How to find reliable car rental in Ljubljana (+ Slovenia road trip itinerary)

Ljubljana, the fairy tale capital of Slovenia, is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe (and my personal favorite!).

It’s surrounded by lush forests and valleys, and the city itself is overflowing with stunning architecture and cute cafes by the river. What better place to rent a car of your own and explore Slovenia by yourself?

Car rental in Ljubljana is simple, easy, and affordable if you book with Discover Cars. This rental company has locations across Ljubljana and at the airport to make your experience of car rental in Ljubljana stress-free and super easy.

Read next: 20 Amazing Things to Do in Slovenia

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Car Rental in Ljubljana

I recommend checking out Discover Cars because they’re the best deal finders for rental car companies in Slovenia.

Why choose Discover Cars:

  • Discover Cars compares rates for car rental companies in Slovenia – both International and reputable local companies
  • They have 24/7 support and great reviews
  • They also offer a low rate guarantee!
  • They’re the biggest brands in car hire

Where to pick up your rental car

Renting a car in Slovenia is super easy. I always recommend booking your rental car in advance – especially if you’re traveling in the busy season (June to September).

Car rental at Ljubljana Airport is the peak of convenience. But, if you’d prefer to rent a car in Ljubljana city, you can do that, too!

Slovenia car rental

Budget for your road trip to Slovenia

Car hire in Slovenia is going to factor into your holiday budget, so here is a breakdown of your budget: what you’re going to be spending and where you’ll be spending it.

  • Accommodation: $80-100 per night for a nice apartment
  • Food: $15-25 per day for eating out (per person)
  • Car rental: $30-40 per day for a car
  • Fuel: $1.25 per litre

Facts about driving in Slovenia

Speed limits

Before you get your car rental in Ljubljana, keep in mind the speed limits in Slovenia. Slovenia uses km/h, which is something to bear in mind if you’re coming from the US or the UK and you’re used to mph.

The speed limits and rules in Slovenia are very similar to those in the UK. In the cities, the limit is always 50km/h.

When you get into the suburbs, it usually goes up to 90km/h. On the dual carriageways, it’s 110km/h. Then, on the open motorways, it’s 130km/h.

Which lane is used for driving?

In Slovenia, as in the rest of mainland Europe, cars drive on the right side of the road and drivers sit on the left side of the car.

That means, on motorways, the right-hand lane is the slow lane, and faster driving is done in the middle and left lanes.

Read next: 10 most beautiful cities in Slovenia

Toll roads

When you’re renting a car in Slovenia, remember the toll roads: Slovenia has them. All motorways and expressways in Slovenia require something called a vignette for you to be allowed to drive on them.

These vignettes cost $17 for 7 days or $34 for a month. You can buy them at any petrol station in the country. So, before you head out on the motorway in your rental car, make sure to purchase a vignette.

Road conditions

If you’re concerned about road conditions when you’re renting a car in Slovenia, don’t be! The roads in Slovenia are in great condition.

They’re well-maintained and everything is signposted clearly. It’s very difficult to get lost or confused when you’re out on the road. And even the wild and rural areas have strong, safe, sturdy roads. 

What’s it like to drive in Slovenia?

In short, it’s quite amazing! Drivers in Slovenia are very calm, respectful, and relaxed. A lot of the drivers you’ll see outside of the cities will also be tourists like yourself.

Renting a car in Slovenia is absolutely the best way to see and explore the scenery. And seeing this natural beauty from a car which can access the more quiet and hard-to-reach areas of the country is an unforgettable experience!

It’s also easy to drive in the cities, though traffic can get a little intense at times. So, if you’re planning to rent a car, Ljubljana is easy to get around. Car rental in Ljubljana couldn’t be more of a breeze.

Driving through Soca Valley

How to choose the perfect car in Slovenia

Are you going on a short trip or a long road trip?

This will definitely impact your decision when you rent a car in Ljubljana.

If you’re going to be renting a car for a few days, and taking it from town to town, you can make the economic choice and go for a small, economy car. It’ll save you money on petrol and make the cost of the rental car cheaper overall.

But, if you’re considering a long road trip for a few weeks, and you want to explore every hill and valley of this beautiful country, consider a car that’s a little bigger, stronger, and sturdier.

Something that can hold more luggage. It’s certainly worth the extra cost, especially considering how car rental in Ljubljana is very reasonable anyway.

Read next: 10 magical things to do in Lake Bled

Manual or automatic

When it comes to car rental in Ljubljana, you’ll find that most rental places have a bigger stock of manual cars. If you’re coming from the UK or Australia, this won’t be much of a shock to you.

Europeans prefer manual cars, for the most part. If you’re from the US and you can drive a manual, you definitely should. Think of it like car rental deals: you’re getting a better deal on a cheaper car with more cars to choose from.

If you can only drive automatic, though, fear not! Car rental in Ljubljana is still possible. Rental places in Slovenia do have automatic cars in their range for you to choose from.

You might just have to go with what cars they have in stock, rather than having the pick of the bunch.

Driving in the Vrsic Pass

Car rental in Slovenia

Where to rent a car

As I mentioned, there is a car rental at Ljubljana Airport. If you can fly into this particular Slovenia airport, you’ll have a super easy time getting a rental car sorted.

One-way rental fee

So, if you rent a car from one location, say Slovenia airport, and drop it off at another one like Maribor, the price is higher.

The rental fee is usually around double what you would pay for your total rental if you instead return the car to where you picked it up.

If you’re looking to save money, a rental fee of $45 per day is what you’ll expect. But if you want to drive from one part of Slovenia to another and leave the car there, your rental fee will be around $90 per day.

