If you are an adventure lover, then this article is for you! You don’t want to miss the amazing Balkan trip ─ from the breathtaking mountains, lakes, rivers to the beautiful and blue waters of the Mediterranean sea. For that, we created this article to show you what you need to know when renting a car in the Balkans.
But first, you should be informed of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, as it is changing daily.
Renting a Car in Balkans is the Way to Go
The main reason is public transportation, which isn’t exactly extensive enough. Surely, Balkan buses and trams will take you between all major cities and even most smaller towns, but if you want to see some of the most beautiful landscapes in the Balkans, then you must rent a car, otherwise, you will miss many beautiful spots.
Check for Visa Regulations
The ten main countries that make up the Balkans are:
- Bosnia and Herzegovina,
Visa requirements tend to vary as most of them are not part of the European Union. So this means also the rules of renting a car can change regarding each country. You should check the country’s regulations beforehand.
Remember You Can’t Cross Borders Freely
You need prior permission! When renting a car in the Balkans, we suggest you contact your rental company well ahead of time to organize the cross-border better. There are restrictions on some borders – for example, many won’t allow you to drive into Kosovo, so be sure to check before you start planning your route.
Beware of Vignettes on Your Balkan Trip
Road taxes are unavoidable when traveling through the Balkans, and each country has its own specific rules. For example, if you rent a car in Bucharest, Romania, charges are relatively affordable. You can purchase it online or also at a gas station, which is more common. But if you rent a car in Albania, Bosnia, and Greece, there’s no need to pay tax.
Driving in the Balkans
The biggest safety issue when having a road trip in this region is the road size. Some roads in the Balkans are narrow, about the width of 1.5 cars. The highways, in general, are at a very good standard, you’ll make it everywhere, even if it takes a bit longer than you planned. If you book a large camper van, we suggest you check the roads out before you go.
Traffic Jams are Indeed Something Else
Getting from point A to point B might be challenging as there are many traffic jams during some specific hours, especially in the summer season on the coast. Also, remember that you’ll need to go through passport and customs control for every country you visit. It can be very fast, but also may take ages, due to many tourists.
Navigation Might not be Enough
Google Maps is necessary everywhere we go, but it must be a bit difficult in the Balkans.
Some roads might not be updated online; in that case, you might need to ask the locals to show the route to your destination.