Car Rental in Kos
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Why rent a car in Kos?
Kos is a great place to explore by car. It has a wealth of impressive architecture and ancient sites as well as beautiful beaches, quaint fishing villages, and many small restaurants that serve delicious local food. The island has no single center and many areas can only be accessed by car, so getting your own ride is the best way to see as much of it as you can.
Top ways to enter Kos
- Kos Airport: Also known as Hippocrates Airport after the Ancient Greek “Father of Medicine” who was born on the island, Kos Airport served 2.6 million travelers in 2018. The airport is growing at a rapid pace, having recorded a 14% increase from the previous year. The airport is especially active during the summer months when it has flights by more than 30 different airlines. The airport is located in the central part of the island, not far from its southwestern coast. With a car, it can be reached from any other point on the island in 45 minutes at most.
- By ferry: It is also possible to fly to another international airport on one of the nearby Greek islands and then take a ferry to Kos. Some airports near Kos include Rhodes Airport, Samos Airport, Santorini Airport, Karpathos Airport, and Naxos Airport. It might be possible to pick up a rental car at the airport and then take it to Kos by ferry, but you should first ask your rental car provider if they permit it. A lot of them won’t, so a better idea might be to take a ferry as a passenger and to pick up a rental car at Kos Ferry Port. It’s also important to check the ferry schedule in advance - the services are much more frequent during the spring and summer months.
- During the summer months, there is also a ferry service between Kos and Bodrum in Turkey. It is possible to reach Kos by flying to Bodrum International Airport and then taking a ship to Kos. However, be sure to check if you need a visa to enter either Turkey or Greece - the two countries have quite different immigration laws (for example, Greece is a member of the Schengen Area while Turkey is not).
- Like the surrounding Greek islands, Kos enjoys a warm Mediterranean climate. The average high temperature is 30°C (86°F) in July and August, the warmest months, and 13°C (56°F) in January, the coldest. Kos’ summers are extremely dry with practically no precipitation from June to August; on the other hand, it’s quite rainy from November to February.
- Like many other places in Greece, Kos has had a turbulent and fascinating history. First inhabited by ancient Carian tribes, it was invaded by the Dorians and Persians; later, Romans, Byzantines, Ottomans, and Italians ruled it, all leaving their print on the island’s architecture, customs, and cuisine.
- Although part of Greece, Kos is located very near mainland Turkey and has historically had a high Turkish population. Even though its proportion has slightly decreased over the last 100 years, there are still about 2,000 ethnic Turks living on Kos today. Gazi Hassan Pasha Mosque, their main historic place of worship, is one of the island’s landmarks. Kos is known in Turkish as İstanköy.
Top destinations and activities
- Nerantzia Fortress. First built in the 14th century by the Knights Hospitaller, the fortress is one of the most impressive buildings on the island. If you arrive to Kos by ship, the fortress will be the first thing you will see upon entering the island’s main harbor. Open to visitors, the architectural complex is as interesting from the inside as it is from outside.
- Tree of Hippocrates. “Only” 500 years old, the most famous tree on Kos is much too young to have seen Hippocrates. However, according to legend, it is a descendant of a similar tree under which the father of medicine indeed sat while teaching his students. According to another story, so did Apostle Paul at a slightly more recent date. Combine seeing the tree with visiting the nearby Hippocratic Museum where you can learn more about about Ancient Greek medicine and science.
- Ancient Agora. Built in the 4th century B.C., it replaced an even earlier building that was destroyed by an earthquake, the marketplace of ancient Kos was one of the largest and most famous in the ancient world. Although nowadays only ruins remain of its former glory, it is still a fascinating place to visit. Located near Kos’ harbor, it’s also very accessible.
Traffic and parking
- There are no highways on Kos (nor on any other Greek island).
- Unless specifically indicated otherwise, the speed limits are 90km/h (56 mph) on roads outside populated areas and 50km/h (31 mph) in populated and built-up areas.
- Many gas stations might be closed during the weekends and public holidays.
- It is illegal to use a mobile phone while driving.
- The legal alcohol limit is 0.05% for experienced drivers and 0.02% for novice drivers. Exceeding these limits can lead to steep fines and a license ban. Exceeding the limit of 0.08% is a criminal offense and can lead to up to two years of imprisonment.
- Proof of insurance and the car’s documentation need to be in the car whenever you’re driving.
- When driving, you need to have your passport or ID card with you at all times.
- The general emergency number, like elsewhere in the EU, is 112. The police number is 100, the ambulance number is 166, and the fire brigade number is 199.
There are no toll roads on Kos.
