Car, scooter and bike hire, Santorini Island
When I go to Santorini, I ALWAYS call Eleni first! I call her from Athens on her mobile number and ask her to meet me at the port! She is always there waiting for me with a smile to take me away from the maddening crowd of people standing around in the heat...the others wondering how they will get to their hotels quickly and without trouble??? They should have called Eleni! If I had rented a taxi from the port, I would have paid the same money as it costs me to rent a car for a whole day! Call Eleni and be free!
BIKELAND is a great place to hire scooters and quad bikes. They charged me 10 Euros a day when others wanted 15 and 20 Euros for a basic scooter. Great guys and very helpful. They will even do quad bikes for 15 Euros. All are topped up with fuel and ready to go. You can even keep your rental until 8pm the day you need to return it. Please Note: YOU MUST HAVE YOUR DRIVER’S LICENCE TO RENT VEHICLES IN GREECE. Bikeland – rent from theses guys! They are located in Fira.
(Update: I rented from them again in 2010 - great folks).
Ok so we have a Smart car at home and use it every day but Koos really wanted to hire a Smartf or a day to tour Santorini. We asked at several hire firms but they had nothing for the day we wanted. Then we found Spiridakos and they had the new Smart car. The hire for it is more expensive than other cars because it is a Mercedes but we knew that. They came the next day to the hotel to pick us up and take us to the office for the car. This time there was petrol in the tank and they told us not to put more than 5 euros in as that would be enough.
Then we were away for a day exploring, or so we thought. The morning was great but about 14 in the afternoon a thick mist came down and we could not see a thing. So we (and it seemed almost everyone else) returned the car earlier than planned. Still we enjoyed trying out the new Smart car and it is bigger than the older one we have at home.
Theres quite a lot to see on Santorini - and thats as in on the island of Santorini so with the distances between each recommended site its even more so recommmended to get your own wheels to get around and maximise the time you have.
Also as you drive around you will realise there are so many beautiful photo opps in every direction that you will be wanting to stop more than is possible in public transport or on a group tour - and especially if its a bus with the usual lots of window glare or murky glass!
worth the cost I reckon!
I walked around the corner from my hotel and compared prices at a couple of places advertising car rental - and took a days rental at the tourist agency that was nearest to my hotel (as per my hotel tip) - a guy came down and met me and walked me up to the car agency office, filled in the papers and off we went to get the car. It was all quick and straight forward. At the end of the car rental the same guy came back and met me and drove me down to the ferry as okayed when we made the rental agreement - he was very happy to do this so it was an excellent use of the car and they ended up with a lot more fuel in the tank than when they had given it to me!
It was well worth having the car - being able to drive down to Oia, with stops along the way of beautiful scenery and take a few side roads, see some lovely churches back the other way and troglodyte places plus an excellent old fortress on a hill with fantastic views over the island.....
ran out of time to see what I had planned so I have to go back one day!
We found this agency by walking through the Akrotiri town.
The owner was very helpful and honest.
We rented twice from him. Once before our trip to Anafi and the second time after we got back.
Cars were new and clean. The service was great. They gave us rides to the Port 3 times without extra charge.
We were very happy with them and will rent from them in the future.
ALEFRAGIS EVAGELOS - Axion Travel - Akrotiri
Whilst the Island has quite a comprehensive public bus system hiring a quad bike seems to be a popular way of getting around. Hiring one will cost about 20 Euros a day and certainly looks a safer option than a scooter. The hire place will give you a quick crash-course (or hopefully a quick "non-crash" course) on how to use it and a road map.
No good to me though as Greek law requires that you have a driving licence in order to take one on the road. I do believe that some hirers will turn a blind-eye to the lack of a licence but if you do have an accident then you'll find that your travel insurance won't want to know you.
Looks like fun and definitely a good way to get off the beaten path :(
For the First time I reached in santorini on 5th-April-2009. This was my 1st travel to the island of Santorini where i was a new tourist. I was in a confusing state that from where to start my journey. so I tried various car rental agencies to hire me a car and a tour guide(must be English speaking), so that i can understand the island of santorini properly. I was looking for an experienced tour guide and a luxury car who could make my journey full of fun.
However I got Emver car rental where I got both private English speaking tour guide and car. After getting my call Emver deliver it's car and tour guide to santorini airport from where Our santorini vacation started.
I have no words to explain the magical island of santorini. Thanks to Mr.
Vaggelis Kyliakoudis, the owner of Emver for the enormous support.
These motor bikes were everywhere being very popular with the young and those young at heart, but not my idea of "fun & comfort". Off road on dirt tracks they would be fantastic but on a not very wide winding road they are a hazard!
Most riders showed sense and moved over as cars passed, but as the top speed is approx 15km per hour they caused some problems on the road. I did not see any accidents.
You will see them for hire throughout the towns and beach villages.
We did not intend to hire a car, however the hotel manager convinced us that it would enable us to see more of the island during our 2 day stay. She proved to be correct and suggested we hire the vehicle from 6pm so we could drive to Oia for the sunset and also have the car for most of the next day.
The manager made the arrangements and the car arrived at 6 pm, 50 Euros for 24 hours and the agent told us 10 Euros of petrol would be enough for a day's driving. Drivers Licence had to be produced, little paperwork, insurance cover included in rental except for excess gap. I had Visa insurance for the gap so he said best to pay the 50 Euros with my credit card.
Our vehicle was a Nissan Micra, a small car with plenty of room in the front if you move the seats back. It was a 4 door car, and at 6 foot 5 inches tall I was very comfortable driving it.
The car was well worth the money and enabled us to get around the island at leisure, including a great lunch beachside at Kamari Beach.
Rental company: Overall Car Rental
We rented a car for 3 days, however, this was just too long. Santorini is a small island and 2 days is more than enough to see it all by car.
We rented the car through our hotel in Fira and had the impression that prices were rather expensive compared to the other side of the island. We paid 65 eur/d with full insurance for a Nissan Micra. Roads are good, however, sometimes signs fail. But then, you won't get lost because you can always see the sea on either side of the island.
Many people rented a quad, which I think is a good and cheaper alternative. However, make sure you have enough power. We saw many quads who had difficulties getting up the caldera from the lower parts in the east.
Santorini does have a reasonable bus service serving the main areas and villages:
Fira - Oia, every 1/2 hour, takes 30 minutes and costs E1.10. Passes Imerovigli.
Fira - Kamari, every 1/2 hour, takes 15 minutes and costs E1.10.Passes through Messaria.
Fira - Perissa, every 1 to 1 1/14 hours, takes 35 minutes and costs E1.70.
Passes through Messaria, Vothonas, Pyrgos, Megalahori and Emborio. A very useful bus route.
Fira - Akrotiri, every 1 1/2 hours or so.
There are routes to other destinations, such as the airport and ferry port - Athenios. The buses to the port are not on a regular schedule, but rather are timed to coincide with ferry arrivals.
Just get on and payment will be taken during the journey.
Being a small island though it doesn't take long to reach most places - you could even walk as we did from Fira to Oia. To see several inland villages in a day though we decided to hire a car for a day for convenience and this was enough for us though with more time another day would have been better to cover the island. 3 days car hire I think you'd been seeing the same places. Most hotels can organise car hire - our did - failing that there are the tour agencies. Cost for our car was 45 euros for the day (inc 10 euros for full insurance) for a Suzuki Swift - there was a cheaper option for a smaller car. We found the driving to be fine, roads were good and other drivers not as mad as we found in Turkey. Petrol was a lot cheaper than England - we probably spent about 9 euros on fuel. Certainly an air conditioned car was more preferable than a quad which do seem very popular to get around on - I'm sure I would have sunburn driving these in the heat.
We rent a motorscooter to move around Santorini, and we were absolutely satisfied with our choice.
It is quite difficult to park in Fira, Oia and close to the beaches, but with such a small bike you can really park everywhere.
In addition, Santorini is a small island, a car would be too much.
In June, we paid 10€ per day, but I know it can be more expensive in high season.
Driving on these roads is tricky to say the least. And if on your first trip here your eyes will be everywhere but on the road. I would suggest that you ride the busses for at least 3 days before you rent a car, bike, or scooter. People, tourists mainly, die here very year in accidents, it's a sad fact. Also if you rent and don't have a intl. drivers license I've been told that your insurance is void if you have a accident. Funny how they leave that fact out when you rent.
Dear Fellow travellers.
Look forward to your stay on Santorini - a true pearl.
Rental of scooter, motorbike or car is a good idea as means of getting to see a bit more of the island.
But avoid DROSSOS Car Rentall - www.drossos.gr
He (the owner) is a dishonest rental guy. We rented a scooter from him for one day in August 2007 - and he provided a substandard scooter which also ended up breaking down towards the evening.
He refused to refund anything - but offered 5 euro worth of internet time. I did not come to Santorini to surf the net - but to explore the island which is truely a great place.
Drossos has his main shop in Ia - but if you want more choice - go to Fira and get your rental vehicle there.
Enjoy Santorini !
There are hundreds of places to hire transport all over Santorini. We went to Kamari as it was the closest town to our apartments. 1pm was too late to hire a quad so we jumped on the bus to Fira where we got a quad in the 2nd place we went to. At 30 euros a day it's cheaper than getting a scooter each and it's actually more fun! I ride a moped at home in England so I can compare.
Santorini is the simplest place to get around as you can usually see where you want to be, it's just a case of choosing a road that points to it. On the quad we were able to discuss where to go without pulling over or getting too close to each other (as we would on scooters) and it was pretty slow as quads go so we had plenty of time to make decisions. It felt safe as houses: very sturdy. Must say it struggled up the many hills but local drivers are pretty patient and will wait for a safe spot to overtake, leaving a big gap. Definitely the way to travel, I wonder how much they cost in England....