Road Trip: How To Drive Safely In A Foreign Country


There’s no better way to spend a vacation than driving through a foreign country. It’s an incredible way to explore and see things you wouldn’t on the beaten track. Sure, a quintessential American road trip is cool too, but you can do that at any time. Driving through the Americas or Europe is a once-in-a-lifetime experience everyone will enjoy.


However, there is one side-effect: accidents. Europeans don’t follow the same rules and some don’t even drive on the right-hand side of the road. As a result, it can be intimidating and a little bit unsafe.

Here’s how to secure you and your family on the trip.

Choose An Automatic

Outside of the US and Canada, manuals with gear shifters are the norm. If you haven’t driven one in a while, it will take a while to get used to the process. So, driving on narrow, windy roads in the middle of Italy may not be the best place to take a refresher course. Okay, you want the whole experience yet there are a few things which won’t make much of a difference. Driving a manual vehicle is one of them. An automatic should feel familiar and make you more comfortable and less stressed, therefore less likely to do something silly.

Choose Familiar Conditions

Like the car, you want the roads to be familiar too. Any nasty surprise and you may end up in an accident. Personal injury lawyers such as Hupy and Abraham see this all of the time with foreign drivers in the UK. Because they drive on the left-hand side of the road, head-on collisions are pretty common. The same goes for fender benders when the streets aren’t wide as depth perception becomes a problem. Thankfully, lots of countries and cities model themselves on the American model, Budapest in Hungary being a typical example.

Use A GPS

And get the passenger to act as a navigator. Firstly, you won’t know where you are going because you’ve never been there before. In English speaking countries, it’s not too hard to deduce the right direction of travel. In places where English isn’t the main language, it’s going to be ten times trickier. However, trying to listen to what the GPS has to say will impair your focus. So, the passenger should double check and tell you what to do and when to do it. Don’t worry if there isn’t a sat nav in the car; you can use Google Maps on your cell.

Stick To The Basics

For example, don’t drive tried as you’ll be likely to make a mistake. And, an error in a foreign country may be twice as damaging as at home. Also, don’t speed. The limits are there to keep everybody safe, which is why the clock on the dash should limit out at 60mph to 70mph. Finally, leave with plenty of time and don’t try and cram in too much driving.

Doing this causes you to rush and do things you wouldn’t if you were relaxed behind the wheel.

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