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Barbados Car Rental Guide

Home/Get Around Barbados/Barbados Car Rental Guide

Renting a car in Barbados is easy as many companies have multiple vehicles and car types to rent.

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One of the most popular Barbados car rentals is the Moke. If you’ve never been to the Caribbean island or heard of a Mini Moke, you must try one out. It’s sort of like a dune buggy, a go-cart, a convertible, and a car, all mixed to form a mini-moke, a genuinely novel idea and probably highly different from what you drive at home.

Of course, we have other rental cars, from convertibles and full-size sedans to economy car class, compact cars, minivans, jeeps, SUVs, and even luxury cars. You can select the best car for your vacation needs.

Extras such as child seats, mobile phones, unlimited mileage, and road maps are also provided at an additional cost.

COVID-19 – Coronavirus

With the uncertainty of Covid conditions worldwide, many rental companies now offer free cancellation.

There are a few rules, however, when renting a car. The most important one is that you must have a local driver’s license.

On Monday, October 12th, 2020, the Barbados Revenue Authority (BRA) will only begin processing Visitor’s Permits online. BRA will process payments will be processed through the SurePay online payment

platform www.surepaybills.com and its network of locations.

Visitor Permits

A visitor wishing to drive on the road must apply for a Visitor’s Registration Certificate, commonly known as a Visitor’s Permit.

Applications can be made for a visitor’s permit for a period of stay:

  • Under two months, the fee is BBD 10.00 or USD 5.
  • Over two months, the price is $100 (Barbados dollars) or $50 US dollars.

The application can be made by a valid email address to: [email protected] or facilitated at any rent-a-car agency. A dedicated telephone line (246) 243 1698 addresses visitors’ queries and guides in this regard.


DOWNLOAD THE VISITOR DRIVING PERMIT APPLICATION FORM HERE


Process

A visitor must email a scanned copy of the following documents with accurate and updated information concerning the application for a period of stay under two months:

  • Valid international driver’s license
  • Completed application form, including the following:
  • Name
  • Date of entry
  • Country of residence
  • Address on island

The visitor must also email a scanned copy of the following documents and information concerning the application for a period of stay exceeding two months:

  • Valid international driver’s license
  • Passport showing working/living status
  • Completed application form, including the following:
  • Name
  • Date of entry
  • Country of residence
  • Address on Island
  • The application is reviewed and approved; a unique identification number is issued.
  • This ID number facilitates payment at SurePay online or any SurePay location.
  • The visitor is given a receipt from the SurePay cashier.
  • The payment confirmation report from SurePay is generated and sent to the Authority hourly.
  • The visitor’s permit will be issued via email the next business day.
  • The Barbados Revenue Authority (BRA), located at Southern Plaza, Oistins, Christ Church, also permits.

A Visitor’s Permit, which a car rental company does not issue, is required to drive on our roads. The application should be completed and submitted on the website via email at [email protected]

All drivers must be between the ages of twenty-one and sixty-five with a minimum of three years of driving experience. Sometimes drivers between the ages of twenty-one (21) and twenty-five (25) may have to pay more to rent a car.

All companies have their own set of rules and regulations. Therefore you should inform yourself before signing for the rental upon collecting the car.

If the vehicle you have reserved is unavailable, you can choose a similar car from the same class. If none are available in the type you wish, they will offer you an upgrade to a higher grade than possible.

Pick-up and Car Rental Locations

You can arrange a suitable pick-up date and location, such as the airport or the Bridgetown Cruise Terminal. Many companies will deliver the vehicle to a private residence, hotel, or apartment, so be sure to ask when booking your car.

Most companies offer pick-ups and drop-off locations, such as the Grantley Adams International Airport, Bridgetown, Holetown, Speightstown, and St. Lawrence Gap.

Barbados Driving Tips

– Driving is done on the left side of the road.

– Seat belts are compulsory.

– The speed limit on all roads is 60 km/h (37 mph) unless otherwise posted.

– The speed limit on the ABC Highway and the Spring Garden Highway is 80 km/h (50 mph).

– A horn honk is usually a warning or an “excuse me, here I come,” but is often a “hello” to a passing friend.

– Bajan rush hour is generally from 7:00-8:30 am and 4:30-5:30 pm. Don’t get caught.

– When someone flashes their lights at you at a junction, it usually means “after you.”

– The roundabout system of lanes is: If you take the first left exit off the roundabout, you stay in the left lane; for all other turns off the roundabout, you should remain in the right path. Always give way to your right at the roundabout. Please view this animation on YouTube for a detailed guide on maneuvering around roundabouts.

– Visitors to the island are easily identifiable on the road by the ‘H’ number plate. Locals usually accommodate your confusion with directions, roundabouts, road signs, etc., and make allowances!

– If you have an accident, you must leave your vehicle in its position and phone your car rental company immediately.

Car Hire Companies

Some local car rental agencies represent international and United States companies. Popular brands such as Avis, Alamo, Europcar, Thrifty, Hertz Car Rental, and Sixt Car Rental are associated with local car hire agencies.

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About Totally Barbados (Edit profile)

Brett Callaghan is the founder and managing director of Totally Barbados. I specialize in writing content for the tourism industry for my island home of Barbados. I help companies build strategies to grow their businesses online with SMART marketing, advertising, and social media goals.

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