Read next: Glamping in Lake Bled: 5 Best Luxury Camping Sites

Costs and extra charges

Most of the costs for car rental in Ljubljana are things I’ve already covered. Automatics are more expensive than manuals. Economy cars will save you money on petrol and the overall rental charge.

And the biggest extra expense of all: one-way rental fees. These double the full expense of your car hire in Slovenia.

Then there’s your insurance, of course, which you must have and will be sorted at the rental place when you pick up your car.

And don’t forget the vignette, which you need to be allowed to drive legally on the motorways in Slovenia! Pick one up at any petrol station.

Minimum age

The minimum age for car hire Ljubljana is 18. Between the ages of 18 and 25, you may incur a young driver’s surcharge as well (which is very low).

As long as you have a legal driver’s license from your home country, and you’re 18 or older, you’re good to go!

Read next: Soca Valley: A road trip through the real-life Narnia

Documents you need for renting a car in Slovenia

Most importantly for car rental Slovenia, you need a valid driver’s license.

You’ll also need a credit card to be able to rent. Rental companies won’t accept debit cards. And, again, pick up a vignette for driving on the motorways.

Do you need a special border-crossing card to enter other countries?

It’s important to know the rules of car rental in Europe between countries. Slovenia shares a fair few borders, and each country has its own border rules.

For all of them, you’ll need to show your driver’s license and your insurance papers.

For some countries, you’ll need a cross-border card. The rules here can differ, so check with each country you plan on visiting before you go – or simply ask your car rental company.

That’s the most important thing to check before going ahead with car rental in Europe between countries.

So, when to visit Slovenia?

Slovenia is great all year round. If you love to ski, definitely visit between November and March. You’ll find lots of slopes!

Otherwise, spring (April-June) and autumn (September – October) are the best times for a road trip where you can enjoy cycling, hiking, and swimming.

It’s not too hot yet and the sun shines almost every day.

Essential packing list for visiting Slovenia

I’ve covered this in a lot of detail, breaking down everything you need for a perfect trip to Slovenia.

But the most important things you’ll definitely need for a hot, sunny place where most of your time will be spent exploring outside are quality sunglasses, sunscreen, and some tough hiking boots.

Slovenia road trip itinerary (7 days)

  • Day 1: Ljubljana
  • Day 2: Lake Bled
  • Day 3: Lake Bled & Lake Bohinj
  • Day 4: Kransjka Gora & Vrsic Pass
  • Day 5: Bovec
  • Day 6: Kobarid
  • Day 7: Drive back to Ljubljana

Day 1: Ljubljana

Fly into Ljubljana airport. You can rent a car from Sixt here, or take a train into the city and rent a car at Ljubljana Railway Station.

I definitely suggest visiting the Dragon Bridge, an incredible bridge covered in amazing carvings of dragons. There are lots of other things to do in Ljubljana, including visiting the very unique art area Metelkova and the castle.

When you’re done exploring for the day, spend the night at FORUM Apartment. This apartment has private parking – perfect for car rental! 

Day 2: Lake Bled

Make your way through the countryside to Bled. Lake Bled is the must-see natural attraction in all of Slovenia.

There are so many magical things to do in Lake Bled. Stay the night at Glamping Pibernik – Pr’ Hostar, a beautiful modern glamping hut.

Lake Bled

Day 3: Lake Bled & Lake Bohinj

Take some time to see Lake Bled again. Have a picnic, taste Bled Cake, even go wine tasting!

Then drive to Lake Bohinj, at the edge of Triglav National Park. This lake is quieter, more overgrown with wild nature, and less touristy.

Bohinj, Slovenia

Day 4: Kransjka Gora + Vrsic Pass

If you’re doing this road trip in the winter, this resort will be covered in snow and you can spend an afternoon skiing.

If not, Triglav National Park is still a must-visit thing of natural beauty.

The Vrsic Pass is the most beautiful drive in all of Slovenia. It’s also the highest road in the country. This is the reason you take a road trip!

Then, when you get to Bovec, stay at the peaceful Apartments Wojcicky in the city center with free parking – and amazing massages.

Car Rental in Ljubljana

Day 5: Bovec

Bovec itself is buried in the Julian Alps. While you’re here, spend an afternoon river rafting or try the escape room. Both are super fun!

Car Rental in Ljubljana

Day 6: Kobarid

Make your way to Kobarid, where you can stop at the Boka Waterfall, Fort Kluže, and the Outdoor Museum Ravelnik on the way.

In Kobarid, stay at Apartments Pri nas – a kind of converted stone hunting lodge complete with outdoor hot tubs and a garden that overlooks the Alps!

Car Rental in Ljubljana
Kozjak waterfall in Kobarid

Day 7: Drive back to Ljubljana

If you’re planning to save money by returning your car to where you picked it up, take one last beautiful road trip back to Ljubljana.

Car Rental in Ljubljana

Ready to book your car rental in Ljubljana?

There you have it. I hope this answers all your questions about Slovenia car rental. If not, ask me anything in the comments or send me an email. 

FAQ – Car rental Ljubljana

Is it worth hiring a car in Slovenia?

Yes, it’s worth it if you plan to explore beyond Ljubljana or venture into the countryside, where public transport is less frequent.

Can an American rent a car in Slovenia?

Absolutely, Americans can rent a car in Slovenia, usually just with their U.S. driver’s license.

How much are car rentals in Slovenia?

Prices vary, but you can expect competitive rates, especially if you book in advance and outside of peak tourist seasons.

Do you need a car in Ljubljana Slovenia?

Not really, Ljubljana is compact and walkable, and it has a good public transport system for getting around the city.

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Car rental Slovenia tips: These are my best tips for renting a car in Ljubljana, including tips on where to find the best car rental deals in Slovenia, prices and more. You'll also get a 7-day road trip itinerary with lots of great tips on what to see and where to stay. #slovenia #roadtrip #travel

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