If you need a set of wheels for your next visit in Mauritius, you’ve come to the right place. We don’t provide car rental services, but we strongly recommend renting a vehicle if you are planning to visit the numerous attractions and get completely immersed in local life. However, there are some safety information you should know. Here is everything you need to know before renting a car in Mauritius.
Mauritius is a rather small country but it has a reliable road network of 2066 kilometre. All roads are free of use and the only turnpike you’ll find is the one at the SSR International Airport. As you would expect, there is a prohibition against cell phone use while driving and the consumption of alcohol while driving, which are subject to substantial fine and even imprisonment. If you’re going out to party or a heavy phone user, a good option should be chauffeur-driven cars.
Driving is on the left and most traffic signs are displayed in English and French. It is also recommended that the driver holds a driving license with a minimum of 1 year driving experience. This is the reason why many car rental companies in Mauritius require a minimum age of 21 years old to rent a car. Renting a vehicle can be very practical. Whether you want to explore the island, avoid pigeonhole excursions or just love to drive on holidays, car rental is the perfect solution in many situations. But before booking any car at any car rental agency, we’ve compiled the best tips for you to find your perfect vehicle.
How to choose a car rental company?
While you might find some good deals on car rental in Mauritius, we recommend you pay attention to ads that promise you a vehicle for 15 euros per day, because you often have to add paper fees, insurance, mileage. Furthermore, be aware that in general, the more the agency is known, the less problems you are like to have. For example, in the event of a breakdown, it will be difficult to obtain a replacement vehicle if there is no agency covering you within a radius of 50 km.
Mauritius has some international car rental agencies, a big name like Avis is always recommended. On the other hand, some smaller companies like Mauritius Car Hire also present good deals on vehicles whether it is for short or long-term contracts. You can also look deeper and search on websites like TripAdvisor for customer reviews, that is usually a great indication of the service you can expect. But in general terms, the vast majority of car rental companies offer good services to the tourism industry.
Another good thing to note that if the car rental agency has a hub at the SSR International Airport, that’s a trustworthy sign. Some agencies will offer you a car upon arrival at the airport if you want to avoid airport transfer costs usually charged by hotels. Parking is generally free of use at hotels and villas.
Choosing the right vehicle
Choosing a rental car is different from buying a car, but there are quite some similarities. The categories of car models are designated by the letters of the alphabets A, B, C, D and so on. Category A being the smallest cars of the fleet and category J can be a crossover SUV. Note that when using a booking engine, sometimes you might be booking the category instead of the model. Be sure to read through the details to not get surprised if the vehicle ordered is not the model available but another one of the same category.
You will obviously consider your budget, but also the number of passengers! Be aware, however, that the price difference between two categories can be very small, so do not deprive yourself. That said, you should also take note that the most economical vehicles are the small Japanese cars like Nissan, Suzuki and others like Hyundai. The price of petrol is around 1£ per litre in Mauritius. We recommend you choose a small vehicle is don’t have many passengers. Why? Because coastal roads are usually narrow and in general Mauritian roads are not made for fast cars.
“Fill up pickup and return” is the most common practice among renters, and also one that we recommend. When picking up or receiving vehicle delivery, you receive the car with the tank full and you will also have to return it with the tank full. In other words, you only pay for what you have consumed.
If this is the condition, the renter will have to check in front of you that the tank is full. If you do not return the vehicle with the full, the missing fuel will be charged by the renter, plus service charges: beware, the note can quickly rise in this case!
Options or extras
If you’re looking to save up some cash, you should stick with the basics. But if you think a GPS or a navigation system would be helpful, you can consider some options offered by some car rental agencies. Other extras include surf racks, child seats, touchscreens and others. When booking your vehicle online or at a car rental counter, be sure to select options that will most benefit you.
Unlimited mileage is the perfect way to take full advantage of your cheap car rental to get where you want without ever having to worry about the distances travelled! This is especially true if you are planning to rent a vehicle for medium or long term in Mauritius.
Pickup and collect points
The price of car rentals depends on the location of the vehicle. Indeed, the more cars available, the lower the price. Be sure to check availability at several places of departure. Also think about where to return the vehicle: most of the time it will cost you more if you do not return the car where you rented it! Some operators may charge a special fee for airport delivery.
The best piece of advice we can give to you is to ask for all details or read through terms and conditions whether when booking online or reserving your vehicle at a counter. We hope you have great holidays in Mauritius.