Renting a car in South Africa – What do you need to know?
The best way to discover much of South Africa is by renting a car. This can easily be done as all the major international car rental companies are represented here. However, there are some things to look out for and need to know when renting a car in South Africa. You can find these tips below.
A car in South Africa
When renting a car in South Africa, it is important to rent a decent car that can take a beating. The roads here are not always of the same quality. Comfort is therefore very important! You can pre-record your car with one of the big international landlords such as Avis, Europcar and Hertz. Although there are some other possibilities that you can find online. You can also book this easily via sunnycars in the Netherlands and you are sure of a good insurance policy. Pay attention! You need a credit card when renting a car. Applying for an international driving licence is also still required.
Is it safe?
South Africa is a safe country to drive and especially if you are used to the busy traffic of ours. The traffic in South Africa is rather relaxed and pleasant, not counting the big cities. However, it is recommended not to leave valuables in the car and to always lock your car. Locking the door while driving and not taking hitchhiker’s is recommended. This for safety reasons. Unfortunately, South Africa is and remains a poor country, and not everyone deals with it in the same way.
What to look for when renting a car in South Africa?
- Condition of the car (tyres, spare fell, bottom car)
- Whether there is a good insurance policy that takes everything into account
- Insurance against theft (check this for sure!)
- Is there a breakdown assistance service with the rental service?
- Unlimited mileage?
- Charge for an extra driver?
Navigating South Africa
When renting a car in South Africa you often have the choice to rent a GPS. This often doesn’t cost that much, but you can save on it. For example, you can use an app that works offline and gets you anywhere. We always use the app Maps.Me and we’ve never been lost. This full application is free. If you do decide to rent a GPS, you can always store it well when you leave the car. This is to avoid theft and burglary in the car.
- In South Africa, there is a left-hand drive
- 120 km/h on motorways
- 100km/h on two-lane roads
- 60km/h in the cities
- Maximum permitted blood alcohol content is 0.5 per mille
- At intersections where everyone has a stop sign, the first stopped car can also leave first.
- In the case of serious offences, a prison sentence applies!
Useful facts when renting a car in South Africa
- Refuelling in South Africa is easy and is often done for you. All you have to do is indicate the amount of gas you want and the rest will be done for you. These people are expecting a small tip.
- In cities like Cape Town you will have to pay more for a full tank than at the petrol stations on the coast or inland.
- For a long drive inland, it is recommended to have half a tank refilled. You never know when you’re going to meet the next gas station.
- South Africa has some toll roads. You can pay for these toll roads manually on site or automatically via a sensor built in by the rental company. The final toll will then be settled with the rental company afterwards.
- Most roads in South Africa are not lit at night! And the sunset can go very fast in Africa. So always plan your rides well.