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How to Get Around the Dominican Republic

Car rentals are easy to find around the airports, but you must be at least 25 years old and will have to leave a credit card deposit.

Driving in the Dominican Republic is not for the faint of heart. Although the highways are good, traffic is erratic and police along the way more likely to solicit bribes than keep things in order.

The best option is the excellent first-class bus network, which are comfortable, dependable and ridiculously cheap. Most routes are based from Santo Domingo and Santiago. Caribe Tours is a reputable firm with advanced online booking a possibility.

No visit to the DR would be complete without a ride on a “Gua-gua,” the local minivans and buses which stop at regular intervals along the route to pick up and drop off passengers. Alternatively, “Públicos” are the unmetered multi-passenger taxis that ply the main routes, marked by a white seal on the front door.

Within the cities, most Dominicans prefer to white-knuckle short rides on the ever-present swarm of “motoconchos,” which are privately owned motorbikes. While these are cheap and fast, helmets are rarely offered and it’s not uncommon to see two or three people on a single bike, casually holding anything from an ironing board to propane tanks.

The country’s high number of airports sustains a good network of domestic flights. Air Century flies between Santo Domingo, Puerto Plata, Samana, Santiago and others.

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