There are a number of toll roads, tunnels, and bridges on the mainland of Greece. Many travelers find them very hard to navigate and some choose to avoid using the toll roads altogether because of the very complex toll road system that is in place. Different toll roads are administered by different private companies and so there is not a single, nationwide (or even region-wide) toll road system in place.
For most toll roads, payment can be either made with cash at a toll gate, by credit card, or with coins at an automatic toll machine. For some roads, an electronic transponder might be used to pay for using the toll road. Some rental cars might be equipped with such an electronic transponder. However, because of the aforementioned different toll road systems that are in place, this payment method might work for some toll roads but not for others. Determine your route in advance and ask your car rental provider about the best way to pay for the toll roads that you plan to use.
Ideas for day trips
- Beaches. Kos is a great beach destination, its long and beautiful shoreline being the number one reason why tourists visit the island. Lakkos Beach is tranquil and relaxed, Agios Fokas Beach has impressive black sands, and Psilos Gremos Beach, only comfortably accessed by car, has a truly remote and private atmosphere.
- Asclepieion. In the 4th century B.C., Asklepieion was both a healing center where physicians practiced and a sanctuary where local people celebrated important festivals and worshipped Asclepius, an Ancient Greek hero and god of medicine. The ruins of the Asclepieion are in the inland part of the island, but at the same time are near enough to the coast to provide great views of the sea.
- Water Sports. If you’re looking for something more exciting than just lying on the beach and enjoying the sun, there are many water sports you can try. Kos is one of the Mediterranean hotspots for yachting, so it’s a perfect place to try your hand at sailing (or even just enjoy the view of spectacular yachts at Kos’ marina). There are also great surfing opportunities at Mastichari Beach while Marmari Beach is the island’s top kitesurfing spot.
Most popular cars
The most popular rental car in Kos is the Opel Corsa, although many travelers also go for the Fiat Panda and the Toyota Aygo. The most popular rental car types are economy, mini, and compact.
- Rhodes. Larger and busier than Kos, the famous Rhodes attracts visitors with its fortresses and castles, impressive historic sites and dramatic natural beauty. The town of Rhodes, the island’s largest settlement, will feel like a large city after coming from Kos but is just the tip of what this beautiful place has to offer.
- Patmos. The opposite of Rhodes, Patmos is the perfect place to go to if you’re looking for even more calm and quiet than Kos has. Made up of picturesque tiny villages where locals make and sell delicious food in small restaurants and tavernas, serene beaches, as well as old Christian sites like the Monastery of Saint John the Theologian and the Cave of the Apocalypse, Patmos is best enjoyed at a slow pace.
- Kalymnos. The neighboring island of Kalymnos is smaller and also gets relatively fewer tourists - but its beaches are arguably just as attractive. On top of that, Kalymnos is also known for its coastal cliffs, which attract plenty of climbers, as well as the Monastery of Saint Sava near the island’s southeastern coast.
- Bodrum. Located just across the Gulf of Gökova from Kos, Bodrum is a name not only for the ancient port city, but for the larger Bodrum Peninsula that surrounds it. The beaches here are just as stunning as on the Greek Islands, but what sets Bodrum apart is its special atmosphere you can best enjoy at its old religious sites, hammams (or Turkish bathhouses), and the many fishing villages that dot the shoreline. Just make sure that you don’t need a visa to enter Turkey (unlike Greece, it is not a part of the Schengen Area).
Note: While it is possible to go from Kos to Rhodes, Patmos, and other places in Greece by ferry, most rental car providers will not permit bringing a car on one, even if you would later return the car in Kos. A better idea is to go as a passenger and to pick up a new rental car after arriving at your destination.
Most rental car providers won’t permit bringing a rental car on the ferry to Bodrum as it is in Turkey. You can pick up a new rental car after arriving in Bodrum or just go on a day-trip without a car and later return to Kos.
Car Rental Prices in Kos
- Station wagons - from $41 per day
- Large cars - from $31 per day
- Medium cars - from $15 per day
- Vans - from $57 per day
- Premium cars - from $99 per day
- Small cars - from $11 per day
- SUVs - from $20 per day
Follow this advice to get a great rental car in Kos:
- Compare the rates of different rental car providers
- Book your rental car well in advance
- Plan your route before you go
- Know your fuel and mileage requirements
- Visit during the month when the rental prices are the cheapest. According to our data, visiting Kos is the cheapest in March when renting a car is about 73% cheaper than the yearly average and a whole 82% than renting a car in July. Come visit the Dodecanese islands in early spring!
