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About Namibia (NA)


Boasting truly breathtaking—and diverse—natural vistas, Namibia is located in the southwestern part of African, bordered by the Atlantic Ocean, Angola, Botswana and South Africa. Booking a car rental in Namibia is the best way to get around this country, which has a splendid array of mountains, deserts and coastlines. Your trip may start in the dynamic capital city of Windhoek, which is punctuated by still-visible German buildings.

One of Namibia’s main draws is its spectacular wildlife preserves. At Etosha National Park, you can see elephants and big cats. The startling beautiful coastal desert of Namib, with its sweeping red dunes, is the oldest desert in the world. In the south of the country, don’t miss Fish River Canyon—the largest in Africa. The rugged inland region of Damaraland is home to some of the most iconic landscapes in Namibia, as well as a rich variety of wildlife including rhinos. For a haunting and unique experience, don’t miss the Skeleton Coast.

  Getting around

The main roads in Namibia are paved and in good condition. You may, however, encounter an extensive variety of road types. Some attractions are only accessible via gravel roads. Note that in some regions, such as the Kaokoveld desert, you will need a four-wheel drive vehicle to safely pass. The most important thing to keep in mind when driving in Namibia is that road accidents are frequent, and you must take precautions. Drive slowly and exercise caution.

Carefully plan your itineraries, and make sure you have a satellite phone and sufficient supplies. It’s better to avoid driving at night, when it’s easier to miss an animal on the road. Furthermore, it’s illegal to drive while talking on the phone, and speed limits are strictly enforced in certain areas. Don’t drink and drive—the blood alcohol limit is 0.05%. Remember that you drive on the left-hand side of the road.

  Choosing your car

It’s common to rent a 4x4 truck or outfitted camper, such as a Toyota or Land Rover, in Namibia. An option for a cheap car rental in Namibia is a smaller compact car, especially around the urban areas. Other Namibia car hire choices include an SUV, a luxury sedan, or a spacious 7—12 person mini van or people mover for large families or groups. Major suppliers of car hire in Namibia include Avis, Hertz and Europcar.

  Tips and advice

1

Note that the rainy season runs from approximately January to April each year. If you are headed to Namibia during this time, exercise additional caution, especially on gravel roads.

2

For information on highways, as well as maps of the country, you can consult the website of the Namibia chapter of the International Automobile Association (AA).

3

Don’t leave any valuables in sight in your Namibia car hire, and always keep the windows and doors locked, especially in Windhoek.   

4

Away from the main cities, it’s a good idea to top up the gas tank of your car rental in Namibia whenever you pass a service station. Carry cash in case the station does not accept cards.

5

It’s advisable to get the highest level of supplemental car insurance when you rent a car in Namibia.

6

Make sure that your Namibia car rental has tires that are adequately inflated before you set out. Depending on where you are headed, it is also a good idea to ensure that you have a fully inflated spare.

Namibia Driving Rules and Tips


Namibia is a widespread country. However, cars are used more often than planes in getting around to different areas, though you can also take minibuses or trains. Away from the main roads many visitors to Namibia opt for  4x4.  Nonetheless, the guide below will help you become acquainted with the driving laws in Namibia if you want to explore by any vehicle.

Documentation

You will need the following documents when driving in Namibia:

  • A valid driver’s license from your country.
  • International Driver’s Permit, particularly if your license isn’t in English. Purchase it in your home country.
  • Official photo ID (passport).
  • Proof of Insurance if driving a rented car. Call to make sure you are covered.
  • Car Insurance Certificate: If you are crossing into Namibia in your car, you can get one at the border (free).
  • Ownership papers for the car you are driving or a letter from the owner.

Age Restrictions

You must be 23 to rent a car (with a year of experience), though the legal age to drive is 18.

Driving Rules, Laws, and Regulations

  • Drive on the left hand side of the road; pass on the right.
  • Road signs are similar to most European systems.
  • Everyone in the car must wear a seatbelt.
  • Use a hands-free set if you want to talk on your cellphone.
  • Gas stations generally only accept cash. Fill up when you can, as gas stations can be infrequent and fuel shortages do happen.
  • Main roads will be paved, while some other roads will be gravel. A few roads will be dirt. Be aware that you may not be able to do the speed limit on dirt or gravel roads. On a gravel road, you can flip the car if you have to swerve to avoid livestock or take a curve too fast.
  • Don’t overestimate how much you can drive in a day; most likely, you won’t be able to drive as far as you think you can due to road conditions.
  • Rain can cause flooding on some roads.
  • Be ready for abundant wildlife on the roads.
  • You will run into toll roads.
  • Don’t follow other cars too closely on gravel roads, as your car can be damaged.
  • Pay attention to your engine’s temperature, as it can overheat.

Speed Limits and Fines

Speed limits will be posted in kilometers per hour. Generally, they are as follows:

  • 60-80 km/h (37-50 mph) on Urban roads
  • 120 km/h (75 mph) on Paved freeways
  • 100 km/h (62 mph) on Gravel freeways

Fines range from about 500 Namibian dollars to 3,500 Namibian dollars, depending on how fast you are going and in what speed zone. Cameras and radar are both used to catch speeders.

Drunk Driving

The legal Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) limit in Namibia is 0.05g/100ml. Police can set up roadblocks to check for drunk drivers. You can face hefty fines or even significant prison time for driving above the legal limit. Remember, 0.05 is the equivalent of about one drink an hour.

Parking

  • Don’t park in zones marked with red and white.
  • You can only park for a little bit in yellow and white zones.
  • Motorcycle parking is marked with diagonal white lines.
  • You can be fined or your car can be clamped if you are parked too long in the wrong spot.

Traffic isn’t a huge problem in Namibia, so you’ll likely have more trouble with livestock than with cars. In rural areas, in fact, it may be several hours before you see another car, human being, or gas station. Always be prepared with enough gas and water when traveling long distances.

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