Car Rental in Cape Town
Cheapest Car Rental Rates
Most Popular Car Rental Deals
Why rent a car in Cape Town?
Cape Town is a great city for renting a car. Mixing European and African influences when it comes to architecture, cuisine, and lifestyle, it really is a place like no other. It has often been named as the number one travel destination in the world for a reason. Having your own ride will let you see this vast and diverse city in its fullness, as well as to travel to nearby beaches and nature reserves.
One-Way Car Rentals in Cape Town
The most popular one-way rental options for pick up in Cape Town and drop off in another city include:
- From Cape Town to Port Elizabeth - 220 offers from $19.08 per day
- From Cape Town to Johannesburg - 246 offers from $19.08 per day
- From Cape Town to George - 178 offers from $19.08 per day
- From Cape Town to Windhoek - 47 offers from $40.69 per day
- From Cape Town to Hermanus - 12 offers from $17.51 per day
Top ways to enter Cape Town
- Cape Town Airport. Among the five busiest airports in Africa, Cape Town Airport serves more than 10 million passengers every year. The airport hosts many domestic flights, as well as flights to other African countries, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. The airport is located about 20 km (12 mi) east of the city center. Cape Town has frequently been named the best airport in Africa.
- George Airport. A small and cozy airport that only has domestic flights, George Airport is located in a beautiful holiday spot on the Indian Ocean and is about a five hours drive east of Cape Town.
- Port Elizabeth Airport. Although it is an eight-hour drive between the two cities, Port Elizabeth Airport is one of the closest international airports to Cape Town. It serves about 1.6 million travelers every year.
- By public transportation. If you’re arriving in Cape Town by public transportation, you can also conveniently pick up a rental car at car rental centers in Cape Town’s city center or in neighborhoods like Parow and Rondebosch.
Located at the very southwestern edge of Africa, Cape Town enjoys a pleasant Mediterranean climate. The winters are mild and humid while summers are warm and wet (as South Africa is in the southern hemisphere, the summers here last from December to March).
Cape Town is a city of great linguistic diversity. Afrikaans, a language similar to Dutch, Xhosa, a local, tonal Bantu language, and English are all spoken widely, and a number of other African languages can also be heard in the city.
Top destinations and activities
- Bo-Kaap (Malay Quarter). Famous for its colorful houses, Bo-Kaap is an area where Malay Muslims lived in Cape Town. Traces of those times can still be found throughout the neighborhood in things like the Nurul Islam Mosque and the unique food sold on street corners. Many places in Bo-Kaap also offer stunning views of the rest of Cape Town.
- Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden. Home to many unique flowers and plants from such varied biotypes as savanna, jungle, and desert, this green area is often named among the most beautiful botanical gardens in the world. In addition to the flora, the botanical garden also hosts frequent outdoor exhibitions, many of them dedicated to the native African cultures of South Africa and its neighboring countries.
- Surfing. Cape Town has some of the best surfing waves on the planet. There are opportunities for surfers of every level - starters will appreciate the more relaxed Muizenberg beach where it is also easy to find an instructor while pros will be glad to challenge themselves at Kalk Bay. There are also great options for kitesurfing, snorkeling, and many other water sports in and around Cape Town.
- Science Center. The museum-like center was created to promote scientific literacy and is one of the most interesting places to visit in Cape Town. Very interactive, it has a large number of exhibitions, scientific riddles, and fun technology to play with, making it an especially great place to visit for children and young adults. The center is in the Observatory neighborhood, named after the South African Astronomical Observatory which can also be visited.
- V&A Waterfront. Located in South Africa’s oldest working harbor, the 300-acre Victoria & Alfred Waterfront is a hip, entertainment complex with over 450 fashion, homeware and grocery stores, restaurants, and a 13-screen cinema.
Traffic and parking
- Unless specifically indicated otherwise, the speed limits are 120 km/h (74.5 mph) on freeways, 100 km/h (62 mph) on any public road outside of an urban area that is not a freeway, and 60 km/h (37 mph) on any public road within an urban or built-up area.
- When putting fuel in a car in Cape Town, the driver is required to remain in the car. Just park in the right area and the employee of the fuel station will soon come to you to find out which type of fuel and how much of it would you like to have.
- The legal alcohol limit is 0.05% per 100ml of blood and 0.24% per 1000 ml of breath for experienced drivers and is 0.00% for novice drivers. Exceeding the allowed limit can lead to large fines, deportation, or imprisonment.
- Proof of insurance and the car’s registration needs to be in the car whenever you’re driving.
- If you’re the driver, you need to have your passport or ID card with you at all times.
There are many toll roads in South Africa. However, unlike in most of the world, no payments are made on the highway, neither in cash nor by credit card. Instead, a vehicle is identified either by an electronic tag that is on the vehicle or by the vehicle’s licence plate number.
