A Guide to Driving in Uganda: Rules, Requirements, Safety

A Guide to Driving in Uganda: Rules, Requirements, Safety Foreigners. Getting around Uganda.
Will you be driving a safari in Uganda on your own? Important details for tourists who choose to drive alone are included in this guide. Give it a good read. Read up on the essentials of driving in Uganda. Including suggestions for safe driving practices, insurance for rented cars, and emergency assistance. We have you covered here at Car Rental Drives Africa.

How are the road conditions for driving in Uganda

Roads in Uganda are in remarkably good shape when compared to other African countries. From Kampala, the main roads leading to every part of the country are paved with smooth asphalt. However, be prepared for numerous speed bumps and the rare pothole.

Because of the numerous speed bumps, the necessity to slow down when going through villages, and the fact that you will likely want to take numerous pictures, you normally don’t achieve more than 60 km/hour, even though the asphalt roads are in decent shape. The view from the roadway is just as breathtaking. Do not make the typical tourist’s error of attempting to see too much on a single vacation. Put Google Maps to shame and instead study our table of driving distances and times carefully.

Would you like to know which vehicle is ideal for driving in Uganda? The majority of your driving in Uganda will be on asphalt roads, thus we recommend the Toyota Hilux as the most comfortable option in our fleet for these conditions.

To reach your lodge or park entrance gate, the final leg of your daily journey typically involves driving on gravel roads. Dirt roads are used for off-road driving within the parks. These roads’ conditions change with the seasons and become much more treacherous when it rains. As opposed to our other African road trip destinations, off-road driving in Uganda is the most accessible and rarely technical. We will show you how to turn on the 4×4 when we hand you over the keys to your automobile. In addition, the vehicle comes with a car and driving manual.

Do I need an international driving license in Uganda

A valid driver’s license from another country is not required in Uganda. A legitimate driver’s license from your nation of origin will do. Never get behind the wheel without your driver’s license.

At what side of the road should I drive

On the left. The left side of the road is the one that drivers use in Uganda.

Tips you NEED to know for traveling Uganda

Tips to drive safe in Uganda

Speed limit

  • speed limit on highways is 80 km/h. Considering the weight of a Landcruiser or Hilux loaded down with camping gear and bags, this may appear inadequate. Because of the greater stopping distance, law enforcement agencies consider safari vehicles to be trucks.
  • In populated areas, you should not exceed 50 km/hour. Keep in mind that major thoroughfares also go through populated areas, so slow down.
  • 30 to 40 kilometers per hour within national parks. It all depends on the tracks.

For your peace of mind, we have installed auto trackers on all of our vehicles. As soon as any of them exceed the posted speed limit, we will be notified immediately.

  • Drive cautiously. Minibus drivers are known to dart around blind curves in an attempt to pass, whereas large coaches have an inflated sense of superiority. As a result, you should constantly check your rearview mirror and, if required, pull over to let the minibus or coach to pass.
  • Keep your speed down to a minimum. 50 kilometers within cities and 80 kilometers on highways.
  • There are several unmarked speed bumps around the nation, particularly around town entrances, so be careful.
  • Spots may be rather large. If you collide with them, your vehicle can sustain damage and even get a flat tire.
  • In every urban or suburban area, you should always secure your vehicle. Do not leave anything of value in your car unless someone is there to get it.
  • It is imperative to park in a designated place at all times. Make sure there is a safe parking lot on the premises of any town hostels you are considering staying at for the night.
  • Drive during the day. In the dark, potholes aren’t easy to spot, and oncoming traffic utilizes their blazing headlights to blind you.
  • No matter what happens, you should always be prepared with some money, water, and a fully charged cell phone.

Are there restricted areas for self-drive

Driving in Uganda does not restrict you to any certain locations. However, getting to Kidepo and Karamoja will necessitate the rental of a Hilux or Landcruiser. The roads in these regions are just too rough for the RAV4.

Can I cross the border with my rental car in Uganda

Only to Rwanda, Tanzania, and Kenya are our rental cars authorized to cross borders.

Notifying us in advance is necessary in order to arrange for a COMESA card, an extension of your vehicle’s insurance, in the event that you intend to cross the border and undertake a multi-country road trip. In our booking form, you have the option to pick this. You cannot cross the border or get damage insurance without our permission.

Is comprehensive insurance included with my car rental in Uganda

All of our Ugandan rental cars come with full insurance coverage, so you won’t have to worry about a thing in the event of an accident or fire. Your medical and travel insurance will cover injuries and property damage.

The maximum deductible that comes with your insurance is $300. The insurance does not cover things like tires, underbody covering, or windows. In the following situations, the renter is legally responsible for repairs to the rental vehicle and any third-party property damaged:

  • surpassing the posted speed limit;
  • events involving only one vehicle or rollovers (which are seen as consequences of careless driving);
  • harm to the vehicle that results from neglecting its upkeep and care;
  • being behind the wheel while intoxicated;
  • traveling via prohibited regions or roadways.

In the rental automobile agreement, you can find our complete terms and conditions.

Self-drive Road trip Uganda

Which Telecom provider do I use in Uganda

There are a number of mobile network operators in Uganda. When it comes to coverage, Airtel and MTN are tops. You can use the 4G network with either provider.

