Car-related travel questions. See also the "car-rental", "private-car", "driving", and "road-trip" tags.

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45
votes
4answers
7k views

Is there a ZIP code I can enter when paying-at-the-pump in the USA with a foreign credit card?

In the USA, many pay-at-the-pump fuel dispensers that accept credit cards require a 5-digit numeric zip code that corresponds to the billing address of the credit card. In Canada, for instance, we ...
28
votes
7answers
8k views

Car rental vs. buying a car for 1 month

I would like to visit a few places in the states sometime next year, and I was thinking of doing a road trip while I'm at it. I could start in either Los Angeles or Montreal, and then I would like to ...
24
votes
6answers
4k views

Flashing headlights on Autobahn

What does it mean when the driver behind you on the Autobahn flashes his headlights?
23
votes
7answers
518 views

How can I protect my vehicle when left at a trail head for an extended period?

Previously when I went backpacking, the vehicle I left behind at the trail head was, erm, not particularly worth stealing. I'm looking at new vehicles now, and somewhere in the back of my mind is "do ...
22
votes
3answers
7k views

Shipping my car from Europe to Canada or the U.S

The plan is to drive my car (a small 4x4) from Prudhoe Bay1 (Deadhorse), Alaska to Cape Horn, Tierra del Fuego in Chile. I will be travelling for an undetermined duration, with a minimum of two years. ...
20
votes
2answers
2k views

What's the name for the “blocking” stickers used on car headlights?

I'll be driving my car from Belgium to the UK, with plans to then drive around the country. Like most cars in the European mainland, my car's headlights/headlamps are slightly adjusted to the right ...
18
votes
2answers
408 views

Why do taxis in Japan have mirrors on the hood?

In every country I've been in - save for Japan - cars have their mirrors on their doors. Even most cars in Japan do but the taxis don't. Any ideas as to why? It just seems strange. Here's a pic: ...
18
votes
4answers
3k views

How much do roof racks hurt gas mileage?

I'm going on a big national car trip, and I want to increase cargo space by getting a roof rack, but I'm wondering how much the additional drag will increase my gas bill. Is there any way to figure ...
16
votes
2answers
1k views

How can I find which European countries require headlights on during daytime?

I know that the driving law in several countries in Europe require headlights on during daytime, some of them only in winter. But where can I find which countries have such a requirement? Just to ...
15
votes
3answers
2k views

How to drive a car from Australia to Europe?

I want to drive to Europe from Australia by shipping it to Asia and to drive from there onwards. Can someone tell me the cheapest way for shipping, which ports I should use for shipping and how much ...
15
votes
5answers
846 views

What does it take to make my car fully compliant with all EU countries?

In Belgium every car is required to carry at least one fire extinguisher. In Germany you need to have an environment sticker to drive into a city. In France you might need alcohol testers. Coming from ...
14
votes
4answers
520 views

How far away can I get with my car starting in Amsterdam?

It is a question I have been dreaming about since I can remember. Could I for example drive to Argentina from Amsterdam, or can I drive all the way to South-africa? What are the extremities of a ...
14
votes
7answers
3k views

What are the most effective rideshare sites in the US?

Recently, I have been traveling from upstate New York to NYC quite frequently and would like to find a site that is more effective than craigslist in attracting reliable rideshares for splitting gas ...
13
votes
1answer
2k views

Websites for car relocation in Europe?

Is there a good website for car/camper relocation in Europe ? I mean, those companies that allow you to rent a car/camper for free from point A to point B. Let's say between Netherlands and ...
12
votes
4answers
8k views

Driving in Iceland: a good idea?

For this summer I am thinking about going to Iceland. I would like to fly to Reykjavik, spend some days there, then rent a car, travel around the island and then fly back home. Now I have a few ...
12
votes
6answers
1k views

Are there advantages to using private car service over taxis from the airport?

When planning a trip I've seen people say private cars are scams and other people say they can be better than city taxi's because you know how much it will cost ahead of time. Are there any other ...
11
votes
3answers
860 views

What is the cheapest way to get from Thailand to Australia with a car?

