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Rent A Car Saranda 2020 Guide (Plus Tips On Driving In Albania)
The Albanian Riviera is growing in popularity, and if you hit Google and check images of its premier tourist resort, Saranda, you’ll instantly see why.
Clear seas, white sand, and beautiful olive groves traveling down to the coast. It’s idyllic and it’s one of the best places to head in summer if you want a chilled out, authentic break, especially with all the delightful and unique hotels dotting the Albanian Riviera.
Lapped by the warm waters of the Ionian Sea, Saranda is famous for its huge bay, in the shape of a horseshoe, as well as it’s long, sweeping promenade too. Not far from the center of town you will find the ruins of a synagogue dating back to the 5th century, as well as a Christian basilica.
If you gaze up above the hill over the center of Saranda, you’ll see Lekuresi Castle, dating back to the 16th century. Saranda is a fantastic mix of beauty and nature.
Exploring in this way gives you the freedom to see what you want to see, for as long as you want to see it, whenever you want to go. You don’t have to adhere to tour times, and you can sty as long as you want! Of course, you’ll need to look into what to know when renting a car, to make sure that you get the best deals.
Luckily for you, we’re going to talk about everything Albania car rental related, and give you the best car rental tips along the way.
Hiring a car means you can venture further than just Saranda, and you can even head to the capital, Tirana! Albania has a range of different types of landscapes as you travel around, so you can check out mountain scenery, forests, lakes, and of course, those stunning beaches during the warmest summer months.
Check out our car rental guide for Saranda, and Albania as a whole.
Things You Should Know When Renting A Car In Saranda
Every single country in the world has slightly different rules of the road, as well as regulations for renting a vehicle. Whether you’re looking at budget car rental Albania or somewhere else entirely, it’s vital that you check ahead of time regarding any slight anomalies.
For instance, if you’re wondering about the answer to ‘can you drive in Albania without a license’ – the answer is no! As with any country, Albania has strict rules on licenses and the things you need to carry with you when hiring a car and traveling around. We’ll cover that in a little more detail shortly.
It’s also important to remember that driving rules change periodically too, in line with events that occur or changes to legislation. Keep up to date with the important rules you need to follow, but the best car rental companies will be able to advise you, should you have any problems or issues you need to find out about before you set off.
When Looking At Car Hire In Saranda, You Have Many Options In Terms Of Companies, So Shopping Around Is Important.
In order to drive in Albania you need to be 18 years old, however, in order to rent a car, you need to be 21 years of age. If you are under 25 years, some car rental Albania companies may charge you a ‘young driver surcharge’, which is obviously going to drive up the cost of your rental rate. Again, shop around to find out which top car hire companies charge this, and which don’t.
In general, in order to hire a car in Albania you will need:
- To be 21 years of age
- To hold a full and valid driving license from your country of origin, plus an accompanying passport
- An International Driving Permit
2020 Rental Companies Serving Saranda
The following top car rental companies currently serve Saranda:
- Euro Travel And Tours Saranda
- Enterprise Rent a Car
- Saranda Holiday Rent a Car
- Eurocar Rentals
- Budget Rent a Car
- Sipa Tours, Rent a Car
- Hertz Rent a Car
- Surprice Car Rental
- Green Motion
- Addcar Rentals
- Sicily by Car
- Oryx Car Rental
As you can see, within that list here are some large international and European top rent a car company choices, i.e. recognizable names, and some more local choices, which could work out to be cheap car hire Saranda options for you. It’s about shopping around and asking the right questions.
In terms of what is the best car rental company for you, it really comes down a personal decision, depending on your needs, your budget, the type of car you need, and your age.
For instance, Oryx Car Rental Albania will be able to offer you several different rates on different vehicles, but perhaps Sixt Albania has a deal on your dates, so doing your research could save you a tonne of travel cash!
Car Rental Saranda Tips For 2020
Aside from finding cheap car hire in Saranda, you also need to know about the hidden extras and tips which might come in useful during your visit.
Always Book Early
During the summer months, you’ll find it harder to access cheap car rental Albania prices, because Saranda is a tourist resort, and the summer months are when most visitors head to this destination.
When looking to rent a car in Saranda you need to book ahead of your visit, especially between June and mid-September in particular. You may be able to find cheap, last minute deals during the winter months, but this isn’t guaranteed, and availability might not be as wide, as if you book online before you get there.
