We recommend that most visitors to Providenciales rent a car. This is due to a lack of public transportation, the high cost of taxis and the widespread layout of the island.
Providenciales has quite a few car rental agencies to choose from. Popular due to the low daily rental rates, compact and economy cars make up the majority of the local fleets, but full size cars, minivans SUVs, jeeps and the occasional pickup truck are almost always an option.
Most of the main roads on Providenciales are paved, so there’s usually no need for a 4x4 or a high clearance vehicle. There are however a few exceptions.
The scenic Turtle Tail area of Providenciales is only accessible by a several mile long unpaved road. The conditions here don’t prohibit cars, but a jeep or SUV will allow you to maintain a faster speed and shorten the journey time considerably. This is especially a consideration if you plan to stay at a villa in the area.
Rental options for luxury vehicles is limited compared to other destinations. Generally, what's considered a luxury option are large American SUVs, such as Chevrolet Suburban or Cadillac Escalade.
Unfortunately, there are currently no available rentals of off-road icons such as the Land Rover Defender, or 70 series Toyota Land Cruiser.
You'll generally get the best rate booking directly with the local company. When comparing prices, it's important to know if Government tax is included, and what the included level of insurance is. Unlike in some states and countries, it's a requirement to hold at least third-party insurance in order to drive vehicles on public roads.
We generally advise that visitors meet their rental car agency at the airport upon arrival. Depending on the business, rental cars may be picked up at the airport, or the agency provides a short shuttle bus ride to a nearby lot. Collecting your rental on arrival will save expensive taxi fares and time.
Likewise, when departing, we’d recommend dropping your car off at or near the airport if possible. Before you book your car reservation, consider inquiring about the airport pickup and drop off policies.
Providenciales offers a wide range of rental car companies, and rates can be quite low compared to our other islands.
The best rates start at under $50 per day with taxes included, and are usually are either compacts (smaller than what would be considered a compact in the United States), or “character” class cars. Character class vehicles are offered by a few of the larger local businesses, and are slightly older fleet cars.
A few of the vacation rental villa accommodations include the complimentary guest use of a vehicle.
The Turks and Caicos follows the United Kingdom Highway Code, which means we drive on the left and utilise UK signage. Posted speed limits are in miles per hour (MPH).
However, due to the proximity of the United States much of our imports originate from Florida, and consequently the vast majority of vehicles are left hand drive (American).
In recent years, there has been an increase of used and new cars from the Japanese market, and these cars are left hand drive, yet the speedometers are marked in KPH.
The appropriate arrangement is a United Kingdom specification vehicle, with right hand drive, and a speedometer in MPH.
Be aware that rental companies will typically hold customers responsible for any damage that occurs when driving off road or on unpaved roads, and repair fees can be expensive in the Turks and Caicos. The remote locations also carry an increased crime risk. See Safety and Crime.
It isn’t uncommon for rental cars to become stuck in the soft sand on trails in the Northwest Point region of Providenciales. Towing and recovery of vehicles may be expensive, as the flatbed recovery trucks used in the country are generally unsuitable for off-road use. We advise avoiding such trails unless a capable 4x4 is used.