Imagine I have a car in Thailand and I want to get Australia, is there any ferry that cross from Asia to Australia? How much is it? No problem if have to drive to another country or if there is no ...
11
votes
4answers
337 views

How can I get a reliable taxi/car service in LA?

I am fully aware LA is based around the car and has limited public transport. But I'm planning to be there a few days and will not be able to drive a car of any kind. I already have the airport ...
11
votes
3answers
394 views

Driving license in Australia

We will be in Australia for a few days and I was considering renting a car. Is a standard European license (we have Polish and Italian) good enough, or do we need "international driving license"? We ...
11
votes
3answers
1k views

What are my options for long term parking at Paris Charles de Gaulle?

I am flying from Paris on a two week holiday. The parking fees at the airport are quite expensive. Does anyone know alternatives?
11
votes
2answers
460 views

What is the quickest way to get a car from London to Iceland?

I am considering going to Iceland and was wondering if it is feasible to take there my car with me. The only way to get there by ferry that I could find is described here, which suggests getting to ...
11
votes
2answers
444 views

Insurance for campervan in NZ

I am traveling to New Zealand in May 2012 (I am a US citizen). I have been looking for a campervan to rent. Unfortunately, insurance seems to be quite expensive (or not very good. Some liability is up ...
11
votes
3answers
685 views

What is the cheapest and most efficient way to travel around Jamaica?

I'm thinking about going to Jamaica next spring, but I am pretty unfamiliar with the infrastructure of the country. I'd like to go to Ochos Rios and maybe Montego Bay for a few days, then make my way ...
11
votes
2answers
787 views

Are there any guarded parking lots anywhere in or near Berlin, Germany?

Are there any guarded parking lots in or around the city of Berlin in Germany? By guarded parking I do NOT mean "guarded" by an automated gate or camera - that is a joke. I mean a real guarded ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

Crashing a rental car abroad

What happens if I (a US citizen) rent a car in, say, the UK, and crash it because I was driving on the wrong side of the road? Do I have to pay the damages out of pocket? What if I don't have the ...
10
votes
2answers
334 views

If travelling through excessively cold regions, what steps should you take to keep your vehicle warm enough to drive?

Given the polar storm over the US at present, and temperatures hitting record lows, there's already reports of stranded motorists. I've once been in a situation where we needed to keep our engine ...
10
votes
3answers
198 views

How are road charges collected in France?

This summer we'll go to France by car for the first time. I noticed that some motorways on our route require road charge to be paid (in case it matters - we're going from Freiburg to Perpignan). How ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Foreign car insurance for Canada and/or the U.S

Still working on my plan to Ship my car from Europe to Canada or the U.S. We're planning on leaving early January. Shipping turns out not to be the problem. However, the next hurdle is: car ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

Are petrol prices in a USA state the same in every Petrol Station?

I'm wondering how petrol price works in USA in general, specifically in California. Do prices remain the same regardless of where the Petrol Station is located? Are prices fixed for every fuel ...
9
votes
3answers
760 views

Can go to Germany on all-year tires in winter?

I know that German law requires tires apt for snow in winter time. It's quite obvious that I cannot use summer tires, but can I go on universal all-year tires? What are the exact requirements?
9
votes
3answers
218 views

What needs to be done locally in case of a car accident while travelling in the US?

My friend is away from home right now; he lives in Ohio and has had a car accident in the state of New Jersey. What does he need to do locally before he can return home? He says a state trooper took ...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

Free parking in Bath UK

Where can I park in Bath for free, so that it's convenient for the town centre? I will be there 22nd Dec - 29th Dec, so on both holidays and normal weekdays.
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Is it possible for a foreigner to drive through (mainland) China in a foreign-registered car?

Is it possible to drive through mainland China, for example for transit from Kazakhstan to Vietnam, as a non-Chinese citizen, in an own car/van/truck? This is about an European Union citizen, trying ...
9
votes
1answer
455 views

Are in-car camera systems legal in Germany?

