Car Hire in Sao Vicente and Santa Antao
Sao Vicente has good roads and cars can be readily hired in Mindelo. In Santa Antao the cobbled roads through the mountains are hazardous as they are not repaired. Local drivers know where the worst potholes are. But it may be wiser to use a taxi, particulary at night..
Hiring a 4x4 is expensive and may not be necessary in Sal. The island is only 30 miles long and you can get around it all in a day. Travel within Sal is simple by taxi, which should cost no more than £4 by day or £6 at night. Until recently taxis would not cheat customers who do not speak Portuguese but reports suggest that this may be changing. So check the price first in euros. Most of the hire cars break down due to lack of maintenace and the harsh driving environment. It is cheaper to rent a car in Espargos than in the airport
Hiring a car in other Cape Verde islands
Only Sao Vicente and Santiago have any kind of bus service. And that is restricted to the cities of Mindelo and Praia. Aluguers are less common than on Sal. They usually travel between outlying villages and the main town early morning and late afternoon carrying commuters.There may not be a service at all at midday . So hiring a car may be the best solution.
Unlike on Sal aluguers do not like to accept European passengers. They expect you to hire one yourself and take the full charge which can be as much as £20 or £30 for even a short journey. It is absolutely essential to haggle in advance. A half day trip visiting one of the remote beaches will set you back by at least £40 to £50.
So a hire car sounds attractive. But do not even think of attempting this yourself in a hire car, even a good 4x4 unless you are an experienced taking one to the south or unless you are an experienced desert driver. You will get stuck in the sand drifrts that plague these poor roads.
Best to take a taxi from the port and stick to it if you find a good one. There are hire cars in the main square. But there are no road signs and it is hard to get a map, so hiring a car is not a good option. Take a taxi to the volcano.
The aluguers are very rare here and you may end up paying for a private one. If you can find where they stop in Vila do Maio by the local grocery shop and after a long enough wait you can share to be driven up the Coast past the airport. There are very few hire cars.
The bench in the back of Manuel Burgos` Toyota Hiace pickup is the only possible transport here. Aluguers meet the boat with a planned schedule that usually excludes Faja d`Agua, so you must phone him.