Pros and cons of renting car in Santorini.
Sometimes I get asked some really practical questions about visiting Santorini and the most popular question that seems to be on everyone’s mind seems to be “Should I rent a car to get the full Santorini experience?” As with all things in life, this decision has some pros and cons, so I cannot give you a definite answer, but I can share my thoughts so you could make a more informed decision! :) So here is my short list of the pros and cons of renting a car in Santorini:
PRO – You are free of any constraints and waiting for public transport. You can plan your rides yourself and you do not have to rely on bus timetables.
CON – To be honest, the bus timetables are very often aligned with the working hours of the most popular sites you could visit, so you should evaluate if you are going to plan a very individual adventure in the first place.
CON – The serpentine roads on the island are notoriously hard to navigate.
PRO – I suggest you avoid the mountain serpentine road when travelling to Oia and stick to the coastal roads – this will make your life much easier. This way you will have the chance to see some awesome sights along the way. Of course, using GPS navigation helps a lot.
CON – Parking in the bigger villages is really a pain. It is OK if you plan to stick to smaller villages, though.
CON – You really should calculate if the additional expenses are worth it. If you do not plan to explore the island, it is probably smarter to stick to public transportation or taxis.
PRO – That being said, the public transportation get a bit crowded, so you will be able to avoid it. During the busy hours, the buses might be late. However, there are ways of avoiding it, for example, you can get a taxi, especially in after the sunset – not only they will get you everywhere on time, they have amazing driving skills as well.
CON – Many people do not know this, but actually you cannot travel fully around the island. This could be the plan of some of you.
So that’s it! Do not count the pros and cons, but really concentrate on the things you want from your car rental experience. As I said, there is no one universal solution for all travellers, but in my experience, most of the people will be just fine with public transport and taxi services. Good luck with your planning and see you in Santorini soon!
Anna Sulte photographer located on Santorini, Greece.