Botswana 2020





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Thread: Botswana 2020

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
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    Staines
    Age
    59
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    Default Botswana 2020

    Hi, my name and is Robert and this is my first post so be gentle with me 😂.
    Ive had a few forays into various African countries, but this will be my first self drive in Botswana. My original plan was to fly into Windhoek and pick up a Bush camper from Savanna as I loved the one we had this year. It was well equipped and maintained and had decent tyres (Iíve seen some really poor rubber on some hire vehicles).
    My question is this. Can anyone recommend a 4x4 hire company in Maun. Avis is definitely out as their reviews are shocking. My preference would be for a Toyota, but I see that companies such as McKenzie are using Ford Rangers and travel adventures I think were using Nissans.
    Any recommendations would be gratefully received, especially if you have first hand experience.
    We are arriving 21/22 May and will be in Botswana for 23/24 days. We will be starting in Moremi, then Chobe, Nxai, Makgadigadi and finishing in the CKGR. Campsites are booked and so we just need a bakkie thatís going to get us round.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Johannesburg
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    2,285

    Default Re: Botswana 2020

    McKenzie 4x4 hire in Maun has a good name. There is nothing wrong with the Ford Ranger 2.2 D or with the Nissan 2.5D. Both are great vehicles. If you are renting a single cab, I would not use the Nissan, as its wheels are too small for driving in deep sand. I would take the Ford any day. I am a safari operator and I often rent Ford and Nissan Double cabs for customers.
    Last edited by mvcoller; 2019/10/29 at 08:22 PM.
    Malcolm van Coller - retired but remained living in Johannesburg (love it here, can find everything you want and need here in Jhb)
    2011 Nissan Pathfinder 2,5 CDi LE Manual (Standard Traction Control plus Front Diff Locker)
    2008 Nissan Patrol 3.0 TDi GL (Packing system, 60lt water tank, std rear locker, LOKKA on front, two 105ah aux batteries on NL system, larger Cirrus intercooler, complete 76mm exhaust system)
    2003 Bushwakka Shorti (extra luggage space for customers on when on safari (with 160 H/Moon Star Gazer RTT and 100lt water tanks)
    Ex 1999 Nissan Terrano 2.7 TDi (Limited Slip Diffs Front and Rear) with Jurgens RTT for Guiding trips
    Ex 2011 Conqueror Supra II for personal camping
    Ex 1995 GQ Patrol GLX 3 speed Auto (disaster that box was!) - Lexus V8 transplant
    Ex 1984 Nissan Safari (Poelies Vehn) 2.8 Stationwagon with 5 speed conversion, rusted like it was paid to rust!
    Ex 1995 Sani 3.0 V6 Exec
    Ex 1994 Venture 2200 with lock diff (Company vehicle) that whet my appetite for overlanding.
    Many 4x4s in National Service (Landies, Jeeps, Willys, Bedfords, Unimogs and Buffels)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Wilmington
    Age
    61
    Posts
    29

    Default Re: Botswana 2020

    TAWANA SELF DRIVE are based in Kasane and they rent Toyota. I have used them and had no problems. You can change your itinerary to start in Chobe/Kasane, or they will deliver vehicle to Maun for you (extra charge).

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Location
    Staines
    Age
    59
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Botswana 2020

    Quote Originally Posted by mvcoller View Post
    McKenzie 4x4 hire in Maun has a good name. There is nothing wrong with the Ford Ranger 2.2 D or with the Nissan 2.5D. Both are great vehicles. If you are renting a single cab, I would not use the Nissan, as its wheels are too small for driving in deep sand. I would take the Ford any day. I am a safari operator and I often rent Ford and Nissan Double cabs for customers.
    Thanks Malcolm,
    I have a quote for a land cruiser now which is comparable to the hi lux and ranger prices. It is from a company called selfdrive4x4.com and they seem to have good reviews. Have you hired from or heard of these people?
    My preference would be a land cruiser as we are travelling alone (single vehicle) and spending our last week in CKGR. We will have a sat phone as well as the obligatory high lift jack and sand tracks just in case, but the extra ground clearance and dif lock front and back could make life a bit easier.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Midrand
    Posts
    265

    Default Re: Botswana 2020

    Quote Originally Posted by Robertproud View Post
    Thanks Malcolm,
    I have a quote for a land cruiser now which is comparable to the hi lux and ranger prices. It is from a company called selfdrive4x4.com and they seem to have good reviews. Have you hired from or heard of these people?
    My preference would be a land cruiser as we are travelling alone (single vehicle) and spending our last week in CKGR. We will have a sat phone as well as the obligatory high lift jack and sand tracks just in case, but the extra ground clearance and dif lock front and back could make life a bit easier.

