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53

Rent the car! Los Angeles is built for cars. It has some of the worst public transportation imaginable, ever since General Motors conspired to eliminate the city's trolley system. Yes, there are busses and taxis, but you will find that busses take forever (and get stuck in the same traffic), and taxis are hard to find and expensive. Only 11% of Los Angeles ...


35

The pedals are the same The gear shift stays in the middle of the vehicle, so you'll have to get used to operating it with your left hand The arrangement of gears also is the same, so top left is the 1st gear, etc. Also, people who use the right foot to control the clutch should not be allowed to operate a can opener, let alone a car.


33

If he/she is coming from behind, it means normally: You are slow, drive faster or change the lane ! The frequency of the light blinking indicate the urgency, a short one after a while means "Please ?" a whole flurry of it means "GET OUT OF THE F****** LANE, YOU STUPID SNEAKER !!". And no, it is not an exaggeration, Germans can be very offensive behind a ...


31

It usually means get your slow ass out of the way. The main Autobahns have three lanes: Outer, for trucks. Nominal speed 100km/h. Middle, for normal driving. Nominal speed 160-180km/h. Inner lane, passing. Nominal speed: faster than you. If you are driving in the inner lane and someone flashes their headlights at you, it means move over to the middle ...


28

I've been living in the LA area (in Long Beach, exactly) for 7 months, being there for studying abroad. I made the choice of not buying a car and solely relying on public transit. Well... as said earlier, LA is clearly made for cars. Most busses don't take the freeways and move rather slowly. It depends on which route and which agency. Also, even if Metro ...


23

We recently caught the ferry from the UK to Europe and needed to have these stickers (for the other way around). We bought them before hand from UK car shop Halfords where they just call them "headlamp converters". We also found find that everything needed for driving in other countries was sold on the ferry. They sold the headlamp converters, the country ...


23

Yes you are obligated to respect the law. No judge will accept the fact of you being a foreigner. "gnorantia juris non excusat" applies. There seems to be some exceptions to this judicial principle in the US, but they apply to tax laws, see Wikipedia article for details. Your own country is even exploiting this requirement by inventing unreadable traffic ...


23

Are you after the physical answer, or the legal one? Presuming he still physically has his license, and it has an expiry date beyond when he will be renting the car, then he will most likely be able to physically rent a car. If he is pulled over by the police, then he will most likely be able to lie and claim that his license is valid, and he will probably ...


22

Bringing a car with you is just not worth it; you would have to pay ~USD 1800 (Well that's East coast->Rome, in the other direction rates might be different, but depends on the size of the car, dates etc.), and this does not include import taxes and all the hassle you will have at customs. For the same amount of money you could as well buy a used car in the ...


20

You can drive in any US state with a drivers license from any other US state. However, if your residence is no longer in CT, then you must get an OR driver's license. You can read the address FAQ on the OR DOT site, but basically it says if you change your residence, you need to change your address with the DMV. As long as you are in OR temporarily ...


20

It does vary a lot, depending on both the issuing and visited countries. For visiting Australia for an example, you either need your license to be in English, or have an IDP that translates it. There's a much narrower list of countries for whom getting an Australian license doesn't require a test, see here for more details on those things. As an ...


20

The other two answers pretty well covered things, but here are a few more notes: In some states, it is legal to make a left turn through a red light if both intersecting streets are one way. (In other words, one can treat the red light as a stop sign.) In some (maybe all?) states, one can be ticketed for driving too slow, even if there is no posted ...


20

Do I have to pay traffic fines issued by foreign governments? Yes, that's the law. Next year I'm planning a long stay in the US (around 6 months) and I want to bring my car with me. This is a whole other question, so I'll take it instead as a factor in your main question rather than go into the pros and cons of shipping a private vehicle. If your ...


20

The statement 'there is no speed limit on the Autobahn' is not really correct. I couldn't find any official statistics, but I've seen a number of only 50% of German Autobahns without any limit. Many parts have a permanent limits of 120 or 130 km/h (74 mph or 81 mph). Some parts are limited to 80 (50 mph) due to construction work. Also, some limits are only ...


