Top 10 Car Hire Companies in South Africa

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If the allure of South Africa’s rich cultural tapestry and breathtaking vistas is calling, embarking on a road journey across this vibrant nation is unparalleled. Catering to the adventurers who yearn to explore everything from the bustling streets of Johannesburg to the scenic stretches of the Garden Route, the 10 best car hire companies in South Africa provide the quintessential companions for any itinerary. These car rental companies in South Africa are synonymous with diversity and accessibility, ensuring that whether you’re in need of a compact hatchback for city navigation or a rugged SUV for mountainous terrains, your needs are met with unwavering excellence.

Widely acknowledged for their top-notch services, these industry leaders blend convenience with reliability. Where ever you touch down, be it the humming airports or serene city centers, seamless rental experiences are guaranteed. From the iconic fleets of Avis to the homegrown prowess of AroundAboutCars , each name in the pantheon of South Africa car hire stands ready to elevate your travel experience.

Key Takeaways

  • Extensive variety of vehicles to fit any travel need or preference.
  • Convenient pickup locations, including major airports and city centers.
  • Rental companies providing excellent customer service around the clock.
  • Opportunities for both short-term and long-term car hire.
  • Availability of additional services such as GPS and insurance options.
  • Importance of considering company reputation and customer reviews.
  • Advanced booking advisable to secure the best rates and availability.

1. AroundAboutCars

AroundAboutCars, South Africa’s premier car rental service, is fully operational and prioritizes your safety. Discover the people behind our service in our ‘About Us’ section and explore our blog for insights on what sets us apart and the benefits of choosing us.

Celebrating over two decades as South Africa’s leading car rental provider, AroundAboutCars, established in 1995, has expanded to over 40 branches across the nation. We are your go-to source for affordable, quality car hire, offering value and personalized service.

Our car rental services across South Africa feature a fleet of well-maintained, regularly serviced vehicles to meet all your travel needs. Whether you’re planning a quick city tour or a family holiday, our wide range of cars and dedicated team will help you find the perfect vehicle.

Ease of booking is a cornerstone of our service, with online reservation options available. We also offer various add-ons like GPS systems, child seats, and insurance options to enhance your driving experience.

Our service extends to major airports for convenient pick-up and drop-off. We provide additional services like direct transfers, chauffeured services, economical one-way drop-offs, and partnerships for accommodation discounts, all backed by 24-hour nationwide emergency support. Our commitment goes beyond quality service; we offer unique benefits that elevate your car rental experience.

AroundAboutCars serves all major South African cities, including Cape Town, Johannesburg, Durban, Port Elizabeth, Pretoria, Nelspruit, and many others. For the most affordable and reliable car rental in South Africa, reach out to us via email or our booking form.

2. Avis Car Rental

As one of the most prominent vehicle rental companies at the global stage, Avis Car Rental has established itself as a trusted leader in the car rental industry. With roots dating back to 1946, Avis has expanded its operations to over 165 countries, supporting travelers with approximately 5,500 locations worldwide. This extensive reach includes providing some of the best car rental deals in South Africa, emphasizing not only quality but also affordable car rentals.

In the heart of South Africa, Avis delivers exceptional service round-the-clock at pivotal travel hubs like Johannesburg’s Or Tambo International Airport and Cape Town International Airport. Their commitment to customer satisfaction extends beyond the airports, with conveniently positioned city center offices known for their generous operating hours.

Understanding the diverse needs of each traveler, Avis presents a broad spectrum of vehicles to choose from, ensuring that clients have access to a car that best suits their itinerary and driving preferences. Avis’s customer support is at the forefront of their operations, offering an industry-leading experience that accompanies the traveler throughout their journey in South Africa. Their dedication to their patrons is reflected through comprehensive support and an undeniably smooth rental process.

Whether exploring the scenic routes along the Garden Route or navigating the bustling streets of Johannesburg, Avis stands out for blending affordable car rentals with impeccable service, making them a top-tier choice among vehicle rental companies in South Africa.

3. Budget Car Rental

Establishing itself as one of the best car rental companies globally, Budget Car Rental consistently provides competitive pricing and a wide-ranging fleet. The commitment to quality service at a reasonable price has secured its place among the preferred choices for travelers. From seamless car leasing services to flexible rental terms, Budget delivers options that cater to a variety of customer needs.

Prized for their strategic locations, Budget Car Rentals ensure convenient pick-up and drop-off points. In the bustling airports of Johannesburg and Cape Town, customers can locate the Budget Car Rental counters easily, ensuring swift service at all hours. The local offices in city centers guarantee accessibility and the opportunity to explore South Africa’s scenic routes with ease. Their customer-first approach simplifies the rental process, avoiding unnecessary complexities, and focusing on a smooth and swift customer experience.

