A guide for the overseas self drive, self sufficient, vehicle dependent visitor in Africa

"For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move; to feel the needs and hitches of our life more nearly; to come down off this feather-bed of civilization, and find the globe granite underfoot and strewn with cutting flints."

Robert Louis Stevenson

Hiring a 4x4 for a self drive safari in Africa

Rental Companies

Not all companies are the same. Some even offer drivers. Vehicles are kitted out differently, so look at the equipment lists. Age, mileage, diesel or petrol, long range fuel tanks, Roof top tents (1 or 2), Land Rovers, Land Cruisers, Hi-Lux, and the list goes on. Do they deliver to your destinations (including other countries) and pickup? Ask for equipment lists. Ask for details. Do you need a Sat phone? A GSM phone? A gps? Maps? Are they good maps? Some companies will book all the campsites and accommodations in route. You pay for it, but otherwise it can be a necessary service. Be sure to review the insurance coverages and alternatives so you have no surprises. Do they offer airport transportation?

Many of the South Africa companies will deliver and pickup vehicles to the neighboring countries at more then competitive rates. So don't limit your enquiries to just in-country rental companies.

When comparing rates, check to see if the cost of insurance, applicable taxes, and any other levys are included in the quote or rate sheet. Unlimited mileage?

**Recommendations below are derived almost entirely from hire companies' client reports of their experiences with their rentals. No commissions, compensation or any financial benefits have been received that would effect the composition, order of the hire company listings, or recommendations.

If you are having a problem locating a rental at reasonable rates, luangwablondes maybe able to negotiate a better rate or discount for you.

Never pay in cash in advance. You will discover you have no recourse if there are problems. No matter how cheap the rental may appear to be.

SAVRALA (Southern Africa Vehicle Renting and Leasing Association)



 South Africa Road Traffic Signs pdf

Toll Road Tariffs

Fines for Speeding in SA 

If a motorist is caught breaking the speed limit by more than 35km/h, in any circumstance, they will be arrested there and then. If you drive faster than this past a speed camera, you will be heading straight to court. However, if you pay your fines within 32 days, you will get a 50% discount.

Form DA65 Registration of Goods for Re-Importation  Although this form is directed to South Africansit might be a handy document to record your equipment that you may be required to declare at border crossings. Effective 3/2008 See Additional forms that maybe handy for more information.

International Diesel and Petrol Prices 

SA Fuel Prices

AAA application for an International Driving Permit (for holders of USA drivers licences)

Any valid drivers license is accepted in South Africa, provided: it bears the photograph and signature of the holder;  is printed in English; and if the license is issued while the holder thereof was not permanently or ordinarily a resident of South Africa for the period thereof; and, subject to the conditions under which such license was issued.  If your license does not comply, you should obtain an International Driving Permit before departure.

While South African law does not normally require an International Driving Permits for stays of less than six months, insurance companies for both long-term residents and rental car customers often require proof of a South African or an International Driving Permit in order to honor an insurance claim, even when such proof was not requested at the time the policy was secured.  


When getting quotes on rates, find out what is included (and excluded). Look at getting Super cover with no excess or low excess.

Have the hire companies send you a copy of the contract in advance, with the Terms and Conditions. Look at the fine print.

Standard cover options will not usually include towing, tyre or windscreen damages but the excess advised by the rental company should. Ask about that.

The choice of insurance can also depend on what cover you get from your credit card or travel insurance, sometimes they have excess cover and then it may be best to go with standard insurance. Take a copy with you.

People often save money by going with standard, being careful with the vehicle and making sure all docs are signed and cleared of damage before departing.

Go over closely with the rep for damage, including the undercarriage, before taking possession. Take pictures if you feel unsure.

