too rented through AutoEurope and our car was through EuropeCar. You didn't say which company, i.e. Hertz, Avis, etc. you will be using. That might make a difference.

Some years ago we picked up a car from Hertz near Borghese Gardens and if I remember correctly it was not as easy or convenient as Termini.

Old Jul 9th, 2002, 08:53 AM
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There are several car rental places just a few blocks from the Spanish Steps, near the park. It is fairly easy to get out of the city from here, and pick up the Autostrada to Tuscany. Just make sure you get correct directions from the rental office. We were given bad directions at Europocar, which caused us to loose about an hour trying to leave the city! In all fairness, once we contacted them back home, they were very apologetic, and refunded some of our rental fee.
Old Jul 9th, 2002, 09:58 AM
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Here's another vote for the Termini. Have the cab driver drop you at the main entrance. Then, when inside, walk to the left. The car rental agencies are all along the Via Marsala side of the station.

AutoEurope booked us the Avis. I'll never forget the cute young man named Francesco at Avis who upgraded our car at no charge because he was concerned about the amount of luggage we had. He gave us perfect directions to exit the city, connecting to the GRA (the ring road around Roma) and then onto the A1 Autostrade north toward Tuscany.

Old Jul 9th, 2002, 11:07 AM
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Thank you all for the advice. We are using autoeurope to rent from Hertz. Looks like Termini might be the way to go. I personally don't want to do the driving in Rome, but I am travelling with a couple of adventurous people who I think will be up to the task Thanks.
Old Jul 9th, 2002, 06:14 PM
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We did just the reverse about 2 weeks ago...went from Siena to Termini. Our hotel was only about 4 blocks from there. We drove in on a Sunday morning so traffic was light (I would suggest driving out on a Sunday if possible). Get a good map and go for it. We only got lost for about 10 min when we actually got into Rome (not too bad). Just be prepared for streets to change names - perhaps several times.
Old Jul 9th, 2002, 08:06 PM
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We rented at the Termini through AutoEurope and drove north to Tuscany. Driving through the city was surprisingly easy - the problem was that the signage sucks. We saw what looked like onramps to freeways a number of times but they were not marked with a number or mention of direction or city names along the route. We happened to make a lucky guess and get on the correct highway. I think if you get very detailed directions at the rental counter you should not have much problem.
Old Jul 10th, 2002, 07:24 AM
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Thinking "outside the box," you may want to consider taking the train to Orvieto and picking up your car there. Orvieto is just off the autostrada, so you could set out for Tuscany from Orvieto and avoid the Rome traffic situation. Orvieto is worth some time to explore or even an overnight. You can walk from the station to the AutoEurope office in Orvieto if the contract is through Avis, as ours was.

Buon viaggio
Old Jul 10th, 2002, 10:02 AM
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Like you, I was very nervous about 'driving in Rome'.. However, the directions from the Termini to exit the city draw you away from the city rather quickly to less and less congested streets. That's why I like the Termini location as you don't have to traverse the city to exit it. We also, left town on a Saturday morn, so maybe that helped with traffic.

Yes, it took about 20 minutes to reach the ring road and you have to watch for your sign posts, but this quickly became suburban two-lane streets that were not at all intimidating.

If you are still nervous, the train to Orvieto suggestion is something many people do and good to consider. Either way, stop in Orvieto for a visit as it's a wonderful town. Be sure to find the funiculare so you don't have to walk up hill to the center of town.

As to driving in Italy, much to our surprise, we found the autostrade a dream. You can stay to the right and don't have to go high speeds. The quality of the road is excellent. Where we had our problems with in the medieval hilltowns. Got stuck on some VERY narrow one-way streets. Study the signs so you know "senso unico" which means one-way and also the symbol for pedestrian only ways.

Old Jul 10th, 2002, 04:39 PM
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Just a reminder-check to see when and if the auto rental office will be open-we rented a car in Bolzano and Bari and the office had limited hours and closed in the middle of the day-so be sure to check-I don't think even Termini is open 24/7 for auto rental.
Old Jul 10th, 2002, 08:03 PM
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Don't be scared of driving in Italy. We drove from Florence, through Tuscany, up by Carrara to Milan.
In the big cities, take it easy, remember people don't want sudden moves or sudden stops. Those mosquitos - no, scooters - that buzz around you expect you to keep moving the same as you are. No sudden stops or turns!
To get through the cities - plan your route ahead. Pick some landmarks (have we seen the church yet?). Have the person beside you navigate; appreciate warnings like - "no, that's a red light for them".
MY impression of Europe is that everyone is in a hurry, but they don't have the road rage of North AMericans. They are more stoic about missing a light, or having someone going a little slow in their lane. All they want is a little consideration in return - that guy flashing his light or tailgating isn't being rude, he's just saying "when you have the room to squeeze over, I'd like to pass, per favore..."
Old Jul 11th, 2002, 01:41 AM
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I would second the Termini too. Relatively easy to get out of Rome and a central enough place that you should have no problem finding. On your way up to Tuscany, a detour to Assisi is highly recommended. I find it more charming and romantic than most of the Tuscan hill towns that I have been to. Also a reminder that most rentals are stick shift and you will need to reserve an automatic ahead of time.
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