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Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

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Mumbai (Bombay...
posts: 2
reviews: 1
Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

Hello: I am traveling with my wife and 2 kids (6 & 7) and was wondering if anybody had any reference to hire a good driver to take us around Morocco for around 8 days. I was at first open to driving, but would like to get some references of drivers that you may have experienced with.

London, United...
Destination Expert
for Morocco
posts: 4,538
reviews: 33
1. Re: Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

Sticking 'driver' into search button will bring up literally hundreds of past threads.

Be aware that drivers and guides are not the same thing.

Long Island City
posts: 18
reviews: 48
2. Re: Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

Driving in Morocco is OK if you are very careful, Moroccans are terrible drivers, they are also super dangerous on bikes, motorbikes, foot or donkeys. To make things even worse, the police is completely corrupt, they keep stopping you accusing of whatever they can think of (speeding, supposedly missing papers), and threaten you of a fine until you give them cash, 50 dirhams or so.

For this reason, if you want to avoid the hassle, get a driver. If you can afford a guide, get one too, because the other hassle he will protect you from is the never ending harassment for the scum that's littering the streets of the main towns, people offering drugs or worse and trying to sell you useless nasty goods and contaminated food.

Morocco is beautiful but the population is reflecting their corrupt decadent retarded society.

London, United...
Destination Expert
for Morocco
posts: 4,538
reviews: 33
3. Re: Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

Well, that's one view. I've always driven a car or riden a motorbike in Morocco. You really shouldn't encounter any problems with the police unless you've been speeding.

My goodness, CuriousFlyer, you really have a poor opinion of Moroccans! You can't generalise about a nation of 30+ million people based on some inner city problems. Away from the tourist areas which attract scammers (like many other places around the world) they are a warm, friendly people.

Get out more and see the real Morocco away from downtown Marrakech.

El Jadida, Morocco
posts: 216
reviews: 422
4. Re: Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

"corrupt decadent retarded society."

I've rarely heard such racist vileness. Should we judge New York, indeed the USA, by the crack and gun dealers in the poorer areas?

Just a reassurance for the OP. The food is not "contaminated". You need simply to apply common sense. Eat where lots of locals eat - the food will be fresh. Or eat at "posh" places. With an attitude like CuriousFlyers', I can see why the traffic cops didn't like him/her very much. If you drive (and I don't, it frightens me too much) when you see a cop, slow down slightly, salute him or her and continue. I've driven hundreds of miles with friends with cars all over Morocco and we have never had the problems outlined above. If you do have a problem, insist on the cop's name and his base. Oh, and don't exceed the speed limit, of course!

marrakech
Destination Expert
for Morocco
posts: 6,779
reviews: 60
5. Re: Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

Hi,

There really is no place for such nastiness and racism as displayed by poster number 2 on a family friendly forum and their "experience" is very different to the majority of visitors (thankfully) whether driving or not.

Edited: 7:30 am, January 01, 2013
Ottawa, Canada
posts: 114
reviews: 25
6. Re: Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

Having spent afew weeks in Morocco, touring the country, myview is that it is simpler and far less a hassle to hire a recommended driver. There are several ones listed here on tripadvisor that get excellent reviews, and we used one of them.

The motorways and highways were very easy to travel, but it is really within the cities that things get crazy. I am not lacking in driving confidence, but you could not pay me enough money to drive in Casablanca or Marrakesh. Same goes for driving in Rome, Athens or Lima Peru.

Enjoy yourself and forget the headaches!

Marrakech
Destination Expert
for Marrakech
posts: 3,167
7. Re: Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

Depending on where you want to go you may not need to rent a car or hire a driver.

It is not advantageous to have a car in the cities. For example, in Marrakech most places of interest are easily walkable within the medina.

It is possible to take buses and trains to some cities, and you can arrange day excursions with a tour operator.

Long Island City
posts: 18
reviews: 48
8. Re: Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

Interesting replies. Well I am sticking to my initial post. I have been to many countries and Morocco is where I have seen the most awful situation. Just read a few other threads in this very forum, make a search on "Morocco corruption" on Tripadvisor, you will see I am not the only person who is apalled by the situation in this country. And as many comments point out, this situation has a very negative effect on the tourism industry in general... Going to Morocco is very interesting and the country is beautiful, and most people out of the beaten path are very nice, but no it will not be a nice experience until the authorities sort their problems out and make it a truly welcoming place, not just on paper.

Edited: 1:58 pm, January 02, 2013
El Jadida, Morocco
posts: 216
reviews: 422
9. Re: Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

I think I've written before that, apart from one regular contributor, who makes lurid accusations of the police putting tourists in prison for taking photos or smoking shisha and then getting huge bribes, which she has apparently paid many times, there is a dearth of posts in these forums of people posting about hassle or bribe taking by the Moroccan police, something that you, CuriousFlyer, are alleging.

Yes, just as in any tourist destination, there are many people who want to part you from your money, sometimes by trickery or by wearing you down with hassle. And as in any developing country, there are bored young people wanting to make an easy buck because they can't make one any other way.

But the original blanket condemnation of what is a destination that most people say they have enjoyed was beyond the pale, extrapolating from the actions of a few how everyone should view the whole country.

marrakech
Destination Expert
for Morocco
posts: 6,779
reviews: 60
10. Re: Hiring a driver or renting a car in Morocco

Thankfully CuriousFlyer is in the minority or Morocco would not have the huge numbers of tourists visiting each year and (most of them) enjoying their visit.