Driving in - an international driver's guide
Driving in - An international driver's guide.

Driving in The USA - The United States of America

Every state in the United States has different laws related to driving. However, there are some common rules and regulations that you should be aware of for driving in the United States might not be as easy as you think it is. Each of the 50 states has their own laws. Luckily, many of the laws are same but some states have different laws. You must ask your car rental agent for special instructions relating to the state you will be driving in.

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In the USA, there are several toll roads known as Turnpikes. The tolls are based on the distance you have driven. Generally, you are issued a ticket when you approach a turnpike. However, if you reach the end of the turnpike in a certain amount of time which shows that you have been speeding, you will be given a ticket. In order to know about the different toll roads throughout the USA you must contact local transport representatives.

If you are a member of the American Automobile Association, you might be given some benefits while renting your car, so you must carry your card as proof. There are AAA offices in every city and these offices can help you in directions, tourist’s discounts, maps etc.

In the United States, different states are connected by long stretches of roads known as interstate highways. Some of these highways require you to pay tolls. All the highways running north to south are odd numbered and the ones running east to west are even numbered. If you are driving nearer to Mexico, you will notice that the highways are numbered between 1 through 8 and 1 through 10 and if you are nearer to the Canadian border, the highways will be numbered between 1 and 94.

You must be familiar with the map of the region you are planning to traverse. Some routes should be avoided as they are dangerously inhabited by criminals who target tourists. You must carry provisions such as food and drinks with you while driving. Try to find out the rush hour times in the city you are in so that you can avoid heavy traffic. Driving is most difficult at this point. The United States makes excellent provisions for disabled drivers. Controlled vehicles are available in several car rental companies such as Hertz, Budget and Avis.

You must follow certain rules before travelling. Fatigue or drowsiness is common on long journeys; therefore carry with you ample amounts of food and water to keep you hydrated. Plan your trip efficiently before leaving and always carry a United States road map. Do not carry large amounts of cash or jewelry and make sure you store it away safely, out of sight. Seatbelts are compulsory at all times both at the front and back. Drinking and driving laws in the US are strict so make sure you do not violate that.

Legal requirements vary accordingly in different states. You do not have to carry an International Driving License if you have a valid license. However, in most cases you must have held your license for a year at least. The driver’s license must have your photograph on it. If not, carry your passport at all times. You are required to use your headlights while driving if it is raining.

Additional Information

(Latest Update: 20/09/2013)


All information on this page is provided as a service to our users. It is not meant to be a comprehensive document, though we try to keep it as updated as we can. We cannot be held responsible in any way for any consequences arising from any inaccuracies.
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