Would you ever drive in a different country?

@maximax8 (28558)
United Kingdom
November 9, 2011 10:50am CST
I know a German lady and she moved to England six years ago. She feels too scared to drive on the left side of the road. All her life she has been used to people driving on the right side of the road. She has to get buses and trains where she goes all the time. Which side of the road do people drive on in your home country? Have you ever driven in a different country? Would you feel too challenged to have to drive on the other side of the road to which you are used to?
2 people like this
24 responses
@owlwings (39752)
• Cambridge, England
9 Nov 11
It is actually far easier to drive on the opposite side of the road than the one you are used to, especially if you are driving a car with the driver's position on the correct side. In the first place, most of the road signs and traffic directions (at least on the main roads) are designed to make it easier for traffic to follow the correct lane and secondly, it is not as difficult as you might think to 'mirror' nearly everything that you do. The only thing that I have found disconcerting is the slightly different signs and rules in different countries - especially the ones about giving way to traffic entering from a side turning - and the fact that traffic lights are not always where you expect them to be. My brother lives in America and often works in Italy. I don't think that he learned to drive in the UK, so most of his driving has been in countries where one drives on the right. When he comes to England he usually hires a car and has no difficulty whatsoever in driving on the left. When I have been to France, I found that it took maybe 10 or 15 minutes to acclimatise myself. All the other traffic is going the same way as you, so everything works quite well.
1 person likes this
@owlwings (39752)
• Cambridge, England
9 Nov 11
Correction: "It is actually far easier than one might think to drive on the opposite side of the road than the one you are used to, especially if you are driving a car with the driver's position on the correct side."
@NailTech (6890)
• United States
9 Feb 12
Well that is a huge transition and I can see why she might be afraid to drive in a different country again. Perhaps she can get retrained on how to drive again in her new country, she can take some driving lessons and they might help her out. On the other hand if she's more comfortable with trains and buses then so be it too. It's her life, and I'm not sure I could get used to the fact of driving so differently either. It can be quite a challenge, I'm sure.
@squallming (1776)
• Malaysia
31 Jan 12
In Malaysia, we drive by the left side of road which is supposed to be the same with England as you mentioned. I have never driven a vehicle in other countries and I haven't been able to visit other countries. But if I really do get there, I think I will need to get another license to drive as every country have may have different rules. Of course switching to right side of the road will take me a while to adapt but it shouldn't be much of a problem.
@kingparker (9698)
• United States
17 Nov 11
I won't be scared to drive in a different country, as long as they accept my driver's license, or they accept the permit I have to drive. Anyway, I knew Hongkong and England drive on right side of the road, and I am living in the U.S.A I get used to drive on left side. So, it is matter of get used to it. I will try, no matter what.
@curmont (343)
• United States
14 Nov 11
It can be a very strange feeling driving on the other side of the road but in a lot of ways I think it equates to the same way it can feel strange to drive a new car after years of driving your old one. It is strange and can be a bit unnerving at first but soon you get used to the way it handles and it comes as second nature. If you can get over your initial fears you will soon grow used to it and it will be soon be a matter of habit.
@bounce58 (17524)
• Canada
14 Nov 11
All the countries I've been to, it's always been driving on the right side of the road. Although I wouldn't say I'm afraid, but it would surely take some getting used to if I started driving on the left. I wouldn't dare drive on a busy street my first time out as surely my reflexes would be a little confused. And I might just be an accident waiting to happen.
@writersedge (22579)
• United States
14 Nov 11
Rigth side of the road. I think I would forget and end up driving on the wrong side. I drive without much thinking. Just think about people with Alzheimers and who have flash backs. Since cars were invented in the states by Henry Ford and we drive on the right, why, oh why, do Brits drive on the left? That has never made any sense to me. I've always wanted to ask someone why they drive on the left. Do you know?
@albto_568 (1268)
• Costa Rica
14 Nov 11
I have driven in other countries, Panamá, Colombia, Guatemala, The United States, but all this countries, has transit regulations, and laws, more or less the same as mine, with similar transit signs as well, and, I know the language of this countries, maybe I will fell insecure, driving in the Great Britain, or in other country that drives in the left side, I would be terrified to find a car, driving in front of me, if I forget....or, if I ever go to a country, which language I don´t undrestand, I think that I would like to go with a person of this country, next to me, in the car, just in case..:)
@jillhill (37383)
• United States
11 Nov 11
I have never driven in another country. I think it would be challenging to drive on the opposite side of the road. We drive on the right side.
10 Nov 11
I have driven abroad on many occasions and would always feel comfortable driving even on the other side and if using a car that is left hand drive. In fact I enjoy driving abroad a lot so would always opt to be the driver.
10 Nov 11
I would like to drive on the Autobahn in particular, I would probably prefer to hire a left hand drive car than use a right hand drive car.
@wongchoiyee (7420)
• Malaysia
10 Nov 11
I drive the left lane usually it is for the slow driver but sometimes I drive right lane too. Yes I feel challenged when people honk me.
@leeloo (1494)
• Portugal
10 Nov 11
I have driven on both sides of the road, in various countries. I nearly had an accident a few years ago and for a few years the idea of driving petrified me. What I did was start out slow, I actually went to a driving school, the fact that there was someone next to me that could control the car if I was unable to made me relax and just get in touch with the enjoyment of driving. It can be confusing adjusting to driving on the opposite side to which you are used to, but it is possible, in the UK there are tracks that allow people to practice with their cars and then there is always sunday afternoons, and going to areas with little or no traffic just to get the feel for the city.
@jtj_hello (627)
• Philippines
10 Nov 11
We drive on the left side. I know how that poor girl feels. It is really scary and it's difficult to adjust to things you already got used too. Driving is a very good skill but sometimes you need to know if driving a car going to different places is okay. If I were that girl, I will surely ride the bus or any public vehicle aswell rather than to take my chance and hit someone or worst hurt myself.
10 Nov 11
The driving in england is very strange.it is not good for a new one which moves to England!
• United States
10 Nov 11
We drive on the right side of the road here. I've never traveled to another country, but if i had the opportunity I don't think I would drive if I were in a foreign country. I barely trust my driving skills now, so I don't think I would feel comfortable driving in a different country.
• United States
10 Nov 11
I live in the United States and drive on the right side of the road. But I lived in Japan for 3 years and had to drive on the left. I was surprised by how quickly I got used to doing this. In fact, when I first moved back to the states I had to get used to driving on the right again and would hold up my hand to make sure I was doing it right...as if the cars heading towards me werent a good indicator.
@ShepherdSpy (8562)
• Omagh, Northern Ireland
9 Nov 11
Though I've never gone on a driving holiday in Europe or the US,I have driven hire cars in Germany and the US while visiting..I have to say,I'd prefer to drive an Automatic while away than a manual -it's too much like learning to drive all over again having to change gear right handed!
@greenline (14864)
• Canada
9 Nov 11
Hello Maxi. I do have an interenational driver's license. I take it along whenever I travel overseas, just in case. But, I very seldom drive when I am in another country. I just could not forget the bad experience I had one time when I was fined for driving along a buslane. I just don't know how I missed seeing the sign !
@skysuccess (8882)
• Singapore
9 Nov 11
maximax8, As a qualified driver, I do not have any problem with driving everywhere in the world left or right. However, I usually do that on holiday vacation trips when most of my business trips are being attended by chauffeur driven limos. Besides, driving on vacation is just simply more relaxing hence fun then on business which is more distracting.