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Car Rental in Bahrain

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Renting a Car in Bahrain: Everything You Need to Know

When visiting Bahrain, renting a car can be a convenient and efficient way to get around and explore the country. However, before you hit the road, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the local driving laws and requirements.

Local Driving Laws

Before renting a car in Bahrain, it’s essential to understand the local driving laws. In Bahrain, driving is on the right-hand side of the road, and the minimum driving age is 18 years old. Seat belts are mandatory for all passengers, and using a mobile phone while driving is strictly prohibited. It’s also important to be aware of speed limits and other relevant traffic regulations.

Driver’s License and Insurance

When renting a car in Bahrain, you will need a valid driver’s license from your home country or an International Driving Permit. Additionally, car rental companies in Bahrain typically require renters to be at least 21 years old and have a credit card for payment and security deposit purposes. It’s also important to ensure that the rental car is properly insured to protect yourself in the event of an accident or damage.

Choosing the Right Rental Car

When selecting a rental car in Bahrain, consider the size of the vehicle, your budget, and any specific needs you may have during your trip. Whether you prefer a compact car for navigating through urban areas or a larger vehicle for long road trips, there are various options available from reputable car rental companies in Bahrain.

Booking in Advance

To ensure availability and secure the best rates, it’s recommended to book your rental car in advance, especially during peak travel seasons. Many car rental companies in Bahrain offer online booking options, making it convenient to reserve your vehicle before arriving in the country.

Exploring Bahrain by Car

With your rental car ready to go, you can explore the beautiful sights and attractions that Bahrain has to offer, from the historic Qal’at al-Bahrain fort to the bustling souks and modern shopping centers. Just remember to drive safely and adhere to local traffic laws to make the most of your journey.

By understanding local driving laws and requirements, obtaining the necessary documentation, and choosing the right rental car, you can enjoy a smooth and hassle-free experience when renting a car in Bahrain.

Rental Requirements

Age Limits

To rent a car in Bahrain, the minimum age requirement is typically 21 years old, and some car rental companies may have a maximum age limit of 65 years old.

Driving License Requirements

To rent a car in Bahrain, you will need a valid driving license from your home country, along with an International Driving Permit (IDP) if your license is not in Arabic or English. You must have held your license for a minimum of one year.


When renting a car in Bahrain, you will need to provide a valid passport, a credit card for the security deposit, and your driving license and IDP if applicable. Some car rental companies may also require additional documentation, so it’s best to check with them beforehand.

Insurance Information

When renting a car in Bahrain, it’s important to understand the insurance options available to you.

Basic Insurance

The basic insurance typically includes Collision Damage Waiver and Theft Protection. Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) covers the cost of damage to the rental car in the event of a collision, while Theft Protection covers the cost if the car is stolen.

Additional Insurance

In addition to the basic insurance, you may have the option to purchase additional coverage such as Personal Accident Insurance, which provides coverage for medical expenses in the event of an accident, and Supplemental Liability Insurance, which provides additional liability coverage.

Insurance Tips

Before renting a car in Bahrain, it’s recommended to check your existing travel insurance policies to see if they provide any coverage for rental cars. This can help you determine if you need to purchase additional insurance from the rental car company.

Understanding the insurance options when renting a car in Bahrain can help ensure that you are adequately covered in the event of an accident or theft.

Local Driving Laws and Regulations in Bahrain

General Traffic Rules

Driving Side: Driving is on the right side of the road.
Speed Limits: Urban areas – 60 km/h, rural roads – 80-100 km/h, highways – 120 km/h.
Other Useful Info: Watch out for speed cameras and adhere to parking regulations.

Overtaking and Lane Usage

Overtaking Rules: Overtake on the left and yield to faster vehicles.
Lane Discipline: Keep right except to overtake on multi-lane roads.
Other Useful Info: Be aware of aggressive driving behaviors.

Seat Belt and Child Safety

Seat Belt Laws: Front and rear passengers must wear seat belts.
Child Safety: Children under 10 years old must use a car seat or booster seat.
Other Useful Info: Taxis are exempt from the seat belt law.

Use of Mobile Phones

Mobile Phone Restrictions: It is illegal to use a handheld mobile phone while driving.
Other Useful Info: Utilize hands-free devices if necessary.

Alcohol and Driving

Legal Blood Alcohol Limits: 0.0% for all drivers.
Zero Tolerance Policies: Strict enforcement for all drivers.
Other Useful Info: Penalties for DUI/DWI are severe.

Tolls and Charges

Toll Roads: No toll roads in Bahrain.
Congestion Charges: No congestion charges in Bahrain.
Other Useful Info: Parking fees may apply in certain areas.

Roundabouts and Intersections

Navigating Roundabouts: Give way to the left when entering a roundabout.
Intersection Rules: Yield to vehicles coming from the right.
Other Useful Info: Be cautious of aggressive driving at intersections.

Headlight and Windshield Wiper Laws

Headlight Usage: Use headlights at night and during rain.
Windshield Wiper Rule: No specific requirement to turn on headlights with wipers.
Other Useful Info: Keep headlights on at all times for safety.

Emergency Vehicles

Right of Way for Emergency Vehicles: Pull over to the side and give way to emergency vehicles.
Other Useful Info: Follow instructions from traffic police during emergencies.

Driving Tips for Bahrain

Road Conditions

Bahrain has well-maintained roads with modern infrastructure, making it relatively easy to drive around the country. The main highways are in good condition, but some smaller roads in rural areas may be less well-maintained.

Urban vs. Rural Driving

In urban areas such as Manama, drivers should be prepared for heavy traffic and crowded streets. In rural areas, road quality may vary, so it’s important to drive cautiously and be aware of potential hazards.

Navigational Tips

Using a GPS navigation system or a mobile map app can be extremely helpful for getting around Bahrain. However, it’s important to have a physical map as a backup, as GPS signals can sometimes be unreliable.

Other Useful Tips

– Drive on the right-hand side of the road.
– Speed limits are strictly enforced, so be sure to adhere to them.
– It’s illegal to use a mobile phone while driving, unless it’s hands-free.
– Be aware of roundabouts, as they are common in Bahrain.
– Avoid driving during peak traffic times, especially in urban areas.

By following these driving tips, you can have a safe and enjoyable experience renting a car in Bahrain.

Roadside Assistance and Emergency Procedures

Breakdown Procedures

In the event of a breakdown while renting a car in Bahrain, there are a few steps you should follow. First, safely pull over to the side of the road and turn on your hazard lights. Then, contact the rental company to inform them of the situation. They will provide you with instructions on how to proceed and may send roadside assistance to help.

Emergency Services

It’s important to have the contact numbers for emergency services readily available while driving in Bahrain. In case of an emergency, dial 999 for the police, 998 for an ambulance, and contact your rental company’s roadside assistance for any car-related issues.

Rental Company Policies

Most rental companies in Bahrain offer 24/7 roadside assistance and towing services in case of a breakdown. It’s important to familiarize yourself with the specific policies and procedures of the rental company you choose to rent from. Be sure to have their contact information easily accessible in case of an emergency.

Where can you Rent a Car in Bahrain?

You can browse all the city locations below, sorted alphabetically. Use Ctrl+F (or Cmd+F on a Mac) to quickly find the one you want to explore.