Dominican Republic: Local Travel Info
A Land of Contrasts
Internal flights and major international airports
The Dominican Republic has a number of airports, both major and minor. The capital, Santo Domingo, is serviced by Las Americas International Airport, and is the major route into the country from Europe.
Getting to and from the airport
Las Americas is about 30 minutes from the centre of the capital, Santo Domingo. Public buses are not generally available into the city but can be picked up from the main highway, so it is best to ask directions to the nearest bus stop and get a taxi to it. The airport also offers car hire from numerous different firms, and a taxi rank ensures a ready supply of metered taxis if you wish to take one into the city direct. A taxi ride will cost you around RD$900 Dominican Pesos.
Renting a car is a simple and effective way of getting around the country. When hiring a car in the Dominican Republic the best place to start is the airport. Most major rental firms are represented, and prices are relatively reasonable. Be sure to take out any extra car insurance offered as this will make things considerably easier in the event of any accidents. You will require a drivers license and credit card in order to organize a car rental.
To book car rental in The Dominican Republic online, view our Car Hire section for The Dominican Republic. We offer Ok Alpha users the latest special offers and best rates available for car hire in The Dominican Republic. We advise you book your The Dominican Republic hire car in advance so you can pick it up and drop it off directly at the airport.
Drivers license requirements?
A valid and internationally recognized drivers license is required to drive in the Dominican Republic. Dominicans drive on the right hand side of the road and the speed limit varies from 60kph to 100kph depending on how urban a location is. Major highways link the larger cities of the Dominican Republic, though some of the smaller roads can be less well kept and are advised to be taken with caution. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is illegal and carries stiff penalties. Speeding is also taken seriously: do not expect leniency on the grounds of being a tourist.
Buses in the Dominican Republic
Buses vary in quality and frequency in the Dominican Republic. There are three major bus firms and they offer routes between the main towns and cities for a variety of fares. A medium range journey will cost you around RD$10 for a non air-conditioned bus and RD$15 for an air conditioned one. The bus network is great value for getting between cities, but don’t expect it to extend beyond the major settlements.
Taxis in the Dominican Republic
Taxis are an expensive way to get around the Dominican Republic, but can be much more comfortable than public transport. It is also possible to find taxis with air conditioning, a welcome relief from the hot Caribbean sun when you are hauling your luggage to and fro. Taxis are run on a destination fee basis as opposed to a meter, making the opportunity for scams much more widely available to fraudulent drivers. If you wish to use a taxi then make sure to firmly agree a price with your driver for your destination before you enter the vehicle. Make it clear that you will not pay any more than the agreed rate, and don’t be afraid to haggle within reason. Also, consider asking around other drivers before making an agreement, this will give you a chance to work out the going rate for a destination. That said, make sure to treat the driver with respect. If you are seeking a walk on the wild side then another option is the Motoconcho, a small, privately owned motorbike. If you don’t have any luggage with you then a ride on the back of one of these is a very fast and cheap way to get around town, but it is easily the most dangerous method of transport.
Cycling in the Dominican Republic
Cycling is quite popular in the Dominican Republic and some of the terrain is stunningly beautiful once you get out of the main cities. Many tour operators do cycling tours in various different areas, and most cities have a number of cycle rental outlets. Prices are reasonable, and if you are particularly fit then you may want to take advantage of the country’s mountainous terrain for some serious mountain biking. There are a number of designated cycle routes in the country that are popular among tourists, though bike theft is an issue and it is therefore advisable to keep your bike locked up at all times. Wearing a helmet is necessary given the sometimes unpredictable nature of the roads, and you will need lights if riding at night. Children’s bicycles are also generally available for hire. Cycling is a cost-effective, clean and green way to get around the Dominican Republic.