Antigua car rental options have grown over the years offering a wider variety in companies, car models, and rates. Transportation in Antigua and Barbuda has also improved over the years, but at one time both islands were quite difficult to get around. Barbuda transportation is notoriously known for being unreliable when in combination with tours taken by visitors heading over from Antigua. Some drivers do fail to meet groups taking the ferry in or arriving on flights. When arranging any pre-booked tours, be sure to book with a company that has good reviews.
An Antigua car rental can easily be arranged upon arrival at the airport. A rental car offers a valuable way of getting around the island, especially because the popular areas are somewhat spread out. A great sense of independence arises from having a car, and with that, a greater exploration of the island is possible. Anyone planning on arranging rental transportation in Antigua and Barbuda must first purchase a temporary drivers license that is valid for six months. The license is available at any local police station or car rental agency for a nominal fee.
Antigua and Barbuda transportation can be arranged ahead of time and combined with flights and accommodation for more affordable vacations. Some all inclusive hotels and resorts offer guests different packages based on specific needs with some including car rentals. Car rental agencies include local companies and internationally renowned rental agencies and are all over the island. Be sure you're confident with driving on the left side of the road before renting a car, or at least take a bit of time to get accustomed to the roads before heading out into busy areas like St John's.
A car is another great way to see more of the islands' 365 beaches, offering the freedom to go where you want, stay as long as you want, and leave whenever it's convenient.
If you don't get an Antigua car rental, public transportation is another option for getting around. Buses are a cheap way to get around but it can be really difficult to navigate the multitude of bus lines, which can take up a significant amount of time. Public transport vehicles like minibuses are identified by either "HB" or "HA" on their vehicle plates. There are taxis on both islands which are a good option. Always negotiate the price of your journey before embarking on your trip. Drivers should produce a government issued rate card, but often they don't.
Public Barbuda transportation is much less reliable. Minibuses take the place of public buses. They are privately owned and must be flagged down to catch a ride. They run fairly frequently in the day, less frequently at night, and cost twice as much after 6 p.m. Minivans, jeeps, sedans, and motorized scooters are available to rent on Barbuda. They are a great way to travel between the Frigate Bird Sanctuary, the main town of Codrington, and many beaches, caves, and other natural attractions.
There are some other options for transportation in Antigua and Barbuda. With cruises and sailing being so popular, chartering a small yacht is a great way to get around but somewhat costly. Renting bicycles is another possibility. This cuts back on the hassle of finding parking, paying for parking and gas, and general safety concerns. Bicycles can be easily rented from Antigua hotels, many resorts, and private companies. Anyone wanting to get between the islands can take a ferry ride on the Barbuda Express, a ferry service running five days per week several times a day.