No insurance covers vehicle replacement on 4x4 rentals or specialised vehicles if in collisions and can't continue. Client pays for new vehicle if he chooses to continue. Some have an issue with this but picture if you owned the vehicle and had an accident, You can't phone the dealer and order another to arrive, to continue you have to rent another. There are some hire companies that will occasionally assist a client where accident was not their fault, but this is out of goodwill and not contractual obligation.

There are some rental companies who go to town after receiving the rental vehicle back- I've heard tales especially about some Namibia companies and from a rental company who did a couple subhires. They alleged they got completely ripped off by the hire company. The credit card regulations however favour the card holder and they will invariably reverse any damages not completely agreed so client is often more protected than rental company.

Hiring / Renting a 4x4 , Motorhome, Camper

South Africa




 Specialist in African Self Drive Safaris


Explorer Safaris    Johannesburg

Supreme 4x4 Limo Hire   Johannesburg, Durban, Capetown

Desert 4x4 Rental    (Alt) (alt)   Upington 

  Maun Self Drive 4x4s  Highly recommended

BushTrackers     Johannesburg

South Africa 4x4   Johannesburg  Not recommended  Beware of this operator


Kgalagadi4x4 Hire      Upington 

Land Rover Solutions   Boksburg    

Berg 4x4 Rentals    Capetown 


Bobo Campers       Kempton Park  Not recommended


SMH Car Hire    Edenvale,Johannesburg

Simplify Vehicle Rentals    Nelspruit   4x4s plus trailers


4x4 Bushcamper  Capetown   Not recommended for travel in Botswana due to non-payment for recovery and towing service.

         There are few reliable companies to go to for recovery and breakdown service in Botswana, and that respond quickly.

         This company burned their bridges. The real question here, is if the company dodges its financial obligations, what else

         is it doing (or not doing)?


Camper Rentals   Joburg and Cptn

                  A.K.A -Sani Rentals 


Campers Corner    Randburg


Motor Home Express      KZN


AJC 4X4 Hire   Modimolle, Limpopo   Del'y/pick for SA, Namibia, Botswana, Zambia and Mozambique.

                        4x4 vehicle training course offered with hire 


AfriCamper    (de)  Joburg, Durban, Cptn, Windhoek


Reality 4x4    Citrusdal, W. Cape

Zebra Camper Hire Benoni, Windhoek   
                             new company(2013)- no history, backup in other countries should be a consideration

Ivory 4x4 Rental    Pretoria          

Zuri Africa    Joburg Cptn George PE Durban

Caprivi Car Hire  Joburg CpTn Windhoek

Bushlore Camper Rentals SA   Bushlore   

   Randburg_Joburg, CapeTown, Windhoek, Vic Falls, Livingstone, Lusaka      

Kea Campers   a.k.a.  Britz    a.k.a   Maui   Check the condition of the vehicle, the equipment and inventory before accepting their vehicles. There has been many complaints and little sympathy later($$$). Is it worth the hassle when their rates are higher then their competition? Lots of complaints in 2012 and 2013.


Buffalo Campers   Randburg   motor homes and 4x4's   There have been some complaints regarding the condition of their 4x4's and attitude  about complaints   example of a negative review 


Safari 4x4 Hire  Pretoria


AfriTrax    Pretoria    Not Recommended  Their vehicles are not maintained, lots of complaints, and they aren't paying their bills.


4x4Campers   Kyalami, Johannesburg


Exoticar   vehicles for film productions  Cape Town 


Camper Hire     


Lazarus Motor Company    Centurion


Safari Centre  


4X4 Hire 4U    Near Joburg A/P  


Lekker Camper     Capetown  Microbus 4x2


TravelStar Motorhomes  Guateng and Cape Town


Tony's Car Hire  Joburg - cars only with camping equipment, no 4x4s


Rent-A-Wreck     no 4x4's 


CABS  Joburg, CpTn, Durban, George, PE, Windhoek


First Car Rental 


Helderberg Camper Hire   Joburg Cptn



Beware of companies with vehicle Buy-Back Schemes.  I have heard there has been many 'problems'. Read the contract carefully and decide for yourself if this is what you want to get involved in. If it comes to litigation, is it worth it to you to return to SA to go to court.


