Windhoek - Post Report Question and Answers

What kind of car do you recommend bringing to post, given the terrain, availability of parts, burglary/carjacking risks, etc.? What kind of car do you advise not to bring?

If you like road tripping, camping, come to Namibia and if your job will import one for you duty free, import a Toyota from Japan. That said, infrastructure/highways between main cities (WDH to Swakopmund) are excellent and a regular sedan is just fine. - Jan 2021

I would definitely recommend a vehicle with off-road capability (4-wheel drive) if you plan to travel at all (or go to lodges or for game drives). Most people have vehicles that are capable of going off road, as Namibia is desert and is largely rocks and sand. For local driving any vehicle would be fine. - Jan 2016

Purchasing cars from Japan is better value; that being said cars tend to hold its value when in country. SUV is recommended for out of town road trips, however, when in town a compact car is fine. - Jun 2015

Bring something with high clearance if you're wanting to get out of the city. We have a sedan right now, and it's pretty tough going off of the main highways, which you have to do to get anywhere really interesting. You need a right-hand-drive car, and you really need two if you don't want to either play shuttle driver to the embassy twice a day or get stuck in the house. Windhoek isn't really walkable, and the embassy houses aren't close enough together that you can walk from one to another. There are normally some cars available through the embassy, as people leave and don't need a right-hand-drive at their next assignment. We ordered ours through Japan. Make sure to order waaaaaaaaaay in advance of arrival, though, or you'll be stuck for months. - May 2013

Right-hand drive and the vehicle must be newer than 5 years old. We prefer SUVs for travel outside Windhoek, but you can survive with a sedan. - Jan 2013

We purchased a low milage 4WD from Japan and had it shipped. (It took forever to get here...apparently many ships skip this port since it's pretty small!) We should be able to sell it for what we paid. Cars here are about 2-3 times more expensive than in the U.S. We also bought a 10-year old used car here (and saved the 15% VAT in the process). When we came, you weren't allowed to import any car older than 3 years, but that law may be changing. Embassy folks are not allowed to drive outside the city at night (animals, gravel roads, safety, etc.), but working only half days at the embassy on Fridays allows you to get pretty far away by nightfall for weekend trips. - Jul 2012

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