Travel - Motor Vehicles - What fuel do I use and how do I pay for it?

South African motor vehicles run on Petrol (Gasoline) or Diesel. Our fuel qualities are excellent. Most, if not all hired cars run on lead free high octane fuel or high grade diesel.

Make sure that you specify at the filling stations (we call them garages or service stations) what fuel you require. Unlike other parts of the world, we have petrol attendants who will fill your tank, clean your windscreen, and check tyres, oil and water on request.

Filling stations accept what we call "Petrol" or "Garage" cards, which is a hybrid card issued by the credit card companies. Normal Credit cards are not accepted. You would therefore have to pay cash for your fuel if you only have a credit card. Filling Stations also accept debit cards issued by South African Banks. The alternative to carrying cash around is to apply for a debit card when you enter the country.

Caltex, Shell, BP, Engen, Total and Sasol are the major South African Brands. There are filling stations in most South African towns so you shouldn't have worry about refeulling until down to quarter tank. In the Karoo, however, distances between towns is fairly high so operate on minimums of half tanks.

The price of petrol is fixed by the state and is adjusted once a month. The price of Diesel is also set by the state, but retailers do discount it by a few cents per litre.

Check with your Car Hire Company regarding fuel grades and distance capabilities of the car you are hiring.


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