Barcelona's main international airport - Barcelona-El Prat Airport (BCN)
, to give it it's full title is situated on the coast around 13km south west of the city, Barcelona is also served by Reus
airports, however, these are both over an hour's drive from the city centre.
Collecting your Hire Car:
On arriving at the airport, you will find the car hire desks in both Terminals 1 and 2, in Terminal 1 they are situated in the first-floor arrivals hall and behind the Aena information desk. In Terminal 2 they can be found in the arrival’s hall of Terminal 2B, and the baggage reclaim area of Terminal 2C. To collect your car from Terminal 1, just go to one of the two adjacent car parks directly behind the car hire desks. For Terminal 2, the cars are in the car park across from Terminal 2B.
You may not have considered it, but Barcelona Airport is an excellent choice for access to the ski resorts of the Pyrenees. As well as guaranteeing to offer the best inclusive car hire rates starting from 16 euros a day, Rhinocarhire.com also give you the options of a ski rack for your car plus winter driving safety features such as snow chains or winter tyres.
Here is some useful information to help you when driving with your hire car in Barcelona:
Driving in Barcelona:
- Driving Side: In Spain, including Barcelona, you drive on the right-hand side of the road.
- Speed Limits: In urban areas, the speed limit is typically 50 km/h. On main roads outside towns, it's 90 km/h, and on motorways (autopistas) and dual carriageways (autovías), it's 120 km/h.
- Seat Belts: Seat belts are mandatory for all passengers in the vehicle, both in the front and back seats.
Parking in Barcelona:
- Blue Zones (Zona Azul): These are paid parking zones in the city. You can park for a maximum of 2 to 4 hours.
- Green Zones (Zona Verde): Reserved for residents during weekdays but available for visitors on weekends.
- Parking Garages: There are several underground parking garages in the city where you can park for longer durations, but they can be pricey.
Places to Visit and Scenic Routes:
- La Rambla: A bustling street in the heart of the city known for its shops, cafes, and vibrant atmosphere.
- Sagrada Família: The iconic basilica designed by Antoni Gaudí.
- Scenic Route: Drive up to Montjuïc for panoramic views of the city or head to the coastal route for a view of the Mediterranean.
Airport Route into Barcelona City Centre:
- The primary route from the airport to the city center is the C-31, which connects to the Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes, leading you directly into the heart of Barcelona.
Driving Regulations and Practices:
- Alcohol Limit: The blood alcohol limit is 0.05%. For new drivers (those who have held a license for less than two years) and professional drivers, the limit is 0.03%.
- Roundabouts: Vehicles inside the roundabout have the right of way, but this might not always be observed, so proceed with caution.
- Road Conditions: Roads are generally in good condition. However, Barcelona's streets can be busy, especially during rush hours, and some streets in the old town can be narrow.
- There are toll roads around Barcelona, especially if you're heading towards the Costa Brava or Valencia. Ensure you have cash or a credit card handy.
- Barcelona and its surrounding areas have plenty of fuel stations. Many of them are open 24/7.
- Road signs are clear and follow international standards. They are in Spanish and Catalan, but the pictorial signs are universally recognizable.
Distance to Nearest Towns/Cities:
Emergency Telephone Number:
- The general emergency number in Spain, including Barcelona, is 112.
- Barcelona is a busy city with many pedestrians, cyclists, and scooters. Always be alert and cautious.
- It's recommended to avoid driving in the old town (Barri Gòtic) due to its narrow streets.
- Parking can be challenging in the city center, so it's advisable to book accommodation with parking or use public transport when exploring the city.
Driving in Barcelona offers the freedom to explore the city and its beautiful surroundings. However, due to the city's busy nature, it's essential to be cautious and familiarize yourself with local driving regulations and customs.