Driving

Newcomers (18+) may drive on a valid foreign driver’s licence for three months before getting a St Helena one from the Post Office which is renewable, annually at a cost of £13.50.

Local Regulations

Driving is on the left-hand side of the road. Local driving etiquette requires vehicles going downhill to give way to upcoming traffic.  Roads are mainly one-lane, cover hilly terrain and have hairpin bends.  Use passing bays on single track roads, like Ladder Hill and Side Path, both of which lead into Jamestown.  The maximum speed limit is 30mph and drivers proficient in reversing and handbrake use would feel more confident. 

Traffic is heavier in Jamestown and parking during business hours can be tight.

A Vehicle for St Helena

When considering a vehicle to bring; most cars are suitable for the terrain and those with power steering and a medium sized engine of 1400cc and over would be advantageous.  Common makes (Ford, Nissan, Toyota) increases the likelihood of spare parts being available and for the vehicle to be more easily serviced.  

It is advisable to bring general service spares, including brake pads and linings (which wear out relatively quickly), filters, bulbs and any special parts that may need replacing. 

Fuel Prices

Diesel and unleaded fuel is sold on the Island.

Filling stations are located in Jamestown, Longwood and Half Tree Hollow.

Fuel price per litre (11 Aug 2021) at all three filling stations is £1.45 for diesel and £1.37 for petrol.

Used Cars On Island

There is a second-hand car market, but these cars may be older and more expensive than in the UK as car owners add on the freight and duty costs of getting the vehicle to the Island.  Those seeking to buy a vehicle on island are recommended to look at the expatriate community or one of the local garages.

Importing A Vehicle

If you intend to bring a vehicle to the island, the current customs tariff on vehicles is based on fixed incremental rates of duty pending the emission band in which it falls.  You will be expected to pay the full amount of duty on the vehicle before you can collect at customs.  If you do not have sufficient funds to do so at that particular point in time, arrangements can be made for an advance through Central HR, which will be paid directly to the customs department, with the agreement that the officers repayments can be made through monthly deductions from salary over a maximum period of six months.  

The current customs tariff on vehicles is based on fixed incremental rates of duty pending the emission band in which it falls:

Emission BandsTax rate per vehicle (£)
0g per km£200
1-100g per km£450
101-120g per km£900
121-165g per km£1,260
166-185g per km£1,530
185-200g per km£2,660
> 200g per km£3,500
Motorcycles have a fixed rate of £700

Vehicles are to be licenced and insured, and renewed annually.  

New vehicles brought to the Island may not require an MOT test, on the condition that supporting documentation is provided and with approval from the Police Directorate. 

Vehicle insurance is available from Solomon & Company Plc, you may contact them directly to obtain a quote.

Other Ways To Get Around

For Public Transport, Hire Cars and Taxis, see the Useful Information page.

Shopping Basket