Barbados Car Rentals

British rules and road design make driving a rental car in Barbados a fun experience

Photo credit: © seeknewtravel

Barbados is a rather small island with an amazingly intricate system of roads. Visitors often find themselves eager to take advantage of the freedom that a rental car brings. A few differences in driving conditions are enough to keep things exciting for some, while low speed limits and well-maintained roads keep things relatively safe for all.

Renting a Car

None of the major international car rental agencies keep branches on Barbados, but local agencies are plentiful. These local offices generally have a large number of automobiles available and offer some of the same services as the larger companies, such as vehicle delivery and the ability to process the required temporary visitor's permits. Rental car agencies do not provide car or booster seats for children, so make sure you bring one from home if you are traveling with a small child.

The table below shows the rental agencies located in this general area.

Vehicle Rental Companies
Name Phone Location
Bamboo Auto Barbados (246) 435-4462 Christ Church Parish
Bargain Motors (246) 428-2772 Christ Church Parish
Blessed Rentals (246) 243-1894 Forde's Road Clapham - 1.8 mi. (2.9 km) East-Southeast of Bridgetown
Bryce Car Rental 246--423 Union Road - St. Philip Parish
Chelsea Motors (246) 228-0682 Chelmead - St. Michael Parish
Coconut Car Rentals (246) 437-0297 Rockley - 2.5 mi. (4.0 km) Southeast of Bridgetown
Corbin's Car Rentals (246) 427-9531 Upper Collymore Rock - 1.6 mi. (2.6 km) East of Bridgetown
Courtesy Cars (246) 431-4160 Grantley Adams International Airport - Charnocks
Direct Car Rentals (246) 420-6372 2.9 mi. (4.7 km) East-Northeast of St. Lawrence Gap
Drive Barbados Rent a Car (246) 624-0702 786 Fontabelle Road, Henrys Ville Bridgetown - Downtown Bridgetown
Drive Barbados Rent a Car (246) 624-0702 Bridgetown Cruise Terminal - 0.3 mi. (0.5 km) Northwest of Bridgetown
Drive-A-Matic Car Rentals (246) 422-3000 Airport Access Road - Charnocks
Executive Rentals (246) 228-1993 Worthing Main Road - Christ Church Parish
Express Rent A Car (246) 428-7845 St. Lawrence Gap
Fat Jacks Rentals (246) 420-6502 Maxwell Coast Road - Christ Church Parish
First Choice Car Rental (246) 434-2277 6 Peronne Gap - Christ Church Parish
GL Rentals (246) 271-6321 1 Fairholme Gardens - Christ Church Parish
Jones Garage Car Rentals (246) 425-6637 Passage Road - Downtown Bridgetown
M.A.H. Car Rentals (246) 427-1952 Passage Road - Downtown Bridgetown
Southern Rentals (246) 428-7013 Welches
Stoute's Car Rental (246) 416-4456 Kirtons Street - Charnocks
Stoutes Car Rental Ltd. (246) 416-4456 Grantley Adams International Airport - Charnocks
Sungold Car Rental (246) 422-6980 Glendalough - St. Lucy Parish
Thrifty Grantley Adams Airport (246) 416-4457 Grantley Adams International Airport - Charnocks
Tipoa Car Rentals (801) 895-3381 Grantley Adams International Airport - Charnocks
Top Car Rentals (246) 435-0378 Rockley New Road - 2.4 mi. (3.8 km) Southeast of Bridgetown
Top Class Car Rentals (246) 228-7368 23 Regency Park - 1.7 mi. (2.7 km) North-Northwest of St. Lawrence Gap
Venture Car Rentals (246) 228-4141 70 Warners Park - Fairy Valley Rock
Voyager Rent A Car Barbados (246) 427-7508 151 Lowlands Park - 3.6 mi. (5.8 km) East-Northeast of St. Lawrence Gap

Requirements and restrictions can vary. If you are concerned about minimum and maximum age restrictions, insurance requirements and the like, consider contacting each firm directly, before making a final decision.