20

Required under certain conditions: Outside populated areas: Italy, Hungary and Romania Indicated roads only: Portugal Motorcycles only: Belgium, France, Spain Recommended: Germany, Spain, France Required at all times: Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Montenegro, Norway, ...


20

After living in the USA for over 10 years, I moved to Europe. I did consider bringing my car from the USA to Europe, however later rejected that idea. Yet in the process I did look into various options. There are several shipping companies that will ship vehicles across the Atlantic, usually inside containers on a ship, but for the right price they'll do ...


18

I lived in DC/Northern VA area for the past four years. I can tell you riding Metro in the city is the way to go. Traffic in DC is very bad and on top of that the roads can be very very confusing for visitors. The worst part is probably the parking. During prime tourist hours, it's almost impossible to find one. I don't know which part of Maryland you'll be ...


17

Most Asian countries do not accept a foreign driving license as a valid document for driving vehicles, and legally most of them require International Driving Permits. In practice however, a lot of tourists do not bother to get an IDP and instead leave their passport wherever they are hiring a car/motorcycle from. If you get stopped by the traffic police ...


16

First off, I can't comprehend how anyone in their right mind would even consider doing something like this -- shooting yourself in the foot is not illegal, and you are free to do so if you so choose, but actively endangering other people's lives strikes me as.. how do I put it more politely -- idiotic. I can assure you that such kind of behaviour will not ...


16

Note that there ARE actually some speed limits: A hard limit is imposed on some vehicles: 60 km/h (37 mph) Buses carrying standing passengers Motorcycles pulling trailers 80 km/h (50 mph) Vehicles with maximum allowed weight exceeding 3.5 t (except passenger cars) Passenger cars and trucks with trailers Buses 100 km/h (62 mph) Passenger cars ...


16

It is an official signal and has a name: it is called Lichthupe in German. The German road-traffic regulations Straßenverkehrsordnung (StVO in short) mention this in two paragraphs: StVO § 5 (5) Outside of towns or villages a driver may warn oncoming traffic with the horn or the Lichthupe if he is going to overtake. StVO § 16 (1) A driver may warn ...


15

To me, these are the two most important things drivers visiting the US should know: Different states have different laws. Knowing what the law is in California doesn't help if you get pulled over in one of the other 49 states. Get your information from a trusted source. There's a lot of misinformation out there; the only way to know what the law really ...


15

I have been to LA several times and have used different kinds of transportation: car, public transport, bicycle and walking. I experienced the city very differently depending on how I got around. I agree LA is a car city and I would recommend to drive around at least once to get a feel for it, but using a bike or walking is always better if you really want ...


15

The mordida (nibble) is unfortunately deeply ingrained in Mexico, although mostly a feature of local police and not the federal police or the military, and there are various anti-corruption initiatives at work in the larger cities. Generally, the interaction involves being pulled over for a traffic offense like speeding or not wearing a seat belt. The ...


15

I actually don't think that driving lessons would help you. The cheapest trick is just to just do it. Thousands and thousands of drivers cross either the tunnel connecting the UK and France or the different ferries, daily. In both directions it seems to work out just fine. They only need to temporarly adjust their lamps. In some countries with neighboring ...


14

For European countries, you're at least technically supposed to have one. My friends got fined 250 euros each for riding scooters without international licenses in Barcelona. The scooter rental didn't request the license, but the cops cared.


14

I may be biased because I grew up there, but I'm a big fan of the beaches around Christchurch, Bournemouth and Poole. There is 7 miles of continuous sand from Sandbanks (Poole), past Bournemouth and on to Hengistbury Head (Christchurch). From Sandbanks, head across the mouth of Poole Harbour on the chain ferry, then you've another 5 miles of sandy beach ...


14

First, as long as you stay in the US, you are subject to US laws. The US can (and will) fine or arrest you if you violate US law. I believe that in the US even minor offenses can theoretically go up to a jail sentence (e.g. $100 fine or 3 days in jail). If you commit a traffic offense and try to leave the country without paying the fine, the US government ...


14

In Québec, a flashing green traffic light means that no cross-traffic can go, even the traffic on the same road coming from the other direction has a red light. This means that (if allowed) you can make a left turn without having to yield (except possibly to pedestrians in the cross street). See e.g. this or this advice on the peculiarities of driving in ...



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