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Car Hire in East London
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        About East London

        East London is a city in South Africa. It is located on the southeastern coast of South Africa, more specifically in the Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality of the Eastern Cape Province. East London is situated between the Buffalo River and the Nahoon River. What makes the city special is that East London is home to the country's only river port.

        Thanks to its location on the Indian Ocean coast, warm climate and great beaches, East London is a very popular destination among Africans and also tourists and travellers from all over the world. East London is actually located on the "Sunshine Coast." The Sunshine Coast is known for its beautiful, unpolluted and uncrowded beaches.

        Thanks to the rivers and the ocean, there are so many different things to do here. From relaxing on the beaches in the shade of a tree with a cocktail in hand, to a more active holiday with many water sports to choose from. There are also many different cultural, historical and religious sites worth visiting here in East London. Of course, there is also wonderful nature around the city, and you can always go on safari for a day and see the wildlife.

        But there are also many other things you can see and do here in East London or Buffalo City, the second name for East London. There are many great museums and other cultural and historical sites that are really worth visiting. Many people say that this is a forgotten city in South Africa because it is not as popular as other coastal cities in this country. But in recent years, East London has experienced a significant boom in tourism and is now a very popular destination in the country. So if you are taking a road trip through South Africa, be sure to put East London on your list of cities to spend a few days in - you will not regret it. Buckle up and drive safely!

        Basic info and car hire in East London

        • Location: Eastern Cape Province, South Africa
        • Population: 267,007
        • Official language: Ndebele, Pedi, Sotho, Swati, Tsonga, Tswana, Venda, Xhosa, Zulu and Afrikaans. Another official language is English, which is the primary language used in parliamentary and state discourse.
        • Currency: South African Rand
        • Weather: East London has an oceanic climate
        • Internet coverage: Hotels, bars, restaurants, and cafés offer Wi-Fi.
        • Road conditions:  Most roads in East London are in good condition.
        • Car hire in East London:  The most common pick-up point for vehicles in East London is at the East London Airport. Please note that prices vary frequently. It is best to book a car 3 to 8 weeks in advance of your desired pick-up date - this will ensure you get the cheapest rental rate. Alternatively, it is also possible to find cheap last-minute car hire. Find the best deal on car hire in East London!

         Driving in East London

        Driving in East London can be a very nice experience. This city is nowhere near as crowded as larger African cities, so there are also far fewer cars on the city streets. There can be traffic jams during the high season, but otherwise, the traffic in East London is very smooth. The roads are in good condition and signage is frequent and clearly visible. If you want to avoid problems while driving in South Africa, you should follow the rules and obey the traffic signs.

        It can sometimes be difficult to find a parking space in the city. Our tip is to always look for an official parking place and not to park your car just anywhere in the city.

        The infrastructure is well maintained and the views are breathtaking, so you can expect a great travel experience when driving through East London. But of course, not all roads are perfect and if you want to explore more rural areas and villages, you should expect that roads are not as well maintained and signage is not as visible and frequent as in bigger cities and on main roads.

        It is also important to be extra careful when travelling in South Africa as there are often wild animals on the road. In larger cities there are also many pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, etc., so you should be careful here as well.

        • Age limits: The minimum age to rent a car is 18 years old and you need to have had your driver’s license for at least two years. You are required by law to carry your Drivers Licence when driving. It is possible that some suppliers have a policy that anyone under the age of 23 is not eligible for vehicle hire.
        • International Driving Permit:  If your driving license is not issued in English, you need to provide an official translation or have an International Driving Permit (IDP). You are required by law to carry your Drivers Licence when driving. An International Driving Permit is required in addition to a National Driving License if the National Driving License you or any of the Additional Drivers hold is not clearly identifiable as a Driving License, eg, it is in a non-Latin alphabet (eg Arabic, Chinese, Cyrillic, Japanese). It can also depend on the country or car rental company you are renting with. If you have found a car on our website, you can press the rental terms link from the supplier for more information about driving license requirements.  
        • Additional papers:  A credit card in the name of the main driver needs to be presented. A security deposit may be required while renting a car so the credit card must have sufficient funds. You can find details about the security deposit listed while booking the vehicle as well as on your voucher. It is important to have a valid driving license with the name of the main driver as well as additional drivers when it applies.Identification(passport or ID), and valid proof of insurance. When you pick up your rental car you need to have your voucher with you.  
        • Additional requirements:  Glasses (in case you need glasses, you must always have a spare pair in the car), light bulbs (which are usually already in the car and are provided by the car rental company), and 2 warnings triangles, First aid kit, fire extinguisher.
        • Children in the car:  In South Africa, it is illegal to travel in a car with a child under 3 years old not strapped into an approved child safety seat. Children must not sit in the front of a car without a suitable restraint system. Up to three years old they can sit in a rear-facing child seat where the airbag is disabled. Up to twelve years old they must sit in the rear of the car with an appropriate booster seat. Ask when booking for a suitable system to be included when you collect your hire car.
        • Driving side of the road: Left-hand
        • Lights:  You must turn your lights on any time you can't see at least 1000 feet ahead. Use your low beam headlights whenever it is raining.
        • General speed limits: Speeding is taken seriously in South Africa. There are speed cameras in most towns and cities as well as on the outskirts of urban areas. Speed limits in the city are 60 km/h (37 mph), on rural roads 100km/h, and on the highways 120 km/h (74 mph), road signs alert drivers if the limit in a particular area is different from this.

