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Int’l Driving Permit a Must for Vehicle Rental in Greece

Non-EU travelers will be required to hold an International Driving Permit (IDP) together with a valid national driver’s license if they wish to rent vehicles in Greece.

A recent law foresees hefty fines in case of violation for both customers and rental services as well as seizure of the vehicle.

The Greek Car Rental Companies Association (STEEA), representing rental services across Greece, is calling on the transport ministry to re-examine the law and make clarifications.

“The lack of clarity on the part of the ministry will lead to misinterpretation and heavy fines in cases where – wrongly so – drivers did not hold an International Driving Permit,” STEEA said, adding that the said law “discriminates against car rental companies in that penalties apply only to rental services”.

“This may pose a problem for tourists who neglected to bring the international permit because they will not be able to rent a car in our country. The fines are huge and a circular from the ministry is needed to clarify the situation especially in view of the start of the summer season as it may impact car rental companies and tourism overall,” STEEA director Anna Vlachava told the Athens News Agency.

In most cases, issuing an IDP takes about a day and is valid for a year. For travel to EU countries, Greeks can apply for a relevant one- or three-year permit from ELPA (Automobile and Touring Club of Greece).

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