The Cost of Renting a Car

One of travelers' biggest complaints about rental cars in Barbados is the expense. Daily rates average $100(USD), and weekly rates of $400(USD) are not unheard of. Air-conditioning is not a standard feature on most vehicles, and rental rates naturally depend on the type of car and the desired options.

As you can see below, prices will vary, depending on the season and vehicle type. The lowest rates are typically only available from the least expensive agencies during the slow season. The high end of the range is what you can anticipate during the peak season.

Vehicle Rentals, Daily Rates
Rental Type Low Rate High Rate
Compact Car $ 38.00 $ 105.00
Economy Car $ 45.00 $ 95.00
Mid Size Car $ 45.00 $ 105.00
Full Size Car $ 50.00 $ 105.00
Light SUV $ 70.00 $ 121.00
Heavy SUV $ 75.00 $ 132.00
Standard SUV $ 76.00 $ 158.00
Full Size Van $ 83.00 $ 116.00
Mini Van $ 85.00 $ 97.00
Vehicle Rentals, Weekly Rates
Rental Type Low Rate High Rate
Compact Car $ 185.00 $ 450.00
Economy Car $ 210.00 $ 400.00
Full Size Car $ 245.00 $ 482.00
Mid Size Car $ 245.00 $ 518.00
Light SUV $ 245.00 $ 540.00
Full Size Van $ 266.00 $ 605.00
Standard SUV $ 300.00 $ 785.00
Mini Van $ 345.00 $ 465.00
Heavy SUV $ 400.00 $ 682.00

Gas Stations

Fuel costs are also a factor in planning your travel budget. Gas prices on the island stay somewhat steady, averaging about $3(USD) per gallon.

Even though you shouldn't have any issues locating gas stations, it is still a good idea to take a look at the chart that follows to get an orientation of where some are located.

Gas Stations
Name Location
Benthems Gas Station 2.6 mi. (4.2 km) North-Northeast of Speightstown
Esso Gas Station Beckles Road - 1.5 mi. (2.5 km) Southeast of Bridgetown
Esso Lanterns Mall Hastings Main Road - 2.5 mi. (4.0 km) Southeast of Bridgetown
Esso Oistins Oistins Main Road and Oistins Hill - 1.6 mi. (2.6 km) East of St. Lawrence Gap
Shell Appleby Appleby - 2.1 mi. (3.4 km) South of Holetown
Shell Black Rock 1.3 mi. (2.2 km) North of Bridgetown
Shell Dover Beach Highway 7 - Dover
Shell Durrants Road Durrants Road just East of the Airport - 3.6 mi. (5.7 km) East of St. Lawrence Gap
Shell GAI Airport Grantley Adams International Airport - Charnocks
Shell Speightstown Highway 1C - Speightstown
Shell Weltches 1.7 mi. (2.8 km) East-Northeast of Bridgetown
Shell Worthing Beach Highway 7 at Worthing Beach - 1.1 mi. (1.8 km) West-Northwest of St. Lawrence Gap
Sookram Mini Mart Atlantic Shores
Sookram Mini Mart Atlantic Shores
Texaco Mullins Highway 1B - Mullins
Texaco Mylords Hill Mylords Hill - 1.8 mi. (2.9 km) East-Northeast of Bridgetown

Rules of the Road

Streets on the island should be approached from the left, in the British style. Roundabouts are also common in busy sections. The speed limit within city limits is restricted to 20 mph, but drivers who strike out into the countryside find speed limits of 45 mph more to their taste. Foreign drivers should also note that when another driver flashes his headlights at an intersection it is meant as an invitation to proceed. Although streets are usually in fairly good condition, they are not particularly well-lit at night. Thus, drivers are advised to adhere to the lower speed limits.

To drive in Barbados, you must obtain either an International Drivers License or a temporary visitor's permit. Temporary permits are easily gotten from the car rental agencies themselves or from local police stations. A valid driver's license issued by the traveler's home country must be presented along with a registration fee of $5(USD).

Travelers who opt for to drive in Barbados find that while the rental prices are somewhat steep, the driving experience itself is a pleasurable one, and the ability to take off and explore the island at a moment's notice is invaluable.


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