Many rental cars are equipped with an e-tag that will be used for making toll payments. Some rental car providers will charge an additional fee for this service. Ask your car rental provider about it beforehand.
The exact fee for using the toll roads depends on the type of road. See more information about the latest toll road fees on here.
If your rental car is not equipped with an e-tag, the bill for using the toll roads will be sent to your car rental provider. Due to delays in the South African toll road system, you could be billed and charged after the end of your rental period.
Ideas for day trips
- Table Mountain. Once an important reference point for early seafarers, and offering the best views of Cape Town, Table Mountain is one of the city’s most famous landmarks. It’s possible to go up the mountain with a cable car, but if you’re up for a challenge, climbing is also possible. The mountain is home to a really unique animal, the rock rabbit (also known as hyrax, or, as the locals call it, “Dassie”). It looks similar to a rodent, but its closest relatives are actually elephants and manatees.
- Boulders. A small, but popular beach sheltered by huge boulders, Boulders is famous for its permanent inhabitants, the African penguins that have a colony there. Boulders Beach is part of Table Mountain National Park that also has conversation programs for other animals like caracals, ostriches, and the klipspringer antelopes. Boulders Beach is about 45 km (27 mi) south of Cape Town.
- De Hoop Nature Reserve. Only accessible by car, De Hoop is a remote and pristine natural area about three hours drive east of Cape Town. Animals that live here include baboons, elands, leopards, and many others, but the reserve’s number one attraction is the Southern Right Whales who pass its beaches every year. Combine a visit here to the nearby, and equally interesting, Bontebok National Park.
- Robben Island. Located just off the coast of Cape Town, Robben Island is well-known as a former colony of political prisoners during South Africa’s Apartheid era. Nelson Mandela, the future president of South Africa and symbol of the peace movement around the world, was held on it for 18 years. Nowadays, the island has been turned into a museum and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You can only reach the island by ferry and it’s not possible to bring a car, but you can park it at the port and pick it up upon returning. The number of visitors permitted to visit the island daily is limited, so it’s a good idea to book tickets in advance.
Most popular cars
The most popular rental car in Cape Town is the Kia Picanto, although travelers also tend to choose the Ford Fiesta and the Toyota Corolla a lot. The most popular rental car types in Cape Town are the mini, economy, and compact classes.
For more about traveling around South Africa with a rental car, check out our complete guide.
- Groot Winterhoek Wilderness Area. Named after a mountain range, Groot Winterhoek is a protected nature area about a two-hour drive northeast of Cape Town. The reserve is made up of stunning peaks, wide waterfalls, and rock formations, and has many opportunities for trekking and hiking. There is interesting rock art dating back millennia to be found, as well as a conservation project with animals like klipspringers, leopards, and jackal buzzards. Accommodation can be found, including at forest stations inside the park (although it’s a good idea to book in advance). Visit Groot Winterhoek’s official website to learn more.
- Port Elizabeth. A picturesque city known for its museums, beaches, and large natural areas, Cape Town is one of the nicest and most relaxing places in the country. It takes about eight hours to reach it by car, with 700 km (430 mi) to cover. The long distance is well worth it, though.
- Namibia. A northern neighbor that only got its independence from South Africa in 1990, Namibia impresses with its long, sparsely populated beaches, and more than anything, the moon-like landscapes of the Namib and Kalahari Deserts. Like South Africa, Namibia is one of the most accessible countries of Africa. Luderitz, its nearest coastal city, is about an eleven-hour drive north of Cape Town. Do keep in mind that you’ll be crossing a national border, so first, ask your rental car provider if it is permitted. Alternatively, you can drop off your rental car in South Africa and pick up another in Namibia. Also, check to see if you require a visa to enter Namibia and the process for obtaining one if so.
- Botswana. With both the Okavango Delta, the Kalahari Desert, and many national parks Botswana is one of the most diverse countries in South Africa. The country is especially fascinating to experience if you have your own ride. Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, a nature reserve located in both South Africa and Botswana, is about 11 hours away from Cape Town. Do keep in mind that you’ll be crossing a national border, so first ask your rental car provider permits it. Alternatively, you can drop off one rental car in South Africa and pick up another in Botswana. Also, check to see if you require a visa to enter Botswana and the process for obtaining one if so.
Car Rental Prices in Cape Town
- Large cars - from $31 per day
- Medium cars - from $25 per day
- Vans - from $42 per day
- Premium cars - from $54 per day
- Small cars - from $18 per day
- SUVs - from $32 per day
Try these tricks to get a great car rental deal in Cape Town:
- Compare the rates of different rental car providers
- Book your rental car well in advance
- Plan your route before you go
- Know your fuel and mileage requirements
- Visit Cape Town when the rental prices are the cheapest. According to our data, visiting Frankfurt is the cheapest in May when renting a car is about 40% cheaper than the yearly average and a whole 70% cheaper than renting a car in November.