Drive Africa**  


Drive South Africa**    Subcontracts 4x4s rentals from other 4x4 hire companies  

NOT RECOMMENDED - Buy Back or vehicle rental. DSA was involved in a 'Bait and Switch' scam leading up to Twende literally disappearing from their place of business. Buyers were left with expensive vehicles and no recourse.


Twende    out of business, involved with DSA in failed Buy Back Scheme


*The Director of Drive South Africa has been contacted and refuses to address in writing issues related to DSA and Twende.  "an End to the Columbus Era"


Amazingly, after DRIVE SOUTH AFRICA created a webpage last year to advise the world it is out of the Buy-Back Business, they have started it up again in 2010, IMO looking for more suckers. 



Crazy Combis  VW Kombis   Cape Town

  No longer in business


Twende No longer in business  CapeTown- Involved in failed BuyBack Scheme






Specialist in African Self Drive Safaris

Roving Rovers  near Nakuru (Njoro)                                          

Avenue Car Hire    Nairobi 

Concord Car Hire  Nairobi


Adventure Baisy Oryx Safaris    Nairobi


Arid Adventures   Nakuru   


Africa Traxx Ltd.  Nairobi   For experienced 4x4 drivers only. Their fleet of modified Range Rovers and Discoverys include RTTs, frig/freezers, long range fuel tanks, among an extensive list of equipment and camping gear designed for an expedition in Africa.  

Cruising Cruisers    Karen, Nairobi

Bushtroop Safaris   Nairobi


Adventure Alternative   4x4s and a 30 seater 4x4 truck    


Ketty Tours   Mombasa


KenTz Executive Shuttle   Nairobi    Kenya car & 4WD hire

Erikson Rover Safaris    Nakuru


Whistling Thorns    Truck Hire


Tough Tracks   


Noranairi Tour and Travel   


Africa 4x4 Cafe   


Upgrade Tours and Car Hire   Not Recommended - see Guestbook page - Oct 7,2011 


Sunworld Safaris 


Central Rent A Car     we have fully equipped safari vehicles with roof-tent, fridge, etc.


Autodrome Services Ltd    (020) 374 51 94  The Crescent,Westlands


Africa Expedition Support    overland truck charter & guided self drive vehicles, Nairobi 


Run Wild Safaris and Tour 

Steenbok Safaris and Car Hire E

East Africa Shuttles

AfriChoice   Nairobi MARLEEN BUIS  Rent her landcruiser at your own risk

Adventure Africa Expedition dickson wambugu  Associated with


4X4-Kenya  Not Recommended  

Njewa Safaris  

Carlink   Nairobi

SunRays Rent-a-Car Safaris    Nairobi




Shaw Safaris     Arusha (near Arusha N.P.)   Recommended

Specialist in African Self Drive Safaris

LakelandAfrica  Dar es Salam


Fortes Car Hire   



Arusha Naaz  


Auric Air Services        Mwanza


Planet Safaris       


Takims Holidays and Tours   Dar, Arusha, Zanzibar


       A.K.A.  Travel Mate   


Gazelle Safaris    Mbeya

Sam's Car Rental  Dar 






 Specialist in African Self Drive Safaris


Hemingways Vehicle Hire, Tours and Transfers    Livingstone    recommended 

                 Be sure to check condition of tires


  Maun Self Drive 4x4s  Highly recommended


Africa Tracks   Lusaka   Mitsubishi Delica 4X4 safaribuses     NOT RECOMMENDED

Limo Car Hire    Lusaka 


Bundu Adventures       Livingstone

City Drive Rent a Car   Lusaka  This company is new (2013)- recommend you find verifiable independent reviews before using





