Groningen

By | 16th January 2018

Should you rent a car in Groningen?

Do you need a car in Groningen > Should you rent a car in Groningen Netherlands > Groningen ( GRQ )
Car: Do you need a car in 3? No car: Is it worth hiring a car in 3? Slider: Should you rent a car in 3? Should you rent a car in 3?

Groningen car hire quick facts

Cheapest rate for one week Based on cheapest economy car hire deal with no added extras. [full notes - basic costs]

135

 #151/300

  • Price alone isn't the only factor in determining whether or not it's worth hiring a car in Groningen but clearly it's an important one. See our "why" section for more figures.
How much should I expect to pay in the peak season? Based on cheapest deal during the summer holiday season. (Unless otherwise noted) [full notes - seasonal variations]

 €

X

 300/300

  • During the peak holiday season, public transport is often better value, as many train and bus fares are fixed throughout the year. See our "whynot" section for more suggestions.
Free parking score Based on the number of hotels which offer free parking.Total 98 - of which 44 have free parking. [full notes - parking]

45

%

144/300

  • During the peak holiday season, public transport is often better value, as many train and bus fares are fixed throughout the year. See our "whynot" section for more suggestions.

Groningen public transport quick facts

"Top trumps" train score

Higher scores go to the systems which take you to the most amazing places.

35%

#144/300

  • [full notes - top trumps trains]
  • A good rail system doesn't mean you shouldn't hire a car, but it often means you have a decent range of options.

Overall public transport score {coming shortly}

This is a more practical rating based on bus and rail travel.

--%

#---/300

  • [full notes - overall transit] buses | trams | metro | local & regional rail | national rail
  • Is public transport in Groningen good value, or is it worth hiring a car just because it is cheaper overall?

Walking and Cycling Overview

Active travel score {coming shortly}

This overall rating considers walking and cycling in and around Groningen

--%

#---/300

Need, worth & should!

Whether you have come here asking "do I need a car in Groningen", "is it worth hiring a car in Groningen", or whether or not you "should" hire a car here, these are all slight variations on a similar theme:

Do you need a car in Groningen?

This is essentially based on whether or not public transport and other "non car" options are good enough to get around and beyond the city.

Is it worth hiring a car in Groningen?

Is car hire good value, especially during the peak season? How does this compare with transit fares?

Should you rent a car in Groningen?

Weighing up the above questions, if you are here for the first time AND asking about hiring a car, is it a good idea?

Do you need a car in Groningen? Introduction

When someone asks "Do you need a car in Groningen?", this often breaks down to two key questions:

  1. Can you actually get around using public transport, or is a car all but essential?
  2. Is it worth hiring a car in Groningen? Is it good value for money, compared with non-car options?

Over the next few sections, we wil look at the pros and cons of driving in Groningen as a tourist, and ultimately weigh these up, so we can answer the key question of Should you rent a car in Groningen?

Why? Why not? Ratings Comments


The key question is – given how many bicycles there are here, would you have any reason to hire a car in Groningen?

Why should you rent a car in Groningen?

What are the main reasons for hiring a car here? Do you just want to drive locally? Do you want to go further afield, or should you even look at taking a road trip?

In terms of factors like the cost of the hire itself, fuel costs, road tolls and parking charges, is it worth hiring a car in Groningen?


  • Because you can – it is a great myth that the sheer number of bikes in Dutch cities make it impossible or very difficult to drive a car. If you want to pick up a hire car at Groningen airport, it’s very easy to do so.
  • There are no motorway tolls in the Netherlands.
  • If you want to go to places which are easily accessible by car, you shouldn’t have any major problems.
  • Less congestion – generally, Dutch roads will be prone to some slow moving traffic during rush hour just like anywhere else. However, you shouldn’t experience the kind of gridlock that some other cities have at certain times of day.
  • Coast and villages – the rail and bus network will get you between the major towns, but it’s not so good for the smaller places.

Why not? Visiting Groningen without a car

What is public transport like in Groningen? What about local conditions for walking or cycling? Can you rely on public transport and maybe a few taxis for most or all of your trip? Are there some times of year when it's easier to get by without a car than others? When should you rent a car in Groningen?


  • Bicycle heaven – this city is the world’s greatest cycling utopia. It is easy to hire bicycles at numerous different locations, including the main railway station.
  • Bus and train – the Dutch cycling infrastructure network makes it very easy to do a journey of 10 to 15 miles within an hour and barely even having to think about it.
  • Even if you don’t feel like cycling further, there is a good network of bus routes which feeds into Groningen station, and a reasonable network of local rail services.
  • Direct rail connections – the range of flights to Groningen airport is restricted to a very small handful of European destinations. The chances are that you will arrive from either Amsterdam or Schiphol airport by rail. Allow about 2 1/2 hours for this.
  • Museum – the Groningen Museum is quite a notable cultural centre in its own right. It is situated directly across the railway station anyway.

Should you rent a car in Groningen? – The verdict:

Groningen is the world’s cycling capital, and that might make it worthy of a visit for that reason alone, although the difference between Dutch attitudes to cycling and those in just about anywhere else is already clear to see the moment you set foot in the Netherlands.

Yet, just as with any other Dutch city, including Amsterdam or Rotterdam, just because cycling is so easy doesn’t mean that driving is difficult, it just really isn’t worth the expense.

Verdict – no

Ratings

Our slider ratings range from 0 (it isn't even possible to hire a car, e.g. Hong Kong) through to 10 (you really must rent a car here, e.g. Phoenix, Tampa). However, most places are somewhere inbetween these extremes, and this is where it gets more interesting! Further ratings breakdowns, including a much more detailed public transport rating, are currently being added. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below.


Would you hire a car in Groningen?

Have you driven in Groningen? Do you agree with our advice on whether or not it's worth hiring a car in Groningen?

Do you need a car in Groningen? For some or all of the time? 

Tell us what you think using the comments section below:


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *