Slovakia Driving Advice and Car Hire Info

Driving in Slovakia-

Slovakia drives on the right and you can use the photo licence of any EU country to drive here for up to 6 months. Drivers from other countries need their own licence plus an international driving permit. Speed limits range from 130kmh on motorways to 90kmh on other roads and 50kmh in urban areas. Drink/drive limit is zero and by law, children under the age of 12 must not sit in the front seat of moving vehicles.

Slovakia has 43,000km of roads, 95% of which are paved.

Main roads are designated as  Motorways , prefixed ‘D’ or Expressways prefixed ‘R’ –

D1: Bratislava – Trnava – Trenčín – Považská Bystrica – Žilina, Liptovský Mikuláš – Jánovce, Prešov – Košice – Záhor -Ukraine border

D2: Kúty (CZ/SK border) – Malacky – Bratislava – Jarovce- Hungary border

D3: Dolný Hričov – Žilina – Čadca – Skalité- Poland border

D4: Jarovce – Austria border

R1: Trnava – Nitra – Zvolen – Banská Bystrica

R2: Czech border – Trenčín – Prievidza – Zvolen – Rimavská Sobota – Košice

R3: Hungary border – Zvolen – Martin – Poland Border

R4: Hungary border – Košice – Prešov – Svidník – Poland border

R5: Svrčinovec – Czech border

R6: Beluša – Púchov – Czech border

R7: Bratislava – Nové Zámky – Krupina – Lučenec

Main roads in Slovakia are toll roads with charging via a vignette system. Vignettes can be purchased for periods of 1 year for 50 Euros , 30 days for 14 Euros or 10 days for 10 Euros. More information can be found here.

Main routes are generally in good condition but rural roads are likely to be single lane and may be in a less satisfactory condition. The style of driving can be aggressive, with drivers often going too fast, pushing into dangerously small gaps, tailgating and overtaking on bends and hills. You may encounter slow moving vehicles, often in poor states of repair and with little lighting in rural areas- you should exercise caution when driving at night. If driving abroad in Slovakia in winter, equip your car for severe driving conditions. Check with the rental company if winter tyres, are needed  and if travelling outside main towns carry blankets, hot drinks in a thermos-flask, sacking (to help give tyres purchase in slippery conditions) and a shovel.  Vehicles must have their headlights switched on all year round, regardless of the weather and whether they are in a town or out in the country. Slovakia has  a zero tolerance approach to drinking and all drivers involved in an accident will be given a breath test as a matter of course.

Although I try and keep the information in the site updated as much as possible, in a rapidly moving world, situations can change daily. Therefore please use the site as an approximate guide, and in conjunction with other resources in order to form your view on driving conditions, roads, safety etc.

Slovakia  Car Rental –

Sixt, Hertz, Europcar, Alamo, National,Avis, Budget, all have outlets in Bratislava. Some have offices in Kosice too.Also usually features on Car rental broker sites  and Web discount sites such as  Expedia.

We currently have no local car rental partners in Slovakia. If you are a local car rental company who would like to feature on please check details on our Partnering page or contact us on

Slovakia Self Drive Rules –

The different rental companies all have different terms regarding cross border rentals and often seem to have a totally random group of ‘allowed’ countries . eg . Sixt allow cars to be taken to Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Spain. Hertz are even more specific saying – Hertz vehicles cannot be driven into and/or dropped off in any African, Asian or Middle East country, nor across the borders of or beyond the following countries: Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Greece, Ireland, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Serbia and Montenegro, Sweden, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, or any islands.In addition, Hertz vehicles must not take the boat, ferry or otherwise.Hertz vehicles may be driven to but not dropped off in Croatia (except Rijeka and Zagreb), Denmark (except Copenhagen), Hungary (except Budapest) and Spain (except Barcelona and Madrid). In fact the rules for Slovakia are as complex as I’ve seen for any country. My advice is to identify which company you want to use then tell them where you intend to drive and see what they say!


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