Bushlore Camper Rentals SA   Bushlore   

   Randburg, Joburg, CapeTown, Windhoek, Vic Falls, Livingstone, Lusaka               


Suwianji Gardens 


Alendo Travel 


Bimm Travel Agency & Car Hire  


Chita Car Hire and Tour  


Gemstar Enterprises 


Jul’s Car Hire 


Kuomboka Car Rental  


Sepiso Car Rentals 


Taiwo Travel Car Hire  

Tozema Car Hire and Taxi


Livingstone 4x4 Hire    No longer in business 

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Specialist in African Self Drive Safaris


Barefoot Safaris 


Land and Lake Safaris  


Hostellerie de France   Blantyre


Jambo Africa 


Ulendo Safaris


Budget Safari    Lilongwe


Sputnik Car Hire      Lilongwe


Ocean Car Hire  Lilongwe 


Siku Car Hire Services   Blantyre Lilongwe    Not Recommended

         Alleged overcharging. Get all quotes in writing.


SS Rent A Car 2000       Blantyre Lilongwe


Planet Car Hire    Lilongwe


Apex rent a car   Lilongwe


Countrywide Car Hire  Blantyre Lilongwe


Grand Prix Car Hire    Blantyre  Zomba


Avis       Blantyre Lilongwe


J & K Car Hire     Lilongwe


Skywave Car Rental  Lilongwe


Zoom Car Hire   Lilongwe Blantyre


Convenient Car Hire  Lilongwe 
Andrews Rent A Car  Lilongwe
Wheels of Champions   Lilongwe  0999866823  Samuel Kayuni

Pafe Car Hire   Lilongwe

Litto Car Rentals   Lilongwe

Malawi Tourism Association  -- other hire companies, including cars







  Maun Self Drive 4x4s  Highly recommended

   Affordable, kitted out 4x4s for camping, gameviewing & offroad travel

   Custom designed camping & lodging itineraries

   Comprehensive website directory of campsites & accommodations  within Botswana.

   Up-to-date information on booking campsites  with the Dep't. of Wildlife & National Parks (DWNP) & the operators of the DWNP privatised campsites.

   Botswana DWNP Campsite Booking service  for those that find the process difficult.



