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Warsaw

Europe > Poland > Warsaw

See: Why rent a car in Warsaw ? | Why not? | Ratings | Summary | Comments

(All of these pages will look a lot nicer when they are tidied up later in the spring)

Your key questions for any destination:

Do I need a car in Warsaw?

Strictly speaking, there are very few travel destinations anywhere in the world where it's absolutely essential to rent a car in order to see the main points of interest.

That's why we give you loads of ratings scales from 1 to 10, rather than just yes or no answers!

  • The need question is generally answered by looking at public transport (transit) options. Is it good enough for visitors who are happy to consider using it?
  • How many public transport routes are there, and are they mainly rail or road (bus) based?
  • Is public transport fast, frequent, safe, reliable and cheap?
  • Does public transport actually take you to the places you'll probably want to see?

Is it worth hiring a car in Warsaw?

This question is usually more about value for money. For this, we look at Warsaw car hire options, and consider how rental costs compare with using transit.

How far are you likely to drive anyway, and how much might you expect to spend on fuel, road tolls, parking and any other charges. We compare Warsaw with other destinations locally and around the world.

This is obviously much more of an issue if you are planning a longer road trip than it is on a small island.

Should I rent a car in Warsaw? 

This is basically a merging of the two questions. Everything else might be about giving certain facts about the costs of car rental or using public transport in Warsaw, but answering this question is very much a matter of opinion.

If your plan is just to visit the city of Warsaw, then it’s easy enough to get around using local public transport. A hire car is probably going to be useful for heading out elsewhere beyond the city.

Please note that Carornocar.com is currently being revised and updated in preparation for the Summer 2022 (northern hemisphere) tourist season. 

We do not intent to include detailed covid information, nor do we intend to suggest hiring a car, just because public transport might still have a mask requirement. Our advice will be based on the same criteria we've always used, ie whether or not you can get a better travel experience, or at least a better value one, by choosing not to hire a car.

Quick Ratings

Price band

Warsaw is in car rental price band: 5/10 (1 = cheapest car rental location)

General comment - based on price alone, is it worth renting a car in Warsaw? 

Sometimes. Economy rental prices are average by global standards.

Volatility:

Can you expect big swings in car rental prices in Warsaw between the peak and the off peak season?

5/10 (0 = stable prices)

Driving score: 3/10

Non car score:4/10

Balance: 2

(0 = car hire not advised / 10 = rental car essential)

General comment -

 

Why? Visiting Warsaw using a hire car

Why do you need a car in Warsaw ?


  • This might well depend on the size of your group. The Polish railway network is in significant need of investment. It’s still excellent value if you’re travelling on your own or just as a couple, but if you’re travelling as a family and going to fill a car, the chances are that you’ll be better off taking that option.
  • Whilst Poland is a country perhaps best noted for its historic cities, there are also numerous national parks and other scenic areas around Warsaw which are best visited with a car.

Why not? Visiting Warsaw without a car

Why don't you need a car in Warsaw ?


  • Public transport is still high quality. You have the choice of buses, trams, metro and local trains.
  • The Polish train network is comprehensive, if a little old!

Ratings: How does Warsaw compare?

Is it worth hiring a car in Warsaw? TBC

This is based on a rough consideration of the costs of renting a car in Warsaw, and how this compares with the costs of using public transport. The answer to this varies hugely from one destination to the next, based on a wide range of factors. It's based on renting a car at the airport (TBC), and driving for an average of 2-3 hours on open roads on most days.

How does this compare if:

You are travelling:

Solo / As couple / small family / larger family / senior couple etc

Does car rental make sense on different budgets?

 

 

Do you need to hire a car in Warsaw? TBC

This is based strictly on whether or no we think it's possible to visit Warsaw (and the surrounding area) without using a car. Of the three key questions, this one is the most likely to be a "no".

Should you rent a car in Warsaw? TBC

This is a balance of all factors. Remember this is an answer to the question for people who are already asking it. That's why the answer might still be a "yes", even when public transport is good. 

See global comparisons

Hiring | Driving | Parking

Trains | Buses | Local travel

 

Car hire basics:

 

Public transportation basics:

 

Regular bus services: YES

Coach (inter-city): YES

Tram: NO

Metro: NO

Commuter Rail:

High Speed Rail:

Rail type (end stub / through / junction / hub):

 

As you start ....

Does Warsaw airport have a direct rail link?

(Yes - within terminal / adjacent / short walk) (Yes - bus transfer / other) No

 

 

 

 


Changelog

Has our advice for Warsaw car rental changed over time, or has it been pretty constant?

2017 - 6

2019 - 7

2021 - 2

Average score - 4

Notes:

 

Do you need a car in Warsaw? Since Warsaw is the natural starting point for a longer trip around Poland, especially for visitors arriving from further afield, we think a hire car is something that might be worth looking into.

Summary

Do you or don't you need a car in Warsaw ?

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