Are you planning for a self drive in Uganda? Many travelers today opt for self drive vacations in Uganda and many other countries. Here are the top tips for those opting to drive themselves for the entire stay of their holidays within Uganda;
- The minimum age for visitors renting a car in Uganda is 18 years. Car rental companies typically require between 2 and 5 years driving experience. Drivers over 70 years of age require a medical certificate.
- Bring your drivers license with you. You need this to be allowed to start cruising on Ugandan soil.
- Hired cars can be easily recognized by the ‘H’ on their license plate.
- Remember that in Uganda we drive on the right side of the road. The vast majority of vehicles are right hand drive but this does not rule out the fact that you will encounter road users with left handed vehicles so take care and drive safely with a lot of diligence.
- Wearing of seatbelts is compulsory in Uganda for both drivers and passengers. Children under 5 years of age must use an appropriate child seat, which can be rented from local car rental companies.
- Speed limits are posted in kilometers/hr rather than miles/hr. 1 kilometer = 0.62 miles. Typical Uganda speed limits are: city areas – 40 km/h, rural areas – 60 km/h, major highways – 80 km/h. Always check the signs to be sure you’re not exceeding the limit.
- Always park in well-lit areas and avoid leaving valuables in your car.
- In Uganda the honk of a car horn is often used as ‘hello’ to a friend or ‘thanks’ for giving way. When a driver flashes their lights at you it generally means that they are giving way to you.
- Local rush hours are 7:00 – 8:30am & 4:30 – 5:30pm. Plan your travel times accordingly.
- Never try at any one moment to sit behind the steering wheel when drunk. Obviously excessive drinking then driving is not wise! If you plan on drinking have a designated driver or take a taxi instead because if at all you risk, you won’t survive the breathalyzer police men that are scattered all over the roads.
- Roundabouts can be a bit confusing at first. Approach cautiously and follow the signs & road markings carefully. At roundabouts always give way to vehicles that have the right of way.
Booking a Self Drive Rental
Check if your car rental company offers or includes GPS units in their vehicles. Uganda has an excellent system in place that will be very useful especially if it’s your first visit to the country. Maps are available from car rental companies, hotels and many locations that matter.
In the unfortunate event of an accident, call your car rental company immediately. Do not admit any liability. The emergency service numbers are: Police 999, Fire Service 112.