Specialist in African Self Drive Safaris


Britz / KEA / Maui           too many complaints- 2012-2013


Avis    (cars)  Maun Airport


Bushlore Camper Rentals SA     Bushlore     

          Randburg_Joburg, CapeTown, Windhoek,  Vic Falls     



Kasane 4x4     Kasane



Gecko Car Rental Namibia    Windhoek

    4x4 vehicles fully equipped with quality camping gear, 24 hour

    roadside assistance and more


Specialist in African Self Drive Safaris


Value Car and 4x4 Rental 


Link to lists of vehicle hire companies 


Car Rental Association of Namibia 


Camper Rentals 


Woodbury Camper Hire   between the A/P and Windhoek


Cardboard Box   Windhoek


Advanced 4x4  

  Maun Self Drive 4x4s  Highly recommended




Namvic Tours and Safaris


African Tracks


AfriCamper    (de)  Joburg, Durban, Cptn, Windhoek


Bushlore Camper Rentals SA     Bushlore    







City Cars          Kampala


Acacia Safaris      Kampala


Safari Eye       Kampala


Pearl of Africa Tours        Kampala


Banda Inns    Kampala


Landrovers4Hire     Jinja


Link to list of vehicle hire companies 

Another list of links to vehicle hire


Gorilla Tours         


Uganda Lodge     SW Uganda between Mbarara and Kibale- village of Ruhanga




Imperial Car Rental 


Moti Rent-a -car     Pemba airport


Kaskazini Tourism Services      Pemba  Suzuki 4x4s


Omar Rent a Car  Pemba


Fim do Mundu Safaris       Nacala


Avis Moçambique Car Rental   Beira
Telf 23 301263 Aeroporto

Imperial- Plus Rent a Car    Beira
Telf 23 302650 Aeroporto

Rent a Car Lobato   Beira
Tel 23 302521


Safi Rent-a-car  Pemba




 Nomadic Ethiopia   


Bella Abyssinia Tours 


13 Suns Tours  


Sora Tours   with driver and guide


Rainbow Travel    Addis Abba




Bushlore Camper Rentals SA     Bushlore    

    Randburg_Joburg, CapeTown, Windhoek, Vic Falls      

        Their vehicles can be taken to Zambia

  Maun Self Drive 4x4s  Highly recommended

Excellence Car Hire and Tours


Premier Travel


Warthogs Bush Camp & Cameron Harvey Safaris Kariba


Mwinilunga Safaris


Rockshade Car Rentals


Nyati Travel  Harare


Led Car Rental Services   Harare


Cameron Harvey Safaris    Kariba


4X4 Hire                  Harare


Zimbabwe Classifieds  on the web


Southern and/or East Africa


Specialists in African Self Drive Safaris




Africa Explorer    

Any man who can drive safely while kissing a pretty girl is simply not giving the kiss the attention it deserves.                                                  

                                      Albert Einstein




Wild dog spoor


Residencial Miramar

Luanda list of rent a car companies


Rwanda Safaris     


Specialist in African Self Drive Safaris   


Dabuka Expeditions

Azim Cars    5 Gammeat El Hak Fi El Hiya St., Sheraton, Heliopolis area Cairo 


Pape Diop Car Rentals Dakar                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

Hiring / Renting an Off Road Trailer

Bushlore Camper Rentals SA  Bushlore Randburg, Joburg 

Bushtrackers   Rivonia, Johannesburg


Explorer Safaris  Johannesburg


Chobe 4x4 Trailer Rentals  Pretoria & Bloemfontein


AJC 4X4 Hire  Modimolle, Limpopo


Root Adventure Africa     Silver Lakes, Pretoria 

Multirent    Pretoria

AfriTrax  Pretoria

Mission Outdoor Trailors   Bloubergrant

Big Five Rentals  Kempton Park


Desert Wolf   Pretoria


Getaway   East London


Offroad Trailer Hire  Port Elizabeth


Winelands 4x4     no website         Somerset West


Safari Centre    Menlyn Pretoria, Bryanston Joburg, Goodwood Cape Town, Umhlanga, Vereeniging, Upington. Ermelo, Boksburg, Windhoek


Ngonyama Camper Rentals    Waterkloof Ridge, Pretoria


Imagine Africa    Johannesburg


Fox Trailor Hire   Centurion


Camp in Seconds   Durban

Hiring / Renting Overlanding/Camping Equipment

Bushlore Camper Rentals SA   Bushlore     Randburg, Joburg


Tony's Car Hire    with car rental only

Kempton Park - 8km from O.R. Tambo (Joburg) Airport 


Overland Camp Rental

          Eden Park Brackenfell Cape Town  Western Cape 


Explorer Safaris  Johannesburg


Root Adventure Africa     Silver Lakes, Pretoria


Multirent    Pretoria


Bushtrackers Africa  Rivonia, Joburg


Safari Centre    Menlyn Pretoria, Bryanston Joburg, Goodwood Cape Town, Umhlanga, Vereeniging, Upington. Ermelo, Boksburg, Windhoek


Ngonyama Camper Rentals -Waterkloof Ridge, Pretoria   


Imagine Africa  Johannesburg


Drive & Camp  Capetown

Camp in Seconds Durban   


Camping Hire Namibia  Windhoek  (alt)


Adventure Camping Hire  Windhoek


Lusaka, Zambia  Reflections Lifestyle Out & About in Crossroads Shopping Center - sells camping equipment and accessories (mail) tel 260211-268317 Monday - Friday 09:00 to 18:00 Saturdays 09:00 - 17:00 and Sundays 09:00 - 13:00