Spearheading the market with unparalleled availability, Budget’s services are ripe for both domestic jaunts and international voyages across South Africa’s diverse landscapes. Whether it’s the thrust of urban adventure or the serenity of the countryside, Budget Car Rental’s fleet is equipped for the journey ahead, making it a strong contender for value-oriented travelers.

  • Convenient 24-hour airport access and central locations
  • Wide vehicle selection to suit various travel needs
  • Affordable pricing with no compromise on quality service

Travelers seeking reliability without exhausting their budget find refuge in Budget Car Rental’s streamlined services, establishing its reputation as a pillar within the rental industry.

4. Firefly Car Rental

For the budget-savvy traveler, Firefly Car Rental emerges as a standout provider amongst top car rental agencies. A division of the stalwart Hertz Corporation, Firefly delivers value without skimping on the quality that seasoned travelers demand. Their well-designed rental plans are tailored to ensure that you can maximize your travel budget without compromising on your journey’s comfort and flexibility.

With an expansive network that covers over 100 locations in 13 countries, Firefly is strategically positioned at major South African airports, ensuring that your rental process is seamless from the moment you land. The 24-hour availability in these transport hubs is particularly beneficial for international visitors or locals traveling on early or late flights. Aside from affordable car rentals, promptness and convenience stand as core aspects of the Firefly experience.

  • Economy to Standard models – Suitable for city trips and short drives
  • SUVs and Minivans – Ideal for family travel and longer journeys with more gear
  • Luxury Cars – Accessible opulence for those desiring a more refined experience

What elevates Firefly Car Rental above other value-focused brands is their commitment to customer satisfaction. Travelers can expect competitive pricing coupled with a service ethos that places their needs front and center—a compelling proposition for both domestic and international clientele seeking cost-effective car solutions in South Africa.

24/7 Airport AccessibilityNo waiting, timely pick-ups, and drop-offs
Competitive PricingMore budget for your travels
Customer-Centric ApproachA tailored rental experience
Diverse FleetVehicles to suit any travel need

In conclusion, when affordability intersects with quality, Firefly Car Rental is a key player. They have successfully demystified car rentals, offering transparent and affordable car rentals without hidden costs, reinforcing their status as one of the top car rental agencies for prudent travelers exploring South Africa.

5. Hertz Car Rental

Steeped in over a century of history, Hertz Car Rental stands as a beacon of automotive rental excellence, with a footprint encompassing some 150 countries, including the vibrant landscapes of South Africa. Esteemed for presenting some of the best car rental deals in South Africa, Hertz’s global network extends to over 10,200 locations, ensuring they remain at the forefront of the vehicle rental companies industry.

Convenience is key for the discerning traveler, and Hertz optimizes this by operating 24/7 at bustling air travel hubs. In South Africa, their strategic presence at major airports like Cape Town International allows for a seamless travel experience upon arrival. While the absence of city center offices in Johannesburg could be seen as a drawback, their availability in Cape Town adequately serves a wide spectrum of clients, accommodating an array of needs from short jaunts to extended excursions.

The Hertz fleet in South Africa boasts diverse vehicular solutions, tailored to sate the desires of both the minimalist traveler and the luxury seeker. Their commitment to customer service and competitive rates lays a foundation for a rental experience that is at once convenient, reliable, and tailored to individual preferences.

Whether a visitor to South Africa is in need of a nimble hatchback for city explorations, or a robust SUV for the sweeping savannas and thoroughfares of the Cape, Hertz’s wide-ranging fleet answers the call. The brand is synonymous with quality and convenience, rendering it an invaluable ally in the quest for the ideal vehicle to accompany a memorable African adventure.

6. First Car Rental

When it comes to car hire services in South Africa, First Car Rental stands out with its robust local expertise and extensive presence across the nation. As one of the best car rental companies, First Car Rental proudly operates from both bustling airports and strategically located urban branches, making it a convenient option for travelers. This company has built a formidable reputation for integrating hands-on customer service with a versatile fleet that exceeds 6,000 vehicles, effectively catering to a wide array of transportation needs.

For those looking to navigate the vivid terrains of South Africa, whether it’s the dynamic streets of Johannesburg or the scenic routes along the Cape, First Car Rental facilitates a seamless booking experience. The 24/7 availability at major airports enhances travel flexibility, providing peace of mind for passengers arriving during off-hours. The urban branches play a significant role for those who plan to start their journey from the heart of the cities. This accessibility ensures that whether you are flying in or situated locally, obtaining your rental car is hassle-free.

