How to get around the Cape Verde islands
Travel within the Cape Verde islands is possible by taxi, which should cost no more than £5 by day or £8 at night. But check the price first in euros or Cape Verde escudos especially in Praia . Alternatively you can flag down an Aluguer - usually a Japanese minibus or open pick-up with seats in the back. These cost no more than 80p or 100 Cape Verde escudos for a journey. They depart when full, which can take a while, especially at night.The main run on Sal, the main Cape Verde tourist island is Santa maria to Espargos along the highway. But other routes operate to Palmeira and rarely to Pedra do Lume.
Travel around outer Cape Verde islands
On other Cape Verde islands, Aluguers are less common than on Sal. They usually travel between outlying villages and the main town early morning and late afternoon carrying commuters.There may not be a service at all at midday It is best to enquire of a driver, when he may be coming back or you could get stranded in some remote spot. Try asking "Quando voce va voltar?" Maintenance is poor but accidents so far infrequent due mostly to low traffic densities.
Sao Vicente and Santa AntaoSao Vicente has a regular scheduled bus service around all the main parts of Mindelo as well as aluguers. In Santa Antao there are often aluguers in the main squares of towns like Ribiera Grande or Ponta do Sol, which are usually much cheaper than on Sal. But negotiate before you enter.
Unlike on Sal aluguers do not like to accept European passengers. They expect you to hire one yourself and take the full charge which can be as much as £20 or £30 for even a short journey. It is absolutely essential to haggle in advance. A half day trip visiiting one of the remote beaches will set you back by at least £40 to £50.
S from Yorks found Boa Vista a bit rough
" Transport around the island is by 4X4 (including taxis) as roads (other than to the hotels) are very bad or dirt tracks or cobbled. On the flight back to Sal I was given the same seat on my boarding pass as a German tourist - fortunately the flight wasn't full so neither of us got bumped off. "
Fogo - getting to the volcanoIn Fogo the aluguer driver tried to make us pay for the whole vehicle and then managed to fill it up entirely with other people. As we were able to speak Portuguese, we were able to enlist the aid of the other passengers to help us stop him from cheating us. Best to take a taxi from the port and stick to it if you find a good one.
Problems with booking locally
T from London has some advice
"If you want to arrange transport within the islands do not use the phone as you will almost certainly be at cross-purposes, with whomever you are talking to, This is still the case face to face. It requires a trip to the airport which is 15 minutes by taxi. Take a numbered queuing ticket from the machine and watch carefully since despite the high literacy rate, they cannot count, when it comes to queuing. Check in times and flight times are flexible and it is best to be early. Do not rely on being called"
MaioThe aluguers are very rare here and you may end up paying for a private one. If you can find where they stop in Vila do Maio by the local grocery shop and after a long enough wait you can share to be driven up the Coast past the airport.
Brava - getting to Faja d`AguaThe bench in the back of Manuel Burgos` Toyota Hiace pickup is the only possible transport here. Aluguers meet the boat with a planned schedule that usually excludes Faja, so you must phone him.
Airport flight indicators rarely give information. At this airport someone will grab your bags and run off with them. Stop them. Otherwise you will be taken to a rogue taxi driver who will cheat you. Another trick is they sit in the cab with the engine running and when you pass over a high denomination note. they will screech off with your money. W from Yorks found out the hard way.
"This is NOT an International Airport. Having just returned this week, I have serious concerns over security. There is none. Even when the bleeper goes off - they just pass you through. No Food - No facilities. One and a half hours to get in through Immigration. They do not know the procedure - compared with Sal. The Airport is swarming with locals as soon as you go out of the building - hassling tired passengers for cigs, money, taxis etc.The runway appears to be very short. As soon as the plane has braked it sweves to catch onto the slip road to park up. Again on departure, as soon as you know you are wheels off the ground, you look below and find that is the end of the runway. No room for a single error of metres. I for one, and my travelling colleague will never use this airport again in its present state. This is an airport heading for trouble."