    No personal experience with renting---but---love the CKGR! You will have a wonderful time there. It is so desolate, and so wonderful. We did just over a week there a few months back, and are heading there again in June 2020. Can't wait. There are some quite good trip reports in the overlanding forum for Bots...
    Last edited by heyyahhey; 2019/10/30 at 08:36 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Johannesburg
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    Default Re: Botswana 2020

    I have seen them advertising, but have not heard about or inquired about them. Most of their reviews seem to be related to organising the bookings and itinerary rather than their vehicle hire operation. Their vehicles seem modern and new, so they may well be an excellent 4x4 hire company.

    If you are getting a Cruiser for the same price as what you can get a Ranger or Hilux, I would imagine that it must be a pretty old one. I would not think an older Cruiser with maybe 200,000 km or even 300,000 km on the clock would be as good and reliable as a 1 or 2 year old Hilux or Ford with maybe 60,000 or 80,000 km on the clock.

    Another issue that would worry me when wanting to hire a camping vehicle is: Are they big enough to bring you a replacement vehicle in 10 or 12 hours should yours break down? They need to have the extra vehicle to replace yours and a truck to take the broken down vehicle back to Maun. Do they have the extra 3 staff that the swap-out will take with in that time frame. It is no good if they can only do that after 48 hours.

    I am not trying to scare you, maybe you have the extra time in CKGR for that not to worry you. I've had a scenario where my regular Hire company sent a replacement vehicle within 18 hours from Windhoek (on a flat-bed truck and a mechanic in a Land Cruiser) to collect and repair the broken down vehicle (to replace the sump with the hole) on a trail in Northern Namibia!! We phoned them at 8 pm (we only got cell signal when we abandoned the vehicle and drove towards a small town - for about 3 hours!) and they were there about 3 pm the next day.

    We were in a position to miss just one night in Swakopmund on the way south to make up the lost 24 hrs. That is what you get of a company with the required resources.... That is what I look out for.
    Last edited by mvcoller; 2019/10/31 at 12:11 AM.
    Malcolm van Coller - retired but remained living in Johannesburg (love it here, can find everything you want and need here in Jhb)
    2011 Nissan Pathfinder 2,5 CDi LE Manual (Standard Traction Control plus Front Diff Locker)
    2008 Nissan Patrol 3.0 TDi GL (Packing system, 60lt water tank, std rear locker, LOKKA on front, two 105ah aux batteries on NL system, larger Cirrus intercooler, complete 76mm exhaust system)
    2003 Bushwakka Shorti (extra luggage space for customers on when on safari (with 160 H/Moon Star Gazer RTT and 100lt water tanks)
    Ex 1999 Nissan Terrano 2.7 TDi (Limited Slip Diffs Front and Rear) with Jurgens RTT for Guiding trips
    Ex 2011 Conqueror Supra II for personal camping
    Ex 1995 GQ Patrol GLX 3 speed Auto (disaster that box was!) - Lexus V8 transplant
    Ex 1984 Nissan Safari (Poelies Vehn) 2.8 Stationwagon with 5 speed conversion, rusted like it was paid to rust!
    Ex 1995 Sani 3.0 V6 Exec
    Ex 1994 Venture 2200 with lock diff (Company vehicle) that whet my appetite for overlanding.
    Many 4x4s in National Service (Landies, Jeeps, Willys, Bedfords, Unimogs and Buffels)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Location
    Staines
    Age
    59
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Botswana 2020

    Quote Originally Posted by heyyahhey View Post
    No personal experience with renting---but---love the CKGR! You will have a wonderful time there. It is so desolate, and so wonderful. We did just over a week there a few months back, and are heading there again in June 2020. Can't wait. There are some quite good trip reports in the overlanding forum for Bots...
    We will also be there in June 2020. I think we will be in the CKGR from the 7th until the 12th, mainly in the north, around deception and passarge. If I bump into you, Iíll buy you a beer 🍺

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Midrand
    Posts
    265

    Default Re: Botswana 2020

    Quote Originally Posted by Robertproud View Post
    We will also be there in June 2020. I think we will be in the CKGR from the 7th until the 12th, mainly in the north, around deception and passarge. If I bump into you, I’ll buy you a beer ��

    Hopefully they will have fixed passarge's water hole - when we were there, it wasn't working, and there were lots of thirsty animals around. There is no water for many kms aside from what is pumped from the bore hole.

    Avoid the cut road (the one that goes straight west) - it's not good.

    When we were there last, we saw a total of four cars, in 8 days.

    We're doing CKGR and Maun area, between the 6th - 26th.

    We will be in CKGR 8, 9 Deception Pan and 10/11 Sunday Pan 2.

    Light blue Discovery 4, white discovery 4.

    Small world.


    edit: I was thinking of Motopi, in terms of the water hole and the suggestion about the road above... ignore that!
    Last edited by heyyahhey; 2019/10/31 at 06:34 AM.

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