International travelers, in particular, find solace in the inclusive service offered by First Car Rental, which encompasses a user-friendly online reservation system. This feature allows customers from around the globe to secure their preferred mode of transport well in advance of their trip, thereby aligning their travel logistics with their itinerary plans. In a market rich with options, First Car Rental’s commitment to customer satisfaction and broad vehicle selection fortifies its standing among the best car rental companies in South Africa.

7. Europcar Car Rental

With roots in the romantic city of Paris, Europcar has evolved to become a leading force in the world of automotive rentals. Founded in 1949, Europcar influences the industry by extending a vast array of car rental options to discerning clients in South Africa and beyond. A hallmark of excellence, Europcar not only promises variety across its fleet, catering to every traveler’s needs, but it also ensures that each customer touchpoint is built around convenience and seamless service.

Visiting South Africa offers an abundance of experiences, and Europcar enhances your journey by providing straightforward access to car rentals directly at the airport, with 24-hour services for late arrivals and early departures. Their commitment to customer satisfaction is further seen in their strategic placement of branches within the beating hearts of South African cities, embodying the ethos of customer-centricity and wide accessibility that one expects from premier car rental companies in South Africa.

Europcar’s dynamic fleet ranges from comfortable standard vehicles ideal for city commutes to luxurious cars that can add an extra layer of elegance to your travels along the picturesque coasts of South Africa. This variety ensures that every traveler’s preferences and expectations are met, affirming Europcar’s place as a top choice for South Africa car hire. Whether you are in South Africa for business or leisure, Europcar provides the wheels to match your itinerary.

Emphasizing on delivering a holistic and memorable rental experience, Europcar’s rental process is crafted to be as streamlined as possible. Here are some of the reasons why Europcar is a leading car hire service:

  • Extensive Fleet: An array of options from economical hatchbacks to luxury sedans.
  • Accessibility: Easily reachable city and airport locations.
  • Customer Service: Renowned for responsive and helpful customer support.
  • Flexible Hours: Round-the-clock operations to accommodate all travel schedules.
  • Luxury Collection: For those desiring high-end cars, Europcar offers a taste of luxury.

Discover the dynamism of South Africa with a reliable companion on the road. Europcar stands ready to serve all your vehicular needs, making every trip unforgettable.

8. Kayak Car Rentals

When planning an excursion to the majestic landscapes of South Africa, finding the best car rental deals in South Africa can be a paramount concern for savvy travelers. This is where Kayak Car Rentals enters the stage as a game-changer. Rather than providing cars directly, Kayak operates as a pivotal search engine, aggregating car rental companies South Africa has to offer, thereby presenting an extensive array of options to its users.

The convenience of utilizing Kayak lies in its comprehensive comparison tools, which have been meticulously designed to allow travelers the luxury of accessing various rental options from prominent rental companies—all at their fingertips. Kayak’s platform empowers customers to secure their preferred vehicle efficiently and with confidence, knowing that they have had the opportunity to explore a range of competitive options.

Through Kayak, potential renters can not only view a spectrum of rental rates but also the distinct features and policies of each option, tailoring their choice to suit individual travel plans and budget requirements. This model of operation eschews the need for Kayak to maintain physical rental fleets, instead delivering a service that emphasizes flexibility and user empowerment.

The service provided by Kayak goes beyond mere price comparison—it is a means to unlock the best car rental deals in South Africa, providing clients with a transparent and accessible approach to car rental arrangements. A testament to their innovative strategy in the travel industry, Kayak Car Rentals ensures that no matter the destination in South Africa, you are well-equipped to navigate the rich tapestry of this diverse and vibrant land.

9. Xtreme Car Rentals

When considering affordable car rentals while traveling through South Africa’s vibrant cities, Xtreme Car Rentals stands out for their commitment to providing a spectrum of vehicles suitable for any traveler’s requirement. Their presence spans the principal cities of Cape Town, Johannesburg, Pretoria, and Durban, ensuring travelers are met with car leasing services tailored to their unique travel itineraries.

The convenience of Xtreme Car Rentals starts with a user-friendly booking process and extends to the point where customers are handed the keys to a vehicle that perfectly aligns with their expectations. Whether one desires a compact car for city travel or a luxurious SUV for a comfortable long-distance journey, Xtreme Car Rentals’ diverse fleet provides ample choice.

