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Economy (Suzuki Swift or similar) is the most frequently booked car hire type in Nicaragua.
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Cars in Nicaragua drive on the right-hand side of the road. The roads in the cities and on highways are generally well-maintained, but you may encounter potholes and unsealed roads in rural areas. If you plan on doing a lot of driving outside cities or on beaches, you might want to consider hiring a 4WD. Additionally, you'll likely find yourself sharing the road with cyclists and pedestrians, so be prepared to take it slow when necessary. It's not uncommon for drivers not to use their turn signals, and they may signal with their hands instead. You can expect to encounter police checkpoints relatively frequently, so make sure you have all the necessary documentation on hand.
Most companies require drivers to be at least 21 years old before they can book car hire in Nicaragua. Most will also charge a young driver's fee to anyone under 25. Sometimes, certain vehicles may be restricted to drivers under 25 as well. You'll also need to present your driving licence, an International Driving Licence and your passport.
Petrol in Nicaragua costs roughly NIO 50 (about GBP 1.10) per litre and around NIO 185 (GBP 3.90) for a gallon. You'll generally pay by cash, but you can often find ATMs at petrol stations. You can generally find petrol stations pretty easily but make sure to fuel up when you can if you're taking long rural road trips.
The speed limit in built-up areas of Nicaragua is generally 45 km/h (roughly 28 mph). On rural roads, the limit is usually 60 km/h, unless otherwise stated. When you're on the highway, the limit is most often 100 km/h (about 62 mph). Bear in mind that these are usually the maximum limits and the posted speed limits can be lower in certain areas, so always keep a close eye out for signs.
Most popular car type