Vehicle hire in Milan is an excellent way to enjoy flexible travel that lets you take in the city at your own pace. Driving around Milan can be intimidating for those unfamiliar with the area, particularly in the city. You should also be aware that as of January 2012, Milan introduced a London-style 'congestion charge' system named 'area C', whereby all private cars entering the city have to pay a 5 euro toll on weekdays between 7:30am and 7:30pm.
Italian road signs do not indicate directions as with many other countries' signs, and simply feature a city sign. If you are planning on visiting a particular restaurant or are driving to your hotel, it is best to check for the main roads nearby prior to setting off, as roundabouts and exits off main roads often feature places of interest but are difficult to read as you drive. If you see a sign that reads 'zona traffico limitato' or 'zona pedonale', it indicates a pedestrian zone that is prohibited for cars.
Parking in the city centre can be problematic, as residents have priority parking and spaces can be expensive. Generally, private parking spaces are cheaper and can be reserved for several days, taking the stress out of trying to find a parking space at the last minute. In the majority of suburban Milan you can park by the curb using the 'pay and display' machines, in spaces marked by blue lines. When parking in suburban areas, be very careful not to use spaces marked by yellow lines as these are reserved for residents use only.
Drivers in Milan will be able to make use of the country's 'Autostrade' system, the national motorway system. Using this motorway system, you can reach Florence and Rome using the A1 road. If you want to make a trip to Venice or the fair city of Verona, take the A4.