Amman - 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?

Anything will work. I've seen the very small Smart cars to the biggest SUVs possible. There are lots of opportunities to go out into the desert, so if you'd like to do that, bring something with a higher clearance and 4WD. - Mar 2023

Any kind of car is fine in Amman. If you want to go to Wadi Rum or into the desert (which is a lot of fun), I recommend a 4WD. You can go to these areas without a 4WD; most camps will pick you up and bring you. Lots of people camp here, so if you are into that, definitely bring a 4WD. - Jul 2022

Definitely an SUV if you want to go outside of Amman and explore the country. In Amman, a sedan is fine. There are many local mechanics that do a great job. Jordan has a very low crime rate, and I felt much safer there than in the US. I never heard or had a problem with burglaries. - Oct 2021

If you stick to Amman and the major highways, you can get around the country in even the smallest car. If you want to do offroad desert driving, get yourself a good 4x4 from someone leaving. Usually you can find a diplomatic 4x4 from someone leaving for $2000-10000. Don't bring something brand new as you'll likely leave with some dings and scrapes. - Apr 2021

You will get dents. Don't bring anything you love. - Feb 2021

One you don't mind getting in an accident with and one that can go off-road if that appeals to you. Sometimes smaller is helpful with finding parking. - Jan 2021

We have two SUVs... one large one and one midsize. We like to use the smaller one for parking in the city. No burglary or carjacking, decent roads. Bring whatever car you want, even if its a Mercedes. You'll be fine. - Dec 2020

Any car is fine. 4wd if you are adventurous and want to go in off-road. - Sep 2020

Nothing too nice. It will likely get bumped and dinged. We had an SUV and I enjoyed having the size with all the drivers that seemed unsafe. - Sep 2018

4WD is good especially if you want to go desert camping. It's not completely necessary otherwise. City driving is pretty smooth and easy with the typical "I can't stay inside the lines" type of driving in the Arab world. Parts seem to be available, but you can easily order through DPO for some parts. I just wouldn't bring a Volvo because parts would be hard to buy. I haven't heard of any theft. - Sep 2018

A sedan is fine, the roads here are quite good and even driving out of the city to major sites (Dead Sea, Jerash, Petra) is all by smooth roads. The drivers here are quite aggressive so sometimes being in a big SUV is nice just to make sure that you are seen. - Mar 2017

We have a Toyota RAV4 which has been fine. - Jul 2016

Anything goes. people have sedans, suv's, and minivans. There are really good and reliable mechanics that even do door to door service. - Mar 2016

An SUV or 4x4--when it rains, it floods; when it snows, the entire country shuts down. Good to have wheels to get you out of your driveway and to the store when a storm hits. - Mar 2016

Definitely bring a car that you can service here. Parts will need to be shipped from the States. We bought an older Pajero SUV when we first arrived. Toyota, Lexus, Honda are all very common here. We have a GX470 Lexus. It is the Land cruiser. Another name for it here is the Prado. They are a great choice. Others have Rav 4's or Honda Pilots. When it rains here, it floods. Not for long but that and the possibility of going off roading to see some sites makes a 4 wheel drive Vehicle nice. The driving here is a little crazy. I am always on the defensive. The bigger the vehicle, the better you can push your way into the roundabouts. We expect to be dinged up before we leave post. People do have smaller cars here but since this is my opinion, I recommend at least a small SUV +. The 2 month wait for your vehicle is tough. That is why we bought a car here from someone leaving. Not everyone is allowed two cars so plan for that. For my next post, I will be looking for a SUV to buy from someone leaving post (if possible). Taxi's are cheap and plentiful. I should add that there isn't a concern for car jacking. - Nov 2015

Many people drive SUVs, but they're not necessary. You will see cars of all sizes on the roads--compact to full-sized pickup trucks. We drive an American mini-van which has been fine. I haven't heard of any carjackings or break-ins. - May 2015

I drive a small hatchback with no problems but some people prefer SUVs, as drivers are pretty aggressive and tend to follow a "might has right" approach. 4x4 is needed if you want to do any off-roading. Diplomats aren't allowed to import motorcycles, unfortunately. - Mar 2015

You can bring pretty much anything. I wouldn't bring an expensive or brand new car just because of the inevitable dings and scratches you will get. Sand/dust is hard on coats of paint. It also means your car will often be quite dirty (we don't wash our car but a couple times a year, it helps to keep track of finger prints or activity on the car that perhaps shouldn't be there). Fender benders happen. For up-to-date restrictions on the age of the car, please check with Shipping. - Jul 2014

Small SUVs are preferable. Amman is a VERY hilly city, and Jordanians are terrible drivers, so it's nice to be in something bigger. Parking makes it so you want a smaller car, though it's not impossible to find a place for a larger SUV either. I think you can't import a car older than 5 years, or with tinted windows, though there are enough of them on the road here! - Mar 2014

We have a 4x4 but we could get by just fine in town with a sedan. Not sure about outside of the city. - Dec 2013

Driving in Jordan can be an experience and fender benders or scrapes are common since basic driving courtesies are not the norm. Almost any vehicle is ok, with SUVs being good if you plan to do a lot of distance driving or desert driving. The difficult part may be getting parts for some makes. Tires are very expensive. - Aug 2013

Anything is fine. Jordan has a significant import tax on vehicles which artificially raises the cost of vehicles. Jordanians have a big incentive to take care of their vehicles. Roads are generally fine for normal cars. Parts for uncommon cars will be more expensive. - Jul 2013

4WD is ideal, as there are times you will drive on very bumpy or nonexistent roads, but we have gotten by without one. I would recommend an SUV or some type of larger vehicle because the biggest vehicles on the road get the right of way. Japanese cars are well serviced here. You drive in the right lanes, same as the US (wheel on the left). - May 2013

If you are thinking of doing desert camping, you will want a 4WD, but for around Amman you can drive anything. You will probably feel safer in a SUV, though, since the drivers are nuts here. - Mar 2013

You can drive almost anything here. Some streets are narrow, but many Jordanians still drive their Land Rovers. Car repair has not been an issue for us, and labor is far cheaper than in the States. - Apr 2012

Any kind of vehicle is fine here, as long as you are prepared to drive defensively/aggressively any time you're on the road. If you want to go offroad, there are plenty of options, just get a 4WD vehicle. - Mar 2012

Any vehicle would be suitable, although most people here drive SUVs. - Mar 2012

Not a vehicle with low clearance due to the frequent speed bumps. - Oct 2011

Most expats tend to own SUVs and they are probably the preferred type of vehicle. - Aug 2011

I'm not sure about restrictions. We purchased a used vehicle from there. Roads can be bad, although they are improving. MANY people get into fender-benders because there are no real 'rules' on the road. I'm not sure about parts, because we didn't require any. I would not take a nice car over there. Many people buy a car and then sell it before they leave. I would contact the embassy for the newsletter that lists the cars for sale. - Aug 2011

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