Slovakia is a beautiful European country, perfectly adapted for a road trip. It is very compact, and you will enjoy authentic small towns and villages that you can easily reach in a car. Slovakia is great for tourists who love medieval castles and mountainous routes.
You can make your trip even more enjoyable by stopping in one of the places with hot springs. There is no shortage of hotels and apartments in Slovakia, and the cuisine is very original. So if you like to explore the country via uncommon routes, it is best to travel by car.
Before you plan your trip, we encourage you to check the latest COVID-19 rules of entry to Slovakia.
How to rent a car in Slovakia?
This country has a well-developed road and transport infrastructure and many rental companies, so travelers will not experience difficulties when looking for a car.
Documents that you need to have when renting a car:
- A passport;
- A valid driver’s license;
- bank card;
A driver needs to be 21+ and 25+ for VIP autos, with a minimum of 12 month driving experience. The best option is to book a car in advance through online resources. This way you will not only save money but also get a wider choice of models.
As a rule, a car rental agreement includes basic insurance against theft and damage, for which the driver is liable under his deductible. If you want to be fully protected from additional expenses, there are several independent 3rd party providers like CarInsuRent.com that offer car hire excess insurance that reduce your liability to zero.
Autobahns and highways are paid in Slovakia. You need to pay for the time the road is used, and not for the mileage. The minimum vignette term is 10 days, and its cost is about €10.
Note that most toll roads start immediately when crossing the border – you can check it on the map. Therefore, it is recommended to buy a vignette online before visiting the country or at the first gas station. The fine for travel without a vignette in Slovakia is about €300.
Traffic regulation in Slovakia is similar to other European countries. Here are the main things to know.
- Speed mode. You should not exceed 50 km/h in settlements, 90 km/h outside settlements, and 130 km/h on autobahns.For violation of the speed limit, you will pay a fine starting from €20.
- Alcohol. It should be completely avoided while driving. The maximum allowed blood alcohol level is 0.0%. The fine starts from €230.
- Dipped headlights should be on 24/7. The fine starts from €20.
- Children under 12 years old and less than 150cm tall cannot take front seats. The fine starts from €60.
- Seat belts are mandatory for all passengers in the car. The fine for violation is €50.
- Talking on the mobile phone is forbidden while driving. You can use a mobile with a hand-free system only. The fine is €60.
- You should also have an emergency stop sign, a first aid kit, a vest with reflective elements and a spare wheel in the car.
Local police officers can ask you to pay the fine on the spot. In this case, the driver will be issued a receipt for payment. Most often, foreign drivers are fined for incorrect parking in the historic centers of cities. You can learn more about road traffic rules in Slovakia here.
Parking in Slovakia
In most Slovak cities, there are certain areas for parking. But you can use them after purchasing a parking ticket – these are available in all small shops around. Parking is especially expensive in Bratislava. Here, you have to pay when leaving a car in a parking slot from 8 am to 4 pm and use special parking cards. A one-hour card is usually €0.70. But there are also free parking options in the capital – you can find more information at www.parkovanieba.sk.
Violation of parking rules will result in car blocking and a fine of €65 or even a vehicle towing that will cost you €225.
Traveling with pets
If you travel with a pet, еhe first step is to prepare all the necessary documents for it. You will have to get a veterinary certificate of international standard. The health certificate should include an obligatory vaccination against rabies. The pet also needs to be chipped – you will have to state a chip number in the declaration when entering the country. Note there are special entry points for travelers with pets.
A thoroughly planned road trip will allow you to see all Slovakia sights that are scattered around the country. You only have to competently prepare for such a journey, book a car and observe all the road rules. It will allow you to enjoy your trip to the fullest and have a pleasant aftertaste for many months after it.
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