The best car rental companies usually have a wide range of different vehicles on offer, and in order to choose the type of vehicle you really need, it’s best to think about it early on.
Check Out A Few Companies First
The best car rental company for you should fit in with your budget, and should ideally come in cheaper than you expected. You can find these deals by shopping around. For instance, Oryx Rent a Car Saranda might have a deal on one particular weekend, which means your car hire comes up much cheaper than another big name – if you don’t shop around, how are you supposed to know?
Also, remember that some countries will charge you extra for being under 25 years of age, but not all do. Shopping around will give you that information and you can make the decision on the best car rental company for your budget from there.
Always Ask About Insurance
Insurance is something you need when you hire a car, just in case. Obviously, we hope nothing goes wrong, but the mandatory types of insurance you need with your vehicle are fire insurance and third party liability insurance. Check with your car hire company that these are included.
If you want to add on other types of insurance cover, e.g. collision or theft, then that is your personal choice and will cost you extra.
Remember to always carry the car hire paperwork and insurance details with you, with your license and passport, whenever you are out driving.
Driving Outside of Saranda And One Way Rentals
It’s possible that you will hire a car in Saranda and use it to take you to the airport in Tirana. In this case, you will need to find a car hire company which will allow one-way transfers. The cost might be a little higher for dropping the vehicle off at a different office, but not all car hire companies charge more for this – again, shop around.
It’s also feasible to rent your car in Saranda and cross over into bordering countries, such as Croatia, Italy, and Montenegro. It’s unlikely that you can do a one-way international trip, however, but again, ask this question of your car hire company.
Possible Unexpected Fees
Whichever car hire company you go with, remember to ask about any additional charges that might be incurred. In particular, ask about;
- Fees for one-way trips, e .g. hire from Saranda and return to another location, such as Tirana
- Collection and returning the vehicle out of hours
- Extra driver registration charges
- Last minute cancellations
- Costs for additions, such as car seats
The Rules Of The Road When Driving In Saranda (And Albania As A Whole)
When driving in a country which is foreign to you, it’s important to familiarise yourself with the road rules beforehand. Remember, Albanian road rules change from time to time. That said, the following road rules will apply when driving not only in Saranda, but across Albania as a whole.
- Drive on the right-hand side
- All vehicles must have beam deflects on headlights – if you are hiring a car, however, this should already be installed
- If you are driving into mountain areas, you should ensure your vehicle has snow chains
- A first aid kit should be in your vehicle
- You should overtake only when necessary, with caution, and always on the left
- Give way to vehicles approaching intersections and roundabouts from the right, unless directed otherwise by signage
- Give priority to emergency vehicles with sirens or flashing lights
- Avoid the use of horns in residential areas, unless in an emergency
- All passengers should wear their seat belts
- Children are not allowed to travel in the front passenger seat if they are under 12 years
- Children under 4 years of age must be in a car seat/child restraint
- Speed limits should always be adhered to, and vary according to the type of road you are traveling on – always read speed limit signage. Generally speaking, however, motorways – 110km/h, main roads (intercity) – 90 km/h, local roads – 80km/h, and built up areas – 40km/h
- Police are very strict on speeding and other driving offenses and can give an on the spot fee of up to 5000 ALL
- Be aware that in Tirana, any cars parked in a prohibited area (marked as such will be towed away, and a charge of 4000 ALL given
- Police are very strict with drink driving, and the maximum level is 0.01% of alcohol in your blood. You will be asked to give a breath test on the spot, and your refusal to do so, you will be fined between 5000 – 20,000 ALL, with a risk of your license being suspended
- Avoid driving at night in areas which are not considered ‘main roads’. Lighting is very minimal outside of main towns and cities, and it is possible for urban areas to experience power cuts
- Petrol stations are available 24 hours per day in major towns and cities
Saranda and beyond is a fantastic area to explore by car, and the freedom to be able to head out and see things at your own leisure is something you should not pass up.
More Albania Travel Blogs For Your Trip
- Check out what there is to do, eat and more along the Albanian Riviera
- Drive along the Albanian Riviera by renting a car in Saranda
- If you have kids, these are the must see sights in Albania
- Check out Albania’s National Parks in this guide
- Ultimate list of things to do in Albania
- Explore the city of Tirana, Albania
- Book hotels along the Albanian Riviera
- Discover all there is to do in Saranda (on the Riviera)
- Don’t miss the best Albanian cuisine and drinks on your holiday.
- Pack the right items with these Albania packing tips