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Drive On The Right Hand Side Of The Road.

Drive On The Right Hand Side Of The Road.

 Monument valley Arizona image

I live in the UK and we drive on the left hand side of the road.  I didn’t think that it would be so bad, to drive on the right hand side of the road.  Just the reverse of driving on the left right?  Well sort of.  When I first made a right turn into a sharp immediate right lane, it was a bit awkward. However, I perservered and made it back from the Shopping Mall.  I think I made the trip on three separate occassions within a week.

All in all, my experience of driving on the right hand side of the road is minimal.  And I don’t mind admitting I would be a bit nervous if I were to do it again any time soon.  What I found out (after the fact). Was that on US cars, the speedometers are in Kilometers (metric).  Coming from the UK and rather old school, I think in miles. On holiday in Arizona back in the 90s. I decided to show my bravado by asking my friend if I could drive her car again. Remember, I already had a few practice runs to the Shopping Mall, So I was feeling confident I could handle a longer journey.

There I Was behind the wheel, feeling kinda good.  We were dropping off another friend from Tempe to Pheonix.  I was doing it, driving on the freeway in Arizon.  Feeling confident and relaxed that I was driving in the US of A.  Suddenly cars were catching up to me and started blowing their horns at me and speeding past when they could.  I thought wow, didn’t think anywhere was worst the the UK for impatient drivers.  Until my passengers told me that I was driving too slow.

Freeway image

I looked at the speedometer it was showing 55, “I’m doing 55 miles an hour”. They shouted “KILOMETERS”. “What the heck does that mean”, I said. They shouted, ( simutaneously), “YOU’RE DRIVING TOO SLOW”. I later found out that I was doing around 34 miles on a 55 mile a hour freeway. (or there abouts). Lesson learned, remember that the speedometer reads in kilmeters NOT miles when in the US in future.

Fast forward at least 10 years after my Arizona experience.  I decided to drive on the right hand side of the road again. It was in France and very fast, but I had no problems and was reasonabably comfortable doing it. Could have been because I was following someone else, but hey, I did it!

These Countries Drive On The Right Hand Side Of The Road.

United States, Canada, Italy, France, Egypt, South American, Belgium.

These Countries Drive On The Left Hand Side Of The Road.

United Kingdom, Ireland, Isle of Man, Malta and Cyprus, Thailand, Australia, Bahamas,  Singapore and New Zealand,

Now, let me just make this clear. Here in the UK, we drive of the LEFT HAND SIDE of the road.  For any of our US, Canadian, Itailian, French and other friends across the waters.  If you are thinking about visiting the UK during the Olympic Games, and thinking about driving.  It’s the LEFT hand side okay?  If you want to compare the prices of car hire, see our car hire information page for more details. while here.

It doesn’t really matter which side of the road we all drive on.  So long as we all drive safely.  Just because the UK drives on the left, and Most other European Countries drive on the right hand side of the road.  (the wrong side, just kidding).  It doesn’t mean you have to drive at all if you visit the UK.  You could also visit a number of different cities, via one of the many travel tours available across the Country.

Car hire can be quite expensive if you don’t shop around, compare prices and get the best deal you can!

2 Responses to “Drive On The Right Hand Side Of The Road.”

  • david says:

    That’s a great story. Although, I must say being from the US, our cars usually show BOTH miles and Kilometers. I am wondering what make / model of car you were driving that ONLY showed kilometers? I’ve never seen that before.

    Nice point about Australia and New Zealand driving on the LEFT side of the road. I did not know that. I did know it is like that in the UK, but I didn’t know about NZ and Australia.

    • AJ - Fantastic Travels Blog says:

      Thanks David, this actually happened in 1990. So a little fuzzy with the speedometer thing. What I remember is them telling me it was kilometers, not miles lol. Thanks for your comments.

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