All the major hire companies are in Rome at the airports and the Termini train station. The advantage of an airport car is you don’t need to drive in the city but you do need to collect it. Four- and five-star hotels often have a service where the car is brought to you. Still you are advised to get out of town before the madness of rush hour starts; i.e., leave central Rome at 7 AM and come back in after 7 PM.
Make sure you clearly specify an automatic if that is all you drive and book early, as there are very few in a country where “good driving” is interpreted as going as fast as the road will allow. If speed is your thing, consider hiring a performance car; we have listed a provider. For a fun, fast and inexpensive drive, then why not hire the new FIAT 500? Whatever you do, get full insurance! If you don’t want to drive then get a guide to either go on the insurance or use his/her own vehicle.
Castelli Romani - 20 miles - Lakes, markets, places, food
Cerveteri - north Lazio coast, 40 miles - Etruscan tombs, food, wine
Orvieto and Umbria - 90 miles - Medieval Italy, food, wine, oil
Todi and Umbria - 110 miles - Medieval Italy, food, wine, oil
Monte Casino - 100 miles - War cemetery, the Abbey
Ovindoli and Abruzzo - 110 miles - Mountains, skiing, forests
Siena and Tuscany - 130 miles - Medieval Italy, food, wine
If you are a bit weary of driving in Italy but want the freedom of a hire car then why not ask your tour guide to drive for you. Name them as a second driver so you can take the wheel for the nice sections of the drive.
Car hire starts at 25 Euro per day but that does not include full insurance, which often doubles the price. A good thumb rule is 50 Euro for the first day and 30 Euro every class of car up and/or day of rent thereafter. Petrol is not cheap in Italy; so, if you are planning on doing more than 500 miles, then opt for a diesel. Air con is a must. A Ferrari will set you back a cool 1600 Euro upwards- a day, that is.