Obtain a sim card and top it off with enough data to make and receive calls and internet before you hit the road. Simply bring your passport to the service center of your choosing inside the telecom firm to quickly receive a SIM card. Did we assist you in reserving your rental car? When our representatives pick you up from the airport or your resort, they can also provide you directions to the SIM card store.

How does it work with navigation in Uganda

We provide a detailed map of Uganda and the most up-to-date Bradt Travel Guide with every one of our rental cars in Uganda. Prior to your trip to Uganda, we highly recommend that you install Maps.me on your mobile device. The app is available for free.

Get GPS directions while you drive using the Uganda maps downloaded. You can find a map of nearly every campground and resort on Maps.me. Most people who travel make the mistake of trying to see too much in too short of a time. The suggested journey time should be increased by 30% if you are use Google Maps for your trip planning. Get a good feel for how much you can do on your safari in Uganda by perusing our recommended routes page.

What happens if there’s a breakdown or an accident

Remember that while driving in bad weather, unforeseen issues can arise. We are well-versed in route troubleshooting, but we also need your cooperation, confidence, and patience.

Always get in touch with us right away if there’s an emergency. You can reach us at any time by calling our toll-free number, and we will try our best to resolve the issue.

Helping someone out immediately is the best way to get you back on the road because most mechanical problems encountered while driving are small. We have a system of mechanics in the mountains to help you out if something goes wrong. We will promptly dispatch a mechanic to your location or direct you to the closest garage. To ensure that your Uganda Safari can go forward in the event that a vehicle cannot be fixed on the spot within 24 hours, a replacement vehicle will be sent from Kampala.

A self-drive safari isn’t the way to go if you get anxious quickly when things don’t go according to plan. You might not have planned on spending the day on the road due to the dusty and uneven surfaces, the possibility of getting stuck in the mud, a flat tire, or mechanical problems. Please get in touch with us as soon as possible after an accident so that we can explain what to do. You need to document the damage to the vehicle with photographs and report it to the police.

How to Deal with traffic cops while Driving in Uganda

There are a lot of traffic officers in Uganda. They stand out from afar in their brilliant gray and white attire. Being polite, patient, and respectful is the best policy to follow when interacting with any Ugandan government official. If you greet them with kindness, you will have gained a new friend.

If a traffic police pulls you over, they may check your driver’s license, the condition of your tires, and the insurance on your car. You can drive legally in Uganda with a permit from any nation.

The traffic officers we’ve encountered have always been kind, inquisitive, and eager to strike up a conversation.

When you break the law (for example, when you pass another vehicle without signaling) and are fined, you have to pay the fine. The proper place to accomplish this is at the bank or through their mobile app. Ugandan traffic police officers will often propose a quicker way to pay and will ask you to “give them a Coke.” Having said that, you shouldn’t propose this.

How are the roads in Uganda

As far as African countries go, Uganda has some of the best roads. All four of the country’s major highways, which extend from Kampala, are asphalt.

On the other hand, you may expect a fair share of speed bumps and the odd pothole.

In most cases, you will encounter a gravel road on the last leg of your daily commute.

on the road to reach your lodging or the park’s entrance. It is legal to drive on dirt roads within the parks for off-roading. These gravel and dirt roads are in a constantly changing state, but they get downright nasty when it starts to rain.

Even if the roads are in good condition, you won’t be able to go faster than 60 km/h. This is because there are a lot of speed bumps, you have to slow down as you pass through villages, and you’ll definitely want to take lots of pictures! The view is stunning even from the road. Maintain a speed of 25 km/h when traveling on mud and gravel roads.

For the majority of your self-drive safari in Africa, you’ll be traveling on paved roads, and our most comfortable vehicle for this terrain is the Toyota Hilux.

Where can I rent a car in Uganda

In search of the ideal vehicle for your Ugandan road trip? Let us at Car Rental Drives Africa help you get the rental car that best fits your needs.

None of our rental automobiles are ever contracted out; we always own them. We have a variety of Toyota automobiles available, including RAV4, Land Cruiser, and Hilux Double Cab models. All four-wheel drives are dependable and commonly utilized, so they will be ideal for your exciting road journey in Uganda.

You are more than welcome to drive alone or arrange for a local driver-guide to accompany your rental car. You still have complete control over your vacation plans and schedule, even though the driver-guide is there to make your life easier. A driver’s day rate is $50.

All set to hit the road in Uganda? Reserve your rental vehicle now!

1. Is it safe to visit Uganda

Indeed, that is correct! People from all over the world consider Uganda to be one of the friendliest and safest nations in all of Sub-Saharan Africa. Armed clashes between tourists and Ugandans are quite rare, and the majority of Ugandans speak very good English. A country with a high crime rate is not one where we would have dared to start a self-drive automobile rental company. It is really impolite to not yell out a greeting to the locals while driving in Uganda.

But we still expect you to be careful when you travel. That includes taking the following safety measures when you’re behind the wheel in Uganda.

  • With you at all times while you travel: money, a fully charged phone with airtime, food, and enough of water.
  • Always be aware of the location of the closest gas station when you need to fill up your car.
  • You should only ever park in private lots.
  • Be cautious when camping.
  • Stay home after 7 o’clock in the evening. Why? Because it’s not uncommon for other Ugandan drivers to either not have lights on or only use their high beams.
  • making visibility near-impossible.
  • Travelers often make the mistake of trying to cover too much ground on a single trip. You should prepare to go at a slower pace than usual, because driving in Uganda can be incredibly taxing.