By | 16th January 2018

Do you need a car in Sofia?

Do you need a car in Sofia > Should you rent a car in Sofia Bulgaria > Sofia ( SOF )

Do you need a car in Sofia? Introduction

Why? Why not? Ratings Comments


James says - a few trip notes:

I’ve just got back from Sofia, and I really loved this city – so much in fact that I hardly left town, other than to take the amazing mountain railway to Bansko.

The Bulgarian capital has a good network of public transport options, including a newly developed underground system to complement the well-established trams.

Why should you rent a car in Sofia?

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 Sofia?

Sofia Car hire summary

Overall drive rating

Based on a weighted score across all cost and quality factors. [Full notes - drive rating]



Cheapest rate for one week

Based on cheapest economy car hire deal with no added extras. [full notes - basic costs]




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]




Free parking score

Total 147 - of which 30 have free parking. [full notes - parking]



  • A hire car might still be useful, especially for travelling into the mountains at your own pace, but it is certainly far from essential.

Why not? Visiting Sofia without a car

Why? Why not? Ratings Comments

Sofia public transport quick facts

Train score



Water travel score


Overall public transport score



Walking and Cycling Overview

Active travel score

This overall rating considers walking and cycling in and around Sofia. 


  • Sofia also offers good access to a range of parks and national parks which are all sufficiently close to the city centre that you can get there easily by bus, and return back to your hotel within the same day. In fact, Sofia is rare amongst European capitals in having ski facilities literally within its boundaries.

Looking further afield, Bulgaria offers some great scenic train rides, including the world-famous line to Bansko, which is also another popular skiing area.

Do you need a car in Sofia? No!


Car rental in - Sofia Need v worth & should!

Do you need a car in Sofia?

  • Based on comparison with transit and walking/cycling?

Is it worth hiring a car in Sofia?

  • Based on value for money?

Should you rent a car in Sofia?

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

Who is travelling?

Is it worth renting a car in Sofia if I am a solo / budget traveller?

What about for 2 people travelling together?

What about for families?


Where are you staying?

Do you need a car in Sofia if we are staying in the city centre / main resort area?

What if we are staying on the edge of the urban area?

What if we are staying in a rural area?


What is your attitude towards driving?

Should I hire a car in Sofia if I prefer not to drive?

What if we are easy either way?

What if I prefer to drive?



What is our final score for Sofia on the Carornocar scale?


Go back up to:
Why? Why not? Ratings Comments

Would you hire a car in Sofia?

Have you driven in Sofia? Do you agree with our advice on whether or not it's worth hiring a car in Sofia?
Tell us what you think using the comments section below:

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