Car rental on Naxos Greece

by Kelly

Heard you might need to rent a car while visiting Naxos? You are right, it is a big island and hiring a car is the easiest way to get around. Don’t be concerned we have searched for the best option and can tell you first hand what to do! (Please note we did not work with this company, we paid full price and all opinions are our own) This is the best car rental on Naxos Greece.

Do I really need to rent a car to get around Naxos?

You don’t absolutely have to rent a car. There is a bus service which is pretty good and goes almost everywhere. Having said that there are some places you will not be able to visit, long walks to get from the bus stop to where you want to go and waiting around for the bus to arrive and depart. If you are only stay a couple of nights and don’t want to explore further than the Chora and Agios Prokopios beach then you don’t need one. Use the bus you will be fine. However if you are looking to really see Naxos, visit the villages, mountains, go hiking, visit more remote beaches, you will definitely need one. It is really, really nice to have a car to get in to. It is shade, air conditioning and being able to carry your bags around with ease. We are normally on scooters so this was such a pleasant change for us.

Can I rent a scooter or ATV?

Yes you can, however it will depend on your drivers licence. You will only be able to rent a 50cc scooter without a proper motorbike licence. You also need an international drivers licence in most cases. Read my blog here about renting vehicles in Greece in 2022! There is a lot of confusion about this right now. Anyway, a 50cc scooter is not enough for the mountains and the ATVs are fine but you will be sitting out in the open sun and heat. If you have luggage you will not be able to fit it all on the ATV to move around and they fall under the same licencing as the scooters. For a car you need an International drivers licence if you are from particular countries (check out my blog here) and if not just your regular drivers licence is fine.

What car company should I go with?

We searched high and low, scouring reviews of basically every car rental company on Naxos. Walking the streets stopping off to ask questions and get a feel for the people. Super careful about who we rent through, we don’t want any problems with the vehicle while we have it or while returning.

Eventually we decided to go with Smile Car Rentals. Reading every review, we called them and arranged a car to be dropped off in Agios Prokopios at our hotel. They were on time and the car was clean and in good condition. They even gave us a better model than we had asked for.

You will need to have your licences handy for them to note down on the paper work and also to pay for the car then. We booked it for 2 days and it was fantastic to be able to go where ever and whenever we wanted.

UPDATE- we have seen on google reviews there are some negative reviews that were not there when we hired our car. They are mostly around reservation issues. Of course things can change and fluctuate with time but they were great when we hired and we had no problem with the car or their service. (we were not working with the company and we paid full price for our car). We have since started renting our cars through this online car rental. It has been excellent and we haven’t had any problems at all.

How much does it cost to rent a car on Naxos?

We paid 30 euro per day (May 2022) which is a great price. The car was a Fiat Panda and it was in excellent condition. It is a small car and that is exactly what you want. The roads are tiny and tight! You will barely squeeze through some with another car approaching and parking can be busy too. A small car is a good car!

Should I rent auto or manual?

Our car was a manual, you can pay more for automatic. If I was driving I would have as we are Australian and the cars are on the wrong side of the road and car for us. So to make it easier I would do auto, but Mike is very confident in driving and in particular driving in overseas situations. He has driven everything from scooters and cars to tuk tuks. He was confident enough to drive on the wrong side of the car, the road and in a manual. Up to you how you feel about it!

Renting a car for the first time, any tips?

Our number 1 rules is to ALWAYS take photos of every tiny bit of the car. We take literally every single angle we can, making sure to note any scratches, marks, dents, scrapes. We do this immediately as they deliver the car. Let them see you do it so they know that you are the type of person to be particular about caring for the car and that you will know what marks were there. There is nothing worse than coming out of a shop and noticing a scratch and not knowing if it is new or was there originally. With the photos you can easily check to make sure you didn’t do it. It is peace of mind while you have the vehicle and insurance against any fake scratch or dent claims that could be tried on you. The photos below are about half of what we took.

Did you have any problems renting a car on Naxos?

We had no problems at all with Smile Car Rental. They were very accommodating, just the usual rule to refill the fuel to where it is when you get it. Drop off at the end was very simple. We were worried when leaving on the ferry as they told us to drop it at the port area with the keys in it. As we were getting our things out one of their employees came over, checked the car, had a chat and took the keys. We were glad that we handed it over to someone rather than just leaving it but I think they are pretty well known in the area so are probably fine.

The whole service was easy and simple. We really try to take very good care of the vehicles we rent as we don’t want any problems. This was a great example of renting from a well organised company, we definitely recommend using them.

We loved our time in Naxos, it was one of the best islands we visited! Read all about how to have the best trip on our blog here.

UPDATE-Try renting through this car rental platform. We have started using it and love the convenience and ease that we expereinced so far.

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