        Car Hire in East London

        Most popular car hire at East London

        The most selected hire car in East London is the Fiat 500, Renault Clio or Opel Corsa. Renault Captur is also being a popular option. The most popular car types in East London are mini and economy. 

        Popular Driving Routes

        Popular One-Way car hire from East London

        Want to rent a car for a one-way trip? No worries! Orbit Car Hire offers a variety of one-way Car Hire options in many locations outside of East London. One-way car rental is ideal for cross-town or cross-country travel, saving time by not returning to your original location. Start your reservation with Orbit Car Hire and find great options on one-way car hire at locations across the South Africa.

        • East London-Peddie (88km with approximately 1 hour of drive)

        • East London-Morgans Bay (88km with approximately 1 hour of drive)

        • East London-Port Alfred (132km with approximately 1,5 hours of drive)

        • East London-Port Elizabeth (285km with approximately 3-3,5 hours of drive)

        Popular day trips from East London

        Inkwenkwezi Game Drive, Port Alfred, Fort Beaufort, Musina, Serowe, Palapye, Giyani, Phalaborwa...

        What to see in East London

        East London is not as popular as some other major cities in South Africa, but that does not mean it is not attractive enough. There are actually countless amazing things to see and do here. There are many different cultural, historical and religious sites that are worth visiting, but there are also some wonderful natural beauties that you simply cannot miss when staying in East London. So, before you come here, do some research and make a plan for your visit.

        For example, one of the places you should definitely not miss is Nahoon Beach. This beach is very popular because of its fine sand and crystal clear water. Aside from Nahoon Beach, there are some other popular and great beaches in the city that you should visit. These include Eastern Beach, Orient Beach, Bonza Bay Beach, Igoda Beach, Gulu Beach and Cove Rock Beach. You can also indulge in many great activities at the beaches of East London. There are many water sports like surfing, diving, water skiing, fishing, dolphin and whale watching, etc.

        There are also many activities you can do here away from the beaches, for example, Hiking, horseback riding, cycling...

        Of course, when you are in South Africa, you should also visit some nature reserves. Here are some of the best places for this kind of activity here in East London: Camdeboo National Park, Mpgongo Private Game Reserve, Inkwenkwesi Private Game Reserve and Mountain Zebra National Park.

        Other places you can visit in East London: East London Aquarium, East London Museum, Hemingways Mall...

        Drive your rental car beyond East London

        South Africa is officially called the Republic of South Africa. This huge country is 23rd on the list of the most populous nations in the world. The interesting thing about South Africa is that it has three capitals. The executive, judicial and legislative branches are based in Pretoria, Bloemfontein and Cape Town respectively. The largest city in the country is Johannesburg.

        If you are planning a road trip through South Africa, you can be sure that a fantastic experience awaits you. There are so many fabulous destinations for a road trip here in this country and there are also some spectacular roads that you will experience while driving through South Africa. The most famous of these is the Garden Route, which stretches between Mossel Bay in the west and Storms River in the east. It is about 200 kilometres long and offers an unforgettable experience with its many rivers, lakes, the sea, mountains, forests and much more.

        South Africa is known for the many different things you can see and do here. The country is probably best known for its amazing landscapes, diverse and unique wildlife, vibrant cities and unique culture. But in recent years, South Africa has seen significant growth in many different areas of tourism. For example, there are some world-famous wineries here that are also fantastic tourist attractions.

        When in Southern Africa, be sure to visit one of the many safari parks that exist throughout the country. You can learn a lot when visiting these parks, especially about wildlife conservation, which is also very important. There are hundreds of national parks in South Africa and you should definitely visit at least one of them. A stay here in the midst of wild animals is a very special experience. The nights in these parks are especially entertaining and unique. This is an experience you will never forget in your life. The most famous safari park in the country is Kruger National Park, which is home to incredible diversity and tons of amazing wildlife, including the "Big Five" (lions, leopards, elephants, rhinos and Cape buffalo). But of course, there are many more parks in the country, here are some of them: Hluhluwe and iMfolozi National Park - It is located in the east of the country and is known for its rhino populations. Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park - It is located on the border with Botswana in the north and is known for its black-maned lions. Addo Elephant National Park - Located near Port Elizabeth on the south coast, this is a good choice for safaris on your own. Pilanesburg National Park & Game Reserve - Home to the Big 5, the park can be visited on a day trip from Johannesburg if you are short on time.