Top 20 Cities near Cape Town
Stellenbosch Car Rentals from $24.83 per day23.8 km / 14.8 miles away
28.0 km / 17.4 miles away
Hermanus Car Rentals from $25.02 per day77.4 km / 48.1 miles away
George Car Rentals from $20.01 per day348.3 km / 216.4 miles away
409.5 km / 254.5 miles away
Port Elizabeth Car Rentals from $17.49 per day646.8 km / 401.9 miles away
818.1 km / 508.3 miles away
Kimberley Car Rentals from $17.31 per day819.3 km / 509.1 miles away
East London Car Rentals from $16.52 per day861.2 km / 535.1 miles away
Bloemfontein Car Rentals from $20.01 per day908.3 km / 564.4 miles away
Mthatha Car Rentals from $18.66 per day979.0 km / 608.3 miles away
Margate Car Rentals from $23.93 per day1154.3 km / 717.2 miles away
Pietermaritzburg Car Rentals from $24.83 per day1212.7 km / 753.5 miles away
Johannesburg Car Rentals from $16.76 per day1270.9 km / 789.7 miles away
Durban Car Rentals from $20.01 per day1277.0 km / 793.5 miles away
Centurion Car Rentals from $20.98 per day1289.7 km / 801.4 miles away
Pretoria Car Rentals from $20.01 per day1302.0 km / 809.0 miles away
Richards Bay Car Rentals from $18.79 per day1405.0 km / 873.0 miles away
Nelspruit Car Rentals from $18.86 per day1537.2 km / 955.2 miles away
Polokwane Car Rentals from $18.79 per day1541.7 km / 958.0 miles away
Top 19 Locations near Cape Town
Cape Town Airport Car Rentals from $20.01 per day
Downtown Car Rentals from $20.01 per day17.4 km / 10.8 miles away
48.0 km / 29.8 miles away
George Airport Car Rentals from $20.01 per day348.3 km / 216.4 miles away
Port Elizabeth Airport Car Rentals from $17.49 per day646.8 km / 401.9 miles away
Port Elizabeth Rhodes University - Grahamstown Car Rentals from $25.02 per day736.0 km / 457.3 miles away
818.1 km / 508.3 miles away
Kimberley Airport Car Rentals from $17.31 per day819.3 km / 509.1 miles away
East London Airport Car Rentals from $16.52 per day861.2 km / 535.1 miles away
Bloemfontein Airport Car Rentals from $20.01 per day908.3 km / 564.4 miles away
Downtown Car Rentals from $23.47 per day1257.8 km / 781.6 miles away
Johannesburg Lanseria Airport Car Rentals from $20.01 per day1265.1 km / 786.1 miles away
Johannesburg Airport Car Rentals from $24.87 per day1270.9 km / 789.7 miles away
O.R. Tambo International Airport Car Rentals from $18.88 per day1270.9 km / 789.7 miles away
King Shaka International Airport Car Rentals from $20.01 per day1277.0 km / 793.5 miles away
Pretoria Hatfield Car Rentals from $20.98 per day1302.0 km / 809.0 miles away
Wonderboom Airport Car Rentals from $23.45 per day1308.6 km / 813.1 miles away
Richards Bay Airport Car Rentals from $18.79 per day1405.0 km / 873.0 miles away
Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport Car Rentals from $20.98 per day1537.2 km / 955.2 miles away
Map of Car Rental Locations
What is the cheapest month to rent a car in Cape Town?
This information can help you identify the low season. But these are only average numbers. How much your car rental will cost will depend on the type of vehicle you rent, how long you’ll rent it for, and how far ahead you book. Simply enter your dates in the form at the top of the page to see the exact prices.
What’s the usual rental length in Cape Town?
What's the most popular month to rent a car in Cape Town?
Car Rental Information
|Car rental locations||11|
|Popular suppliers||First Car Rental, Keddy, Thrifty, BLUU, Firefly|
|Popular car categories||Small cars, Medium cars, SUVs, Large cars|
|Lowest price||$18 per day|
Most Popular Car Models of Rental Suppliers
|First Car Rental||Suzuki Celerio||5||1||Small cars|
|First Car Rental||Nissan Almera||5||2||Medium cars|
|Thrifty||Hyundai Grand i10||5||1||Small cars|
|Keddy||Kia Picanto||5||1||Small cars|
|Firefly||Toyota Agya||5||1||Small cars|
|First Car Rental||Suzuki Swift||5||1||Small cars|
|First Car Rental||Honda Amaze||5||1||Small cars|
|First Car Rental||Toyota Quest||4||2||Large cars|
|Keddy||Volkswagen Polo||5||2||Small cars|
|First Car Rental||Volkswagen Polo||5||1||Medium cars|
Our Customers' Reviews
Because we want to make sure each review listed here is left by a real customer, we don’t have an option to post a review here. Instead, we ask each and every customer to leave a review after they return their rental car. This way, you know that all reviews are authentic, verified, and trustworthy.