Top 20 Cities near Kos
Patmos Car Rentals from $20.22 per day76.3 km / 47.4 miles away
Rhodes Car Rentals from $5.27 per day98.7 km / 61.3 miles away
Samos Car Rentals from $12.46 per day101.0 km / 62.8 miles away
Kolymbia Car Rentals from $23.15 per day112.6 km / 70.0 miles away
Lindos Car Rentals from $23.39 per day116.7 km / 72.5 miles away
Ikaria Car Rentals from $20.22 per day119.0 km / 73.9 miles away
Santorini Car Rentals from $9.40 per day150.5 km / 93.5 miles away
Karpathos Car Rentals from $13.28 per day152.6 km / 94.8 miles away
Naxos Car Rentals from $13.23 per day156.2 km / 97.1 miles away
Ios Car Rentals from $19.66 per day162.1 km / 100.7 miles away
Mykonos Car Rentals from $12.25 per day170.3 km / 105.8 miles away
Paros Car Rentals from $8.62 per day175.7 km / 109.2 miles away
Chios Car Rentals from $12.18 per day191.6 km / 119.1 miles away
Syros Car Rentals from $21.39 per day204.8 km / 127.3 miles away
Milos Car Rentals from $13.55 per day235.7 km / 146.5 miles away
Lesvos Car Rentals from $11.51 per day255.4 km / 158.7 miles away
Mytilene Car Rentals from $13.28 per day261.3 km / 162.4 miles away
Kea Car Rentals from $71.76 per day264.3 km / 164.2 miles away
Athens Car Rentals from $3.47 per day305.8 km / 190.0 miles away
Souda Car Rentals from $25.45 per day307.4 km / 191.0 miles away
Top 20 Locations near Kos
Kos Airport Car Rentals from $10.70 per day
Downtown Car Rentals from $10.70 per day20.8 km / 12.9 miles away
Rhodes Airport Car Rentals from $5.27 per day98.7 km / 61.3 miles away
Samos Airport Car Rentals from $12.46 per day101.0 km / 62.8 miles away
Faliraki Car Rentals from $12.57 per day108.8 km / 67.6 miles away
Holiday Village Rhodes Car Rentals from $25.07 per day113.1 km / 70.3 miles away
Rhodes Lardos Car Rentals from $26.60 per day113.5 km / 70.5 miles away
Rhodes Gennadi Car Rentals from $23.15 per day114.0 km / 70.8 miles away
Lindos Mare Hotel Car Rentals from $23.39 per day116.5 km / 72.4 miles away
Lindos Blu Hotel Car Rentals from $23.39 per day116.7 km / 72.5 miles away
Rhodes Pefkos Car Rentals from $60.24 per day117.8 km / 73.2 miles away
Santorini Airport Car Rentals from $9.40 per day150.5 km / 93.5 miles away
Santorini Port Car Rentals from $16.50 per day153.7 km / 95.5 miles away
Naxos Airport Car Rentals from $13.28 per day156.5 km / 97.2 miles away
Mykonos Airport Car Rentals from $12.25 per day170.3 km / 105.8 miles away
Mykonos Port Car Rentals from $17.42 per day172.6 km / 107.2 miles away
Paros Port Car Rentals from $8.66 per day175.7 km / 109.2 miles away
Paros Airport Car Rentals from $8.66 per day176.3 km / 109.5 miles away
Chios Airport Car Rentals from $12.18 per day191.6 km / 119.1 miles away
Syros Airport Car Rentals from $21.39 per day202.3 km / 125.7 miles away
Map of Car Rental Locations
What is the cheapest month to rent a car in Kos?
This information can help you identify the low season. But these are only average numbers. How much your car rental will cost will depend on the type of vehicle you rent, how long you’ll rent it for, and how far ahead you book. Simply enter your dates in the form at the top of the page to see the exact prices.
What’s the usual rental length in Kos?
What's the most popular month to rent a car in Kos?
Car Rental Information
|Car rental locations||3|
|Popular suppliers||Avance, Alma Car Hire, EXER, ABBYCAR, Thrifty|
|Popular car categories||Small cars, Medium cars, SUVs, Vans|
|Lowest price||$11 per day|
|Cheapest supplier||Alma Car Hire|
Most Popular Car Models of Rental Suppliers
|Avance||Skoda Citigo||2||1||Small cars|
|Alma Car Hire||Suzuki Celerio||5||1||Small cars|
|Avance||Fiat Panda||5||1||Small cars|
|EXER||Toyota Aygo||3||1||Small cars|
|Alma Car Hire||Fiat Panda||5||1||Small cars|
|Avance||Citroen C3||5||1||Small cars|
|Alma Car Hire||Nissan Micra||5||1||Small cars|
|ABBYCAR||Suzuki Celerio||5||1||Small cars|
|Thrifty||Kia Picanto||4||1||Small cars|
|ABBYCAR||Peugeot 208||4||1||Small cars|
Our Customers' Reviews
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