Driving in Mauritius!!! Beware 1 st time visitors to Mauritius, there are numerous issues you may encounter.
10 points to consider when renting a car in Mauritius:
- Check to see if the car rental is an official registered car rental with the National Transport Authority in Mauritius. One easy way, but not fool proof, if the car is older than 5 years old it can no longer be rented out. If so, then dirt cheap i.e. Euro 15 and 20 per day. However, you are not covered by the insurance in case of accident.
- With the smaller car rental companies i.e. non-branded, check the validity of your car insurance and clarify in writing the coverage including excess for accidents (many are excessive & punitive). Excess should not be more than MUR 15,000 and is secured with your credit card.
- Inspect the car, tires, interior carefully and take images prior to signing contract.
- Obtain a good map, most roads are rural roads or tracks with deep pot holes, uneven surfaces and many speed humps (dangerous) which are being phased out slowly.
- Road signs are few and often small even on the so called motorway (actually a dual carriageway with a lot of roundabouts).
- DO NOT expect to drive like in Europe, driving habits in Mauritius are cultural. Drivers may overtake you on either side at excessive speeds which can be quite startling if it’s your first time. You will encounter “interesting” driving in Mauritius. Speed limits change frequently and there are speed cameras and police radar traps everywhere. Need it be said, drive on the LEFT as in UK! Beware there are few pavements or paths for the poor pedestrians however, it is getting better.
- Pay great attention to pedestrians walking on the road side, even in town. Expect vehicles in front of you and buses to stop right in front of you without prior warning! You may even see bus drivers crossing each other’s path, stop, greet each other, shake hands and talk for a minute or two.
- Drive defensively and slower than you normally would. Most towns have 60 kms per hour speed limit, in some area it should not be more than 30, so drive at your own discretion.
- Carry a camera or mobile phone to record any unforeseen incidents. Driving at NIGHT can be “dangerous”, cyclist with no lights, stray dogs, unlit cars, wondering people & children for example! Streets are not lit everywhere and some areas are very dark and bleak. If you are not used to driving on the left, it would be better NOT to drive at night.
- Finally, if you want to test your nerves (and driving skills) drive through GOODLANDS (“Little India”) shopping street!
Conclusion: Our personal opinion, unless you have experience driving abroad and particularly in 3rd world countries consider using taxi guides, who will take for a full day Euro 60.
Drive carefully and enjoy Mauritius like we do, needless to be said: DON’T drink & drive!
Driving in Mauritius
Driving through Mauritius | Speed limits in Mauritius | Defensive driving in Mauritius | Driving on the left side at roundabouts and road signs in Mauritius | Unofficial traffic signs in Mauritius | Parking coupons | Alternative parking in Port Louis as opposed to using coupons | Car Rentals | Petrol stations opening hours | Travelling by bus | Light Rail Travel - Metro Leger
More on driving in Mauritius
Statistics | Driving Environment | Driver Behaviour | Vehicles | Speed Limits | Traffic Signals | Road Signs | Road Markings | Kerb Markings | Roundabouts | Intersections | Pedestrian Crossings | Railway Crossings | Highways | City Driving | Rural Roads | Night Driving | Parking | Oddities
Fun Facts - Motorised transport in Mauritius: History
Drinking and driving in Mauritius: Alcohol limitations are 9 mcg (breathalyser) or 20mg of alcohol in the bloodstream and 27 mg in urine . As of October 2018. Read more.
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