Johannesburg Airport Guide
at Johannesburg Airport

Car Hire Johannesburg International Airport

O.R Tambo International Airport is the largest airport in South Africa, and is found in Johannesburg, the ‘City of Gold’. Johannesburg is also fondly referred to by locals as simply Jo’burg, or even ‘eGoli’. Its airport has also had a few names over the years, which include Jan Smuts Airport, as well as Johannesburg International Airport. Its current name, O.R Tambo International Airport, is in honor of a former South African National Congress President, Oliver Reginald Tambo. Johannesburg is a large and striking city filled with some impressive buildings and skyscrapers, as well as more nature orientated attractions, such as the Kruger National Park, which is a famous place to visit for many tourists. The best way to explore the city is in a rented car, and there are a couple of car hire companies at O.R Tambo Airport. Most of these companies are well-known around the world, and offer customers only the highest quality vehicles.

The car rental facilities at the airport are located in the multi-storey parkade building, just opposite of the domestic terminal. There are six terminal buildings at O.R Tambo International Airport, but these can be divided into areas for domestic passengers and the international departure and arrival areas. Customers who would like to rent a car can go straight to their chosen car hire company’s rental counters at the airport. Customers can also book online, from their chosen car rental company’s website. This is the most convenient way to ensure your ideal vehicle is ready and waiting for your arrival at the airport. Public transport in South Africa is not as extensive as in some other parts of the world, and certain forms of transport are not considered to be safe for tourists, therefore it is recommended to drive your own vehicle.

Some of the car hire companies available at Johannesburg’s airport include Sixt, Avis, National, Budget, Europcar, Alamo, Thrifty, Easycar and Hertz. These are all companies which have many years of experience in the industry, and have thousands of rental locations all over the world. Hertz has the largest car rental network, with over 8,000 locations, while the others all offer between two and four thousand rental offices in many different countries. The companies mentioned offer comprehensive websites which display all the vehicle categories available at O.R Tambo Airport, and information about their rental terms and conditions. An example of a smaller vehicle offered is the Kia Picanto 1.1, seating four people, but without much room for luggage, while medium sized cars include the Toyota Corolla Sedan and Honda Civic. Passengers arriving at the airport can also hire larger vans, such as the VW Microbus, seating eight or nine people, and Premium vehicles, which are most often manufactured by Mercedes.

Driving in Johannesburg, and South Africa in general, is relatively easy. The airport is located on the R24 Airport Freeway, which is accessed by the N3 Eastern Bypass, or from the R21 highway. The major highways running through Johannesburg include the N1, N3 and the N12. Road rules in South Africa do not permit speeding, or drunken driving, and there are speed traps and cameras in place to catch offenders. The speed limits in Johannesburg are as follows:  130 km/h on the highways, 100 km/h on the open roads and 60 km/h in urban areas. Petrol stations are located in frequent positions around the city, and for longer journeys, they can be found nearby all the smaller towns en route to the main cities of South Africa. Mainly cash is used for the payment of petrol, or Garage Cards, as petrol stations do not accept credit cards.

Although South Africa is not as dangerous as what some make it out to be, it is recommended to exercise caution when driving late at night, or in areas which are not as ‘high class’. Drivers should keep their doors locked, and be on the lookout for any suspicious looking characters who may be looking for smash and grab victims. Motorists should also never pick up hitchhikers, or offer a lift to anyone unfamiliar. Minibus taxis can be quite hazardous on South African roads, and their driving habits are quite unpredictable for tourists and locals alike. It is best to just keep out of their way, and not try and cause a scene. Passengers in the front seat should be wearing seat belts, and younger children are required to be securely seated within a vehicles. Most car hire companies offer the rental of extra equipment, such as baby or booster seats, or even satellite navigation systems. A GPS unit is wonderful to have, especially if you are unfamiliar with the area.

The primary renter at most of the car rental companies at O.R Tambo International Airport is required to be at least 21 years of age, and should have a valid drivers license which has been held in his/her country of residence for at least three years prior to the rental date. A young drivers surcharge may be applicable, and younger renters may also not be permitted to hire certain larger or specialty type vehicles. A major credit card is required in order to pay for the hire period, and adequate insurance coverage for the rented car is recommended.

Related Information
Alamo JohannesburgAuto Europa Johannesburg
Avis JohannesburgBudget Johannesburg
Dollar JohannesburgEasyCar Johannesburg
Europcar JohannesburgHertz Johannesburg
National JohannesburgSixt Johannesburg
Thrifty Johannesburg