        But there is another fantastic option for wildlife lovers. You can go whale watching, as South Africa is considered one of the best places for this kind of activity. The best time for whale watching is from June to November. There are several companies that offer and organize whale watching tours. The best and most reliable ones are Southern Right Charters, Hermanus Whale Cruises and Xplora Tours. Another nice activity you can do here is, of course, scuba diving. There are several centres for this sport spread all over South Africa. It is a great place both for beginners, who can take various courses here and for the more experienced divers, who will find some fantastic dive sites here.

        For those who prefer a more active vacation, there are plenty of options here in South Africa. One of the most popular options is undoubtedly surfing. There are many fantastic beaches for surfing in both the Atlantic and Indian Oceans, providing endless opportunities for surfers from all over the world. The most popular destination for surfers is Jeffrey's Bay, located on the south coast near Port Elizabeth. Other famous places for surfing are Dungeons, Long Beach, Durban...

        If you are not interested in surfing, then you should look for an activity in the Drakensberg region. The Drakensberg is the highest mountain range in South Africa and there are numerous opportunities for hiking, climbing, mountain biking, trekking, etc. Some of the best places in the Drakensberg are Rainbow Gorge: An easy and beautiful two-hour hiking trail in the Cathedral Peak area. Plowman's Kop: A half-day hike with a steep climb. Chain Ladders Hike: A challenging one-day hike with ladders attached to the rock wall. Cathedral Peak: This hike is best climbed with a guide. Giant's Cup Trail: Usually a five-day hike.

        East London

        Visit East London

        Where to eat, drink, and party in East London

        African cuisine is a mix of cooking styles and it's no different here in East London. There are many fantastic places to eat here. You can choose from different menus. There are many places where you can eat traditional African food, but you can also find some great places where you can order menus from other parts of the world.

        Best restaurant in East London

        Sanook Cafe

        Sanook Eatery

        Grazia Fine Food & Wine

        Irana Indian Cuisine

        Lavader Blue Market

        Windmill Roadhouse

        FAQ

        What you need to know about renting a car

        faq
        What do I need to rent a car in South Africa?

        credit card in the name of the main driver needs to be presented. A security deposit may be required while renting a car so the credit card must have sufficient funds. You can find details about the security deposit listed while booking the vehicle as well as on your voucher. It is important to have a valid driving license with the name of the main driver as well as additional drivers when it applies. An International Driving Permit is required in addition to a National Driving License if the National Driving License you or any of the Additional Drivers hold is not clearly identifiable as a Driving License, eg, it is in a non-Latin alphabet (eg Arabic, Chinese, Cyrillic, Japanese). It can also depend on the country or car rental company you are renting with. If you have found a car on our website, you can press the rental terms link from the supplier for more information about driving license requirements. You will need to have identification with you such as a passport and ID cards. When you pick up your rental car you need to have your voucher with you.

        How old do I need to be to rent a car in South Africa?

        The minimum age to rent a car for Economy groups are 19 years old renters. For Compact, Intermediate car groups are available for 21 years old renters. Full-size vans and standard car Groups are available for 25 years old renters. With some suppliers for people over 75 years of age. Young driver surcharges may apply to many car rental companies for people under 21 years of age.

        Do I need car insurance in South Africa?

        Insurances are very important when renting a car and can be different between countries. When renting a car in South Africa with Orbit Car Hire the prices will include mandatory insurance in the country.

        Do I need a credit card to rent a car in South Africa?

        In most cases, a credit card is required to be presented in the name of the main driver. A security deposit may be required when renting a car so it is important to have sufficient funds on the credit card. When searching for a car at Orbit you can see credit card requirements from all our suppliers.

        Do I need an international driving license in South Africa?

        If your driver's license is not issued in English, you need to provide an official translation or have an International Driving Permit (IDP). You are required by law to carry your Drivers Licence when driving.

        How do I find the cheapest car hire in South Africa?

        You can find cheap car hire by comparing prices with all major car rentals at Orbit. A good idea can be to book in advance as the prices can increase closer to the travel period. 

        What is the cheapest rental car in South Africa?

        You will find the mini car category or economy cars to be the cheapest car categories. Vehicles such as Hyundai I10 and Fiat Panda often provide the best prices. 

        What is the best car rental company in South Africa?

        You may find excellent service provided by companies such as Hertz, Firefly, Europcar and Keddy.

        What types and makes of rental car deals can I find in South Africa?

        You will find car types such as mini, economy, compact, Full-Size, and luxury cars. Popular rental cars are Hyundai i20, Toyota, and Kia Picanto.

        Does my rental car have unlimited mileage when I rent a car in South Africa?

        Most car rentals in South Africa offer unlimited mileage in their offers. 

        Find The Best Car Hire Companies In East London

        • Car Hire with Keddy by Europcar
        • Europcar
        • Firefly Car Hire
        • Green Motion Car Rental
        • Hertz Car Hire
        • Sixt Rent a Car

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