Guide to Driving In Italy - Drive Safe in Italy

With our Drive Smart guide you're fully prepared to hire a car in Italy and stay safe on unfamiliar roads.


50 kph

More info  


90 kph

More info  

motorway speed limit

130 kph

speed limit
More info  

Drink Drive Limit


drink and drive limit
More info  
You drive in Italy on the Right side  
The currency in Italy is EUR €
To rent a car is  21 years and to drive is 18 years of age
Current fuel price in Italy 1.48 €/Ltr

Driving Laws in Italy

Driving in Italy
Pocket guide to driving in Italy
Driving in Italy
SPEED: (kph)
Speed limit in Italy
Rush hour in Italy
Speed cameras in Italy
Fuel prices in Italy
Drive RIGHT in Italy
Min driving age in Italy
Blood alcohol content
Drink driving in Italy
Emergency phone number in Italy
Driving documents in Italy
Hands free only
Mobile phone driving in Italy
Seat belt in Italy
See here for current child seats law in Italy

Are there any special requirements for driving or hiring a car in Italy?

Driving is on the right. Drivers tend to be aggressive in Italy so defensive driving is advised, look out for tailgating (cars on your bumper/fender) and crazy overtaking. Having a passenger or GPS system to help you navigate while you concentrate on driving is helpful. Watch out for the buses only lanes. On the autostrada (motorway) dipped headlights must be used. Entry and exit roads on the autostrada are very narrow so be sure to slow right down.
  • The centre of these three lane roads is for passing. Passing is on the left. 
  • Country roads are often not in good condition and are best avoided, especially in the south and in the alps. 

Rules of the road

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Emergency Services Numbers

Police Police: 112

Police Fire: 112

Police Ambulance: 112


Fuel Prices in Italy by Month

Parking Information

Parking regulations

Parking Disc Italy
Parking regulations
Parking is known as Parcheggio. It is best to park outside the walls of the main villages as the roads inside can be very narrow. If you find a parking lot it is usually a good idea to just park as a lot of time can be wasted looking for a better spot. You can only park in the direction of travel unless it's a one way street in which case you can park on either side of the road as long as there is a three metre gap for cars to get through.
Paid parking
Blue parking signs indicate areas in cities where you must pay. Between certain hours and often on Sundays you can park for free. Where the parking duration is restricted, you'll find blue lines on the road and signs will give you the details. Ticket payment is usually at a machine nearby.  
Enforcement of parking is done by the police and you may find you are clamped as well as fined. The cost for removal of clamps is expensive so be careful where you park. If you are causing an obstruction you may be towed away. Parking fines will set you back about 70 Euros. 
Disabled parking
In Italy, the disabled blue badge scheme is recognised but with a few provisions. You will still have to pay for parking but can park in specially designated parking spaces, labelled with a yellow wheelchair logo. If there are time restrictions they don't apply to disabled drivers. You can only park in no parking areas if it is an emergency, otherwise you will be liable to be towed away or clamped. If you use the free white lines parking you need a parking disc as there are time restrictions. This can be provided from your rental company or bought in a tobacconist. The disc can be set to show what time you arrived. 

Emergency Information

Emergency Information

Police Police: 112

Police Fire: 112

Police Ambulance: 112

The emergency number in Italy is the European standard 112 for the police, fire and ambulance

What to do in an emergency

If you break down on a motorway, you should use the emergency telephones which will give you access to a mechanic or to the emergency services if required. 
If you're involved in an accident, minor damage can be resolved between the two parties. If it is major or if someone is injured you must call the police and, if appropriate, the ambulance. You should photograph the scene and if possible, leave the vehicles in position until the police arrive. They will issue a copy of their report which needs to be given to your car hire company. 

Handy Guides

World Driving Guides

Road Signs

Handy Phrases

Autostrada - Motorway
Uscita – Exit
Entrata - Entrance
Tangenziale – Ring Road 
Strade Bianchi – Marked white on the map these are country roads
Mantenere i fari attivi – Keep your headlights on
Biglietto – Ticket
Autogrill – Motorway rest areas
Disco Orario – Parking disc
Raccordo – Ring way roads around the main cities.
Strade Statali – State roads (dual carriageways)
L'auto si è rotta - The Car broke down
Dove si trova la stazione di polizia? - Where is the police station? - 
Ho un pneumatico piatto - I have a flat tyre - 
Sono stato in un incidente - I have been in an accident -  
Dove si trova? - Where is?
Dove posso acquistare la benzina? - Where can I buy petrol? 

Italy Fuel Price History

Fuel Prices in Italy by Month
Month, YearDiesel €/ltrUnleaded €/ltr
Feb, 2021 1.36 1.48
Jan, 2021 1.33 1.46
Dec, 2020 1.30 1.42
Nov, 2020 1.26 1.39
Oct, 2020 1.26 1.39
Sep, 2020 1.27 1.40

Hiring a Car

With our Drive Smart guide you're fully prepared to hire a car in Italy and stay safe on unfamiliar roads.
Kellie Hodge
Posted by Kellie Hodge
About the Author -

Travel writer, customer service guru, Kellie knows the ins and outs of car rental and always happy to share her knowledge on our blog. Favourite country to visit: Spain.

Visitor Comments

  • 29/10/2018


    Ho ripartito" means nothing in Italian. "I have broken down" can be translated as "sono in panne" or "l'auto si è rotta
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