Hiring a car means acquiring and using a car for a short period. This may be due to the fact that, you are a foreigner in South Africa or You are a South African who really needs a car for personal use or for a special occasion.
To avoid trouble with the South African traffic police, make sure that your driving license is valid. If your license is not written in English, you’ll need to apply for an International Driver’s Permit (IDP) ahead of your trip. If your driver’s license doesn’t include a photo, you must carry your passport with you also. You should never drive in South Africa without some form of photo ID.
Checklist for Driving in South Africa
- Valid driver’s license (required)
- IDP (required if your license is not printed in English)
What are the minimum requirements when renting from Budget?
Renters must be in possession of a valid unendorsed driver’s licence.
The minimum age is 18 years and driver’s licence must have been valid for a minimum of 1 year.
It is a legal requirement in RSA to be in possession of your driver’s license at all times whilst driving a vehicle.
Rules of the Road
Driving in South Africa can be a novel experience for those used to the roads of North America or Europe.
- Driving on the left side of the road: In South Africa, you will need to adjust to driving on the left side of the road. Before you take on the major highways, take some time to practice and adjust to driving on the left. Remember to keep to the left and pass on the right.
- Speed limits: Speed limitschange frequently, so make sure to keep an eye out for signs. Generally, the average speed limit is 60 kilometers per hour (37 miles per hour) in cities, 100 kph (62 mph) on secondary roads, and 120 kph (75 mph) on highways.
- Road signs: Road signs are often written in Afrikaans as well as English and distances are measured in kilometers.
- Seatbelts: Drivers and passengers are both legally required to wear a seatbelt at all times.
- Drinking and driving: In South Africa, the legal blood alcohol content is 0.05 percent, which is between one or two beers or glasses of wine depending on your body weight.
- Tolls: You’ll find tolls on the main highways, which can cost anywhere between 15 and 50 South African rand, and can be paid by cash and occasionally by credit card.
- Roundabouts: Known locally as turning circles, you must give way to the right when using one. However, some smaller ones will operate on a first-come, first-served basis, which will be clearly marked.
- Single lane highways: You’ll find that cars often pull over onto the hard shoulder to let other vehicles overtake. Flashing your hazards is the correct way to thank people if they do this for you.
- Four-way stop streets: These are common in cities and operate on a first-come, first-served basis.
- Gas stations: Attendants will pump your gas for you as well as checking tire pressure and oil levels. It’s customary to tip these individuals at least 5 rand.
- Cell phones: Using a cell phone, whether talking or texting, while driving is not permitted.
- In case of emergency: If you run into any problem for any reason and need to contact emergency services, dial 112. For more specific assistance, you can dial 10111 for emergency police response and 10177 for an emergency ambulance response.
Should You Rent a Car?
The independence of renting a car is ideally suited to family travel, and when checking out the safari parks, a more cost-effective option than an expensive packaged tour. Renting a car is especially worthwhile in South Africa, where public transport is limited in big cities and non-existent in rural areas (and often either unreliable or unsafe for visitors to use). Rideshare services are readily available in major cities such as Cape Town and Durban, and can be used instead of a rental if you don’t plan on leaving the city. If you rent, check your insurance carefully, making sure that it includes coverage for vehicle theft, and remember to ask about additional fees.
If you intend on covering large distances, fuel efficiency may be your top priority, while a high clearance vehicle (and possibly a 4×4) is a good idea if you’re headed out on safari. Air-conditioning is a must, especially if you’re traveling during the South African summer, while optional extras including roof racks or a GPS can help you to get the most out of your self-drive experience. Stick shift cars are more common than automatic cars in South Africa, so make sure that you’re comfortable driving manual, or request an automatic.
How much is renting a car for a day?
When you opt for a one-day rental, if you only need it for minor transportation, a compact economy car may be the way to go. How much does it cost to rent a car for a day? The range will vary depending on location, but an average price is anywhere from $45-$65 a day.
Car Hiring Companies In South Africa
Tony’s Car Hire – Car rental agency in Kempton Park, Gauteng. Phone: 011 393 2429
Pace Car Rental South Africa
Address: 40 14th St, Marlboro, Sandton, 2192
Phone: 011 262 5500
Car Hire Cape Town | National Car Hires South Africa
Address: 25 Kitchener Rd, Woodstock, Cape Town, 7925
Phone: 021 447 9539
Thrifty Car Rental
Address: Pretoria Main Rd, Eastwood, Pretoria, 0002, South Africa, Eastwood, Pretoria, 0002
Pace Car Rental Durban
Address: La Lucia, Umhlanga, Durban, 4051
Phone: 011 262 5500
Xtreme Car Rental Park Station
Address: Shop 4 ,1st Floor, Car Rental level City of Johannesburg, 2001
Phone: 083 337 3187
AVIS Rent a Car
Address: 56A Von Wielligh St, Rustenburg, 2999
Phone: 014 592 9902