Jump to content

Paying for rental car when visiting SA


Heymanse
 Share

Recommended Posts

Got a bit of a silly question, but maybe someone out there have been through the same and can give me some advice. So we'll be flying to SA in December and I've booked us a rental car for the 30 days we're going to be there. When you do the booking, they advice you that they will not be able to accept Debit cards. Now I know South African bank cards are all known as Debit Cards. Here in Australia, however, we have a Visa Debit card. Is the Visa Debit card I have the same thing as a credit card and therefore, I'll be able to pay for the rental car? I just don't want to land up in SA only to be told, sorry, this is not a credit card and therefore, you will not be able to pay for the car.

Also, will we be able to pay for goods we buy in SA with this Visa Debit card and is there any special arrangements we need to make before our trip to use the card in SA?

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.

Edited by Heymanse
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would imagine that a Visa Debit card is a debit card. Visa is just the lot who service it.

You should be able to use your card shopping or drawing money but may have to inform the bank beforehand.

I travelled in Europe with my RSA debit card with no hassles but told the bank before I left.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Your Visa debit card, is a debit card. You need to get a credit card, which is different to what you have.

You should be able to use your debit card at MOST places in SA. You will just have to check if they accept visa. You should be able to pay at Pick 'n Pay, Click, Dros, etc.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The last time we left for SA I tried to pay for our vehicle using our American Debit/Check Card and it did not work, we ended paying for it using my SA credit card. I can recommend Lazerus Motors in Centurion if you will be traveling to that part of the world. They are definitely the cheapest and have great deals.

Just a side note, we were able to use our American cards (Credit & Debit) everywhere else with no problem and inform your bank that you will be using your cards in the country you are traveling to and which dates you will be there.

Edited by K&T
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is a tricky one - also very confusing! The only thing I can tell you is that we used our Visa Debit card to rent a small truck for our move about a month ago here in Brisbane. At firt the card was declined when we selected cheque acc - but then they tried 'credit' and it went through! The bank told us that it works exactly the same as a credit card - don't know about the overseas thing, looking forward to some more answers.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A South African guy that works with me and have been here for a couple of years told me that the VISA Debit Card is a credit card - only difference is, there's no credit given by the bank on this card, the money in the account is money I place into the account e.g. salaries, savings etc, therefore the words "Debit Card".

When I made the booking for the car, I was asked by which means I'll be paying and one of the choices were "Visa", which I have and therefore chose. So I guess I'm just worried about the words "Debit" on my bank card and the rental company saying that they won't accept Debit Cards.

I know its very confusing - I'm hoping someone has made use of this specific type of bank card, which is a common NAB bank card.

Looking forward to more advice and answers.

Edited by Heymanse
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have a UK Visa debit card and I have used it in SA in the past and I have never experienced any problems. My first Barclays card was only an ordinary debit card and I asked them to issue a visa one because many places did not accept that card. I think the important thing is that it is VISA.

I think you should give the rental company a call and ask them to confirm that they will accept your VISA debit card.

Derek

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A Visa debit card, to a vendor, is a regular Visa card just like any other. To the card holder, it's not technically a credit card because the purchases with such card are not made on credit.

There will be absolutely no problems using such card at any outlet which accepts Visa - in fact, the outlet will never know it's a "debit" card.

I've been using "debit" cards (both Mastercard and Visa) for over 10 years now across the world and have never experienced any problems.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Got a bit of a silly question, but maybe someone out there have been through the same and can give me some advice. So we'll be flying to SA in December and I've booked us a rental car for the 30 days we're going to be there. When you do the booking, they advice you that they will not be able to accept Debit cards. Now I know South African bank cards are all known as Debit Cards. Here in Australia, however, we have a Visa Debit card. Is the Visa Debit card I have the same thing as a credit card and therefore, I'll be able to pay for the rental car? I just don't want to land up in SA only to be told, sorry, this is not a credit card and therefore, you will not be able to pay for the car.