On Youtube I have seen a lot of videos like this with car accidents in Russia recorded by in-car cameras. Is it legal to use such a device in Germany? If an accident happens, can I use the video as a ...
9
votes
1answer
956 views

How does full-service gas work in Oregon?

I'm from a state in the US where all gas is self-service. When traveling to Oregon (where all gas stations are full-service), how does the process work? Do you just pull up to the pump and hand the ...
9
votes
1answer
303 views

Is there a map that shows Austrian winter road closures?

Some highways in Austria close for the winter season. For example, the Grossglockner High Alpine Road is closed until sometime in May. Where can I find a map that shows which roads are currently ...
8
votes
3answers
257 views

Preventing Smash and Grab Theft while Travelling

A piece on Slashdot asks a question that seems pertinent to this site. What measures can be taken to prevent 'smash and grab' - from your car, when your valuable stuff is inside the car. Aside ...
8
votes
2answers
99 views

Is there any kind of car museum anywhere in Okinawa?

After watching too many editions of Jay Leno's Garage on YouTube in the last few days, culminating in one about a '70s Japanese car, I started to wonder ... Is there any car museum or collection of ...
8
votes
2answers
322 views

Can I take multiple cars into Mexico from the U.S.?

I've taken my car into Mexico multiple times from the United States, on a Tourist visa. Is it possible to take more than one car registered to me at the same time (obviously with a second driver)?
8
votes
1answer
238 views

What are the differences between French road signs and American road signs?

I'm looking for a comparison between French road signs and American road signs, just like this one regarding European road signs. The more exhaustive comparison, the better, but I'm mostly interested ...
8
votes
1answer
828 views

Where can you park a camper in Munich?

I am going to Munich (Oktoberfest) tonight in my camper. Does anyone have any suggestions on where to park/sleep in Munich? Ideally I would like to park for free. Obviously I will not be able to park ...
8
votes
1answer
346 views

Do any of the ferries between Korea and Japan charge per car and not per person in a car?

I've travelled on ferries between Korea and Japan probably more than anyone else using our site so far, but there's one thing I never thought about until now: Do any of the ferries commonly take ...
8
votes
2answers
140 views

Can a non-US citizen drive my US car in Mexico?

I have a US-registered vehicle in Mexico. An American friend once told me that only other Americans can legally drive a US car in Mexico. That is to say, I cannot legally lend the car to a Mexican ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

How does one know if a rental car takes diesel or gasoline?

Quite unlikely, but what if I rent a car and forget to ask if it takes diesel or gasoline? Is it customary that it's written next to the gas tank inlet (I've only rented a car once, and this was the ...
7
votes
5answers
542 views

Car damage caused by potholes in the EU, what to do?

I'm driving often with my own car abroad (EU) and even on highways there are potholes. What can I do if my car gets damaged? Is there an EU-regulation or is it different in every country? What should ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

What is the minimum age to drive a rental car in the US?

I recognized that renting a car in the US is allowed at the age of 21 or 25. But are 18 to 21 year olds allowed to drive it if their parents or another 25 year old person signed the contract?
7
votes
2answers
315 views

What to do if I am involved in a road accident between two border controls?

If I travel from Hungary to Serbia, I have already passed the Hunagrian border control and then get involved in a road accident before entering Serbia (in the zone between the borders). Is this ...
7
votes
1answer
19k views

What is the difference between “Gazole” and “Diesel” in France

I am driving a car with a Diesel engine. I always thought that "Gazole" and "Diesel" were synonymous to each other, only to drive in a gas station which mentioned both terms, as in "Gazole" and ...
7
votes
1answer
408 views

Where to park a car near Hirtshals (Denmark)?

One of the options for a future trip to Iceland is to go to Hirtshals (Denmark) by car to take the ferry. This will allow us to take our own motorbikes so we don't need to rent one in Iceland. To ...
7
votes
1answer
232 views

Is a 4x4 a must in Iceland in April/May?

To rent a 4x4 small car is about 740 € (2 weeks) vs a small compact that is just 260 €. I have some experience driving off-road and I know that a "normal" car cannot go through some f-roads I've seen ...