Arusha, Tanzania -  A store in Arusha sells all stuffs of safari,safari clothes,tents,binoculars,mosquito reppelants,camping gases,safari boots,climbing gears and so much more,for just in case.its located next to Shoprite supermarket.I have spoken to them and told me they even rent binoculars,tents,cellphones,sleeping bags,etc,etc. (mail)


Nairobi - stores that sell new equipment- Nakumatt, Xtreme Outdoors  , Fast Eddies,


Harare, Zimbabwe  Big Sky Supplies   9 Pomona Shopping Centre, Pomona/Borrowdale - sells outdoor equipment on a commission basis. Used tents, cooler boxes, camping furniture, gas equipment, etc.

Hiring / Renting a Motorhome


Bushlore Camper Rentals SA   Bushlore       Randburg, Joburg


Root Adventure Africa    Silver Lakes, Pretoria


Bobo Campers   Kempton Park


Camper Rentals  Joburg and Cptn

                  A.K.A -Sani Rentals 


Campers Corner     Randburg


Helderberg Camper Hire   Joburg Cptn


Motor Home Express          KZN


South African Car Hire


Kea Campers  


Maui Motorhome Rentals depots in Johannesburg,

      Durban, Port Elizabeth, Cape Town and Windhoek.




TravelStar Motorhomes  Guateng and Cape Town


Camper Hire     


Drive Africa     


Drive South Africa       Not recommended 

Hiring / Renting a Quad or ATV

Root Adventure Africa     Silver Lakes, Pretoria


Afritrax    Pretoria

Buying an Off Road Trailer

South Africa


Alugllide Aluminium Trailers

AluPredator   George

Alu-star Aluminium Trailers PAARDEN EILAND

Bantam Trailers  Cape Town

Bermac Trailers   Durban

Big Boys Safari Equipment   Midrand

B'rakhah    Polokwane

BSA Trailer


BurnCo  Bellville, Western Cape

Bushman Offroad Trailers  Plaston, Mpumalanga

Bush Nest   Pretoria

Bush Trotter      Hennopspark, Centurion

Bushwakka   Worcester

Buzzard  Durban North

Campmaster     Naboomspruit

Camptech  Mooi River, CpTn, Kyalami

Challenger Trailers

Chase Naboomspruit


Conqueror Trailers


Cosmos Trailers Bredell


Cross Country Caravans


Decleor 4x4 & trailers

Desert Wolf   Pretoria



Echo 4x4  Centurion

  Richard's Bay

Fintastic    Edenglen

Gecho  Westonaria

Getaway Off-road Trailers  East London


Griffon Trailers  Zandberg Engineering Blackheath 021 905 3343

Hippo Trailers   Bloemfontein, Free State


Imagine Trailvan  Pretoria & Cptn


Infanta Trailers  Buffeljagsrivier


Jaguar 4x4 Trailors   Bellville




Lynx Trailors   Stilfontein



Mechter Quads & Trailers  Pretoria

Mission Outdoor Trailors  Bloubergrant  

Ngonyama Camper Rentals Waterkloof Ridge, Pretoria 

Novelle Engineering   Die Wilgers

Offtrax Offroad Trailors   Pretoria

Predator Trailers  George


Ramkat Trailers 

Rhino Trailers   Rhino Canopies, Springs


Rigid Trailers Morne le Roux 083 357 5330

Safari Centre   Menlyn Pretoria, Bryanston Joburg, Goodwood Cape Town, Umhlanga, Vereeniging, Upington. Ermelo, Boksburg, Windhoek

Torsion Trailers   Meyerton


Trailer Specialist 


Travel Light Trailers     Roodeporte


Valley Trailers


Vtec Trailer   (alt) (alt

Wild Dog Trailers


Schuhmacher    Nairobi

Hire a Safari Guide for your own Self drive Tour

website matches Safari Tour Guides with Tourists

African Chapter -Professional Wildlife Safari Guides                            

Satellite Phone Hire