Ashgabat - Post Report Question and Answers

What kind of car do you recommend bringing to post, given the terrain, availability of parts, burglary/carjacking risks, etc.? What kind of car do you advise not to bring?

A white one. All vehicles owned by locals are supposed to be white. We had a red car (black cars can not get through customs, but other colors were still being allowed for diplomats). Having a red car was fine, but we stuck out like crazy and the road police would often try to divert us off the protocol streets. Local staff will want to buy your car upon departure- so having a white car would also be helpful to them- otherwise they must have it professionally painted. - Dec 2020

Any kind is fine. Most parts will have to be ordered in. No problems with burglary or carjacking. If parking in a building underground garage, a smaller vehicle would be preferred. - Mar 2019

There are no terrain issues in Ashgabat. All paved roads. There are potholes on the small roads but generally, you should be able to use a small or large car equally well. You will find a lot of Japanese made models here. - Jun 2018

There are country restrictions to bring your car into country that change frequently so check before you make plans to bring yours. Reliable spare parts are hard to come by and reputable mechanics are even harder to come by. No issues with theft or carjackings. - Feb 2016

Anything is fine for Ashgabat, as the roads are new and immaculate. The government keeps reducing the age a car must be in order for it to be imported into Turkmenistan. Imported cars, I believe, now cannot be older than 5 years old. Bring parts, including oil, as an oil and filter change will run you more than US$50. There is an American who owns his own body and service shop that the embassy uses for its fleet. No real theft or car jacking concerns. - Jul 2014

Bring something you don’t care about if it gets scratched, damaged, dinged, or wrecked. The Turkmen are probably the worst drivers in the world. They are aggressive and have no regard for the rules of the road (not that there are any rules of the road in Turkmenistan). A 4x4 is preferred since the roads are terrible. - Oct 2012

Ashgabat has great roads. If you're a city dweller, any car will do. If you think you're going to go camping every weekend, then a beefier vehicle. - Mar 2012

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