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Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

Shanghai
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Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

Hello!

My boyfriend and I will be traveling to Nicaragua in a few weeks. During our 6-day trip, we plan to cover a lot of ground. Our rough itinerary is: Granada --> Ometepe --> San Juan del Sur --> Managua. Most of the hotels we've booked offer some form of car service to take us from point A to point B, but it comes with a hefty price tag -- I am wondering if there are better, lower-cost alternatives to using the hotel's driver.

Does anyone have experience with renting a car in Nicaragua (or with hiring a private driver)? Are either of these options more budget-friendly than hotel transport (which would cost us about USD $400 for the whole trip)? Any major safety concerns with having a rental car? I'm also curious about the general logistics (e.g., parking, quality of roads, etc.).

Your advice is greatly appreciated! Thank you!

new haven
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1. Re: Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

You're going to have a hard time getting a rental car for anything much less than that, plus you'll pay for gas and parking or a ferry car fee if you take the car to Ometepe. Ometepe taxis are very expensive, so make sure you have accurate prices for that part of your trip so you can figure out a realistic budget. There is a lot at the ferry to park the car securely if you decide to leave it there (I don't know how much they charge). The roads are very good from Granada to Ometepe ferry and also on the island, if you stay on the main road. I do not know about the road to SJDS. We got the best prices and good service with Budget rental car if you decide to go that route. I also bet you can find a driver for a better price than the hotels if you search this forum.

Nicaragua
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2. Re: Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

transfers around the country can vary from US$ 40 from Managua to Granada as US$ 70 from Granada to San Jorge and US$ 60 inside the island but just from point A to point B touring around is a little bit different, renting a car is always useful as you can move around back and for but the cheapest car that you can get is US$ 30 or US$40 per day plus gas.

Get in touch with http://golocalnicaragua.wix.com/nicaragua to see if they can get a better price

Byron

Windsor, Canada
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3. Re: Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

My wife and I just rented a car for 9 days to go from Managua to Granada to SJDS then back to Managua and it cost us $150usd total on expedia. May 10-20... We found that to be much more cost effective and versatile than private transportation.

Windsor, Canada
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4. Re: Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

My wife and I just rented a car for 9 days to go from Managua to Granada to SJDS then back to Managua and it cost us $150usd total on expedia. May 10-20... We found that to be much more cost effective and versatile than private transportation.

Managua, Nicaragua
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5. Re: Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

Greetings SassyTPants (love your handle btw...):

Renting a car would work out best as you have a lower overall cost and the freedom to change up your itinerary a bit if you hear about a really cool place, you don't like one particular area, etc.

I wrote a couple of blog posts that you might find useful:

Hiring a Driver in Nicaragua

elportonverde.com/tag/…

Four Essential Nicaraguan Driving Tips

elportonverde.com/2011/…

Have a great visit!

Cheers, Mike @ Farmstay El Porton Verde, Managua

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6. Re: Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

We just got back this week. We rented a car for part off the trip and used drivers for part. We used a terrific company that I would highly recommend, Favio Express. Mostly Ronald drove us but we also dealt directly with Favio who was fantastic. We flew into Managua, got picked up at the airport and driven to Granada. We got there after 7 PM. We definitely would NOT wanted to have rented a car and driven to Granada at night after the long trip. We stayed two days in Granada then had our same driver, Ronald, take us to the ferry for Ometepe. It seems like it would have been a challenge to get a car over to Ometepe and we stayed only two nights so we didn't need a car. Some of the roads there are super challenging and you'd need high clearance vehicle. Ronald met us at the Ferry and drove us up to Managua where we were going to rent a car at the airport but we ended up renting from Favio which was perfect. He was so helpful and met us outside the city so we didn't have to drive in Managua. We drove up to Leon but stayed in Poneloyo. We were happy to have the car there and roads were fine so we didn't need high clearance. I read a lot about getting stopped by the police and was quite worried about it as we don't speak Spanish. We did get stopped once. We paid 200 cordobas (less than $10) "ticket" because we didn't have caution triangles. Basically we saw the $10 as a toll. Our license wasn't taken and the police were nice if persistent. Had we been stopped every time we drove that stretch it would have gotten tiresome, but they were only stationed there once. All in all, we were very happy with the way our travel worked out.. We had reliable, friendly driver with nice clean car and the private rental was inexpensive and hassle free. While the driver was a bit more expensive, I think it was the right thing to do for that first half of the trip. Enjoy your trip. its a beautiful country with very friendly people and fantastic fish and fresh fruit and veggies. Order fish tacos if you find them. Totally fantastic!

Managua Department...
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7. Re: Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

If you are looking for reliable and responsible drivers in Nicaragua, please contact us at www.mrownicatravel.com , our e-mail mrownicatravel@yahoo.com . Our mission is to make your vacation Safe and Enjoyable

Lake Mary, Florida
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1 post
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8. Re: Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

Favio came highly recommend to us from Hotel Dario! Favio has been fantastic during our planning process! Your review was very helpful!

England
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78 reviews
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9. Re: Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

Hi

Just in the early stages of planning a trip to Nicaragua next December 28 for two weeks. I see u used a guy called Favio along with a previous reviewer. Could u give me his contact details please along with any other info and help re places you thought were definitely worth a visit. Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks

Tricia

Paris, Canada
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5,166 posts
20 reviews
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10. Re: Taxi vs. Rental Car in Nicaragua?

I don't know Favio but this might be him : http://faviotravels.com/

A private driver gives you lots of flexibility but is expensive. You can also get around by shuttle, taxi and/or public bus.

In two weeks you could go to Leon, Granada with day trips and Ometepe and probably add a 4th destination. If you let us know your interests and budget (colonial cities, hiking, volcanoes, kayaking, wildlife, beach, surfing... ?) it would be easier to give advice. It may be a good idea to start a new thread.