Car TypeStarting Daily RateFeatures
EconomyZAR 299Fuel-efficient, Compact Size
StandardZAR 399Comfortable Seating, Air Conditioning
SUVZAR 499Spacious, Enhanced Safety Features
LuxuryZAR 799Premium Interiors, Advanced Tech

If you are planning a trip and require a vehicle that will provide not just transportation, but also the confidence of a well-maintained and reliable car, turn to Xtreme Car Rentals. Enjoy the seamless blend of affordability and quality service that caters to both budget-conscious explorers and those wishing to splurge on a premium driving experience.

10. Tempest Car Rental

As one of the top car rental agencies in South Africa, Tempest Car Rental prides itself on delivering exceptional car hire services in South Africa. Since its establishment in 1986, Tempest Car Rental has become a trusted name, recognized for its economical pricing and an extensive fleet that offers over 3,000 quality vehicles to customers. Catering to diverse driving preferences and itineraries, they facilitate both brief escapades and extended explorations.

Understanding travelers’ needs for convenience and efficiency, Tempest also provides valuable add-ons such as GPS unit rentals to navigate the scenic routes of South Africa with ease. Each car rental experience is tailored to ensure satisfaction and comfort, whether clients require a compact car for bustling city streets or a spacious people carrier for group adventures.

Tempest Car Rental’s commitment to customer service and competitive rates has established their reputation among both domestic and international travelers. Offering a range of vehicles from economical models to spacious carriers, they continue to lead the way in South Africa’s car rental industry.

The variety of vehicles available caters perfectly to South Africa’s varied terrains and driving conditions, making Tempest Car Rental a versatile option for travelers. From the wine lands of the Western Cape to the majestic Drakensberg mountains, Tempest ensures that each journey begins with the right vehicle, affirming their status as a premier rental service provider.

Choosing the Right Vehicle for Your Journey In South Africa

Embarking on a South African journey offers an opportunity for adventure and unmatched experiences. To fully embrace the vibrant terrain from the bustling streets of Cape Town to the windswept beaches and the iconic Table Mountain, it is crucial to select a hire that meets all your travel needs. With a roster of the 10 best car hire companies in South Africa, you can readily find a vehicle that aligns with your itinerary demands, budget, and comfort level.

Choosing from the best car rental companies not only ensures a wide variety of vehicles but also access to comprehensive services that enhance your travel experience. These may include essential vehicle cover, reliable roadside assistance, and offers of inclusive mileage, considering that long stretches of breath-taking scenery could be part of your route. Local companies with a deep understanding of the South Africa car hire landscape can advice you on the best choices for navigating both urban and rural terrains.

  • Duration of Rental: How long you’ll need the vehicle can affect the type of deal you should look for. Short term rentals might offer different advantages compared to longer-term hires.
  • Type of Vehicle: Consider the size and capabilities of the car, especially if you’re planning to traverse off-road areas or mountainous regions.
  • Fuel Efficiency: Given the vast distances that can be covered, fuel-efficient cars could significantly reduce your overall spending.
  • Rental Inclusions: Investigate what is included in the rental price, such as insurance, maintenance, and roadside assistance.
  • Pick-up and Drop-off Locations: For added convenience, assess the flexibility of locations for picking up and returning the vehicle, especially if your journey isn’t a round trip.

The journey ahead is as important as the destination when travelling in South Africa. By aligning with a reputable car rental service, you can assure peace of mind and an enjoyable drive, allowing you to focus on the stunning landscapes and rich cultural experiences that await.

Advantages of Renting from Leading Car Hire Companies in South Africa

Exploring the rich landscapes of South Africa becomes an effortless endeavor when utilizing the top-tier car hire services South Africa offers. By engaging with esteemed vehicle rental companies, travelers open a portal to extensive benefits, ensuring their journey through majestic terrains like the Drakensberg mountains or the glistening coastline of the Western Cape is adorned with comfort and efficiency.

Selection Diversity: One of the primary benefits of choosing established car rental firms is the availability of a diverse fleet. Travelers can select vehicles that range from economy models for the budget-conscious to premium luxury cars for the discerning traveler. Whether it’s cruising the bustling streets of Johannesburg or undertaking an epic road trip along the Garden Route, there is a vehicle to suit every taste and need.

Convenience Across Locations: Leading car rental services comprehend the essence of convenience, thus offering a broad network of pick-up and return locations. With services available at major airports, city centers, and select remote areas, the ease of accessing your rental car is unmatched, facilitating a smooth start and end to your travels.

Comprehensive Services: These companies extend beyond just the basics of renting a car; additional services are often at your disposal, enhancing the overall rental experience. Options like chauffeur services cater to those seeking a guided, personalized experience, while GPS rentals assist explorers in charting their course with precision.

Loyalty Benefits: Frequent renters can benefit from customer loyalty programs, which offer rewards like discounted rates, vehicle upgrades, and quicker reservation processes. This recognition of loyalty can significantly enhance the value received from your car rental choice.