Also, will we be able to pay for goods we buy in SA with this Visa Debit card and is there any special arrangements we need to make before our trip to use the card in SA?

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.

hI there,

I am a Travel Agent and when renting a car they will defnitely require a Credit Card, even if you prepay the car hire, you need to present a credit card when you collect the car. This is for the extra's as well as they require this as a guarantee.

If you require a rate for car hire.. let me know. I can assist with that. Might be able to get you a better deal.

You can pm me..

Rgds

Ang (Angela)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I appreciate all the feedback but there seems to be some confusion - according to Omzig I would not have a problem because it is still a Visa card yet Angela says it will because its not technically a credit card. Don't know what to do now?? :huh::)

Which car rental company are you renting with?

I've got a quote from Budget to rent a Toyota Avanza for 30 days including insurance for just under R13 000.

So far they seem to give the best deal and its with a reputable company which gives me some peace of mind.

Edited by Heymanse
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ang is right - debit card holders can be seen as non credit-worthy people who cannot be issued a credit card due to poor credit history, and in some US locations rental car bookings with a debit card can be subjected to extra checks.

I've however always used a debit card (Nedbank issued MasterCard to be specific) in RSA, for car rentals, on average once every three months over the last 10 years (only Hertz and Avis though, due to business requirements), and have never had issues. I've also used a debit card to rent cars from Bayswater in Oz, also no problems whatsoever.

Your quote looks very expensive though. Is there an extra zero in there?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, if all else fails I'll take along my Woolworths Credit Card and just ensure that there's enough money on it - just in case they don't want to accept the Visa card. The quote price is correct, your eyes are not deceiving you, but keep in mind that this is including Super Cover for a 30 day period and the price is in Rands which roughly works out to be around $2000.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

See now, the question is still not answered - we are also renting a Campervan in New Zealand in Sept and I am very nervous about this whole Debit Mastercard issue. Think the best thing to do is to go to your bank here in Aus and ask them what to do! Surely they will know what is accepted.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Unless someone else has been through the same experience and actually used their Visa Debit card, I guess we won't know for sure. I'll be trying the Visa Debit card first and see what happens. I'll just have to make sure that I have a back-up plan for when they don't accept the card. I'll be contacting my bank as well.

Edited by Heymanse
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Let me try ... Visa is the 'international agent' for the bank, like Master and AMEX. They just administer the transaction on behalf of the bank. The fact that it is Visa does not make it a debit card or credit card, that is something you arrange with your bank. Thus, you get Visa debit cards and Visa credit cards. The reason why some car rental companies accept debit cards and some only credit cards are you can put a hold of a certain amount on a credit card but not on a debit card. This is not the payment fee of your rental, it is a secutiry hold they put on your card for example a flat $500. You will see the hold transaction appear on you credit card transaction statement but the transaction will not clear, it will remain 'unsettled' until you return the rental car. Once they are happy that there are no more charges they will reverse or cancel the hold and you will have access to the $500 again. This is a security measure some of them use to prevent people making a booking, emptying their debit card account, running up toll fees and fines and other charges and the rental company has no way of recovering it. A company like Eurocar in Sydney has no hold on 'cheaper' rentals such as Toyota's but they have on their luxuary rentals such as their Audi's. You will find some rental comapnies don't make use of the 'hold security measure' but all of them are waking up to it. If your rental company say they require a credit card, they require a credit card to 'hold' some funds. Again, the banking system only always for holding of funds on credit cards not on debit cards.

Hope this helps. Shout if not!

Cheers

J

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Got this reply back from the Car Rental Company in NZ for our trip in September.

'We do accept payments made by Visa and MasterCard Debit Cards. Please note it you decide to use this to make payment this will be treated as a credit card payment and you will be subject to normal credit card surcharges, 2.5%.'

Think its best to get in contact with the company and ask them! Glad for your post because now I have sorted out our problem as well! :ilikeit:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...