Rental cars are available throughout the city of Damascus as well as at the airport, and from some of the larger hotels and resorts. If you’re planning to do any driving you should use extreme caution. The roads outside of the city can be in generally poor condition and guardrails are far and few between at best. Drivers in Syria do follow rules of the road, and will obey signals, but they often drive quickly and aggressively, even by American standards. Lane markings, when present, which isn’t that often, are also typically ignored. To rent a car you do not need an international drivers’ license but drivers must be 21-years or older, and often there are extra fees for drivers under 25 for some cars.

Cabs are also available for hire, but taxis do not use meters. Thus there is no such thing as a set fare. The cabbies range from surly, and many are downright anti-Western, to very pleasant and outgoing. If you’re doing a lot of sightseeing around the city you can see if the (more friendly) driver would be willing to be hired by the hour. It can often be more affordable than paying for short trips. Either way you should feel free to negotiate the fare, and come to an agreement before you begin the trip.

 Even though taxis are cheap due to low fuel prices, they will try to rob you. The taximeter will always be cheaper than your bargained price. Yet, drivers does not reset the meter, thus the starting price will be higher than normal. (Regular Starting Price: 5.50 Syrian Pounds or $0.10). If you still want to pay less, tell the driver to reset the meter and tell him to start driving. If he insists, tell him that you will complain him to the police. There are lots of polices around so he will reset.