Prepared for International Guests: Travelers from abroad need not fret, as these vehicle rental providers are well-equipped to serve an international clientele. With the requisite insurance and knowledge of the need for an international driver’s permit, these enterprises stand ready to assure a hassle-free experience.

Seasonal Considerations: The festive season witnesses an upsurge in demand for car hire services. To secure the best car rental deals in South Africa, forward-thinking planning is essential. Early booking is advisable to ensure the availability of your preferred vehicle and to avoid any inconvenience during these peak periods.

In summary, selecting esteemed car rental agencies in South Africa yields numerous advantages that cater to every aspect of a traveler’s needs. From the breadth of their car fleets to the ease of pick-up locations, every detail is finely tuned to ensure that your voyage is as smooth as the open African road ahead.


The exploration of South Africa’s enchanting landscapes is made infinitely more accessible with the wealth of car rental companies South Africa provides. Each company we’ve examined offers a unique set of benefits, tailored to various traveler requirements, whether it’s for a high-powered business trip or a casual scenic drive along the coastline. The prominence of affordable car rentals ensures that access to the wonders of South Africa is not confined to luxury seekers but is available to an expansive array of visitors with different budgetary constraints.

Our journey through the top car hire services has illuminated the importance of a harmonious balance between value, quality, and convenience. From sprawling metropolises like Johannesburg to the coastal beauty of Cape Town, the operational flexibility of these firms, including office locations and car leasing services, is paramount in making informed rental decisions. Savvy travelers take heed of not just pricing but also the comprehensiveness of services offered, including customer support and operational hours, which play a pivotal role in enhancing the travel experience.

In conclusion, the culmination of meticulous research into South Africa’s car rental market reveals the criticality of thoughtful selection. Whether seeking a modest hatchback or a luxurious convertible, the key to a seamless South African road adventure lies in choosing a rental partner that aligns with your itinerary, budget, and expectations. Before embarking on your journey, a thorough comparison of these highlighted service providers will steer you toward a delightful and memorable sojourn.


What are some of the 10 best car hire companies in South Africa?

Some of the top car rental companies in South Africa include Avis Car Rental, Bidvest Car Rental, Budget Car Rental, Firefly Car Rental, Hertz Car Rental, First Car Rental, Europcar Car Rental, Kayak Car Rentals, Xtreme Car Rentals, and Tempest Car Rental.

Can I find affordable car rentals in South Africa?

Yes, many car rental companies in South Africa such as Avis, Firefly Car Rental, Xtreme Car Rentals, and Budget Car Rental offer affordable options for travelers, providing various deals and packages to suit different budgets.

Are there car rental companies that offer vehicle rental services at South Africa’s airports?

Yes, companies like Avis, Bidvest, Budget, First Car Rental, Hertz, and Europcar offer convenient 24-hour service at major airports such as Johannesburg’s Or Tambo International Airport and Cape Town International Airport.

Which car rental companies offer the best deals in South Africa?

Avis, Budget, Hertz, Kayak Car Rentals, and Europcar are known for offering competitive rates and best car rental deals in South Africa. Travelers can also use comparison tools like Kayak to find the best prices across these and other rental companies.

Are there any car hire services that also offer car leasing in South Africa?

Yes, Budget Car Rental and Xtreme Car Rentals are examples of companies that offer both short-term car rentals and longer-term car leasing services in South Africa.

How can I ensure I’m choosing a top car rental agency in South Africa?

Look for car rental companies with a wide range of vehicles, extensive location coverage, 24/7 customer support, and excellent customer reviews. Bidvest, Firefly, and Tempest Car Rental are known as some of the top car rental agencies in the country.

Is it possible to rent a car for a road trip along South Africa’s Garden Route?

Absolutely, many of the listed car hire companies have branches across South Africa, making it easy to rent a car for a scenic road trip along routes such as the famous Garden Route.

Do car rental companies in South Africa provide additional services like GPS and insurance?

Yes, many car hire services in South Africa, including Europcar and Tempest Car Rental, offer additional services like GPS navigation systems, insurance coverage, and roadside assistance for a more comprehensive rental experience.

Can international travelers rent cars in South Africa?

International travelers can rent cars from most vehicle rental companies in South Africa provided they have a valid international driver’s permit and meet the necessary rental requirements set by the company.

What factors should I consider when choosing a car to hire in South Africa?

When selecting a car to hire, consider the type of vehicle you need, rental cost, insurance coverage, the inclusivity of mileage, availability of roadside assistance, and additional services such as car seats or GPS navigation to suit your travel plans.

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