Staying safe on NZ roads must be a concern for those Tourists self-driving around our country.
Especially if you have seen reports on the news with so many accidents involving tourists on NZ roads. Find out how to stay safe.
New Zealand roads could well be entirely different to roads that you are used to. Driving on the left side of the road and with the steering on the right side of the car is enough to course chaos. Not to mention the hills twists and turns, narrow roads with many out of the way roads also being loose metal. You can get ice during the winter months and sunstrike at any time. All this and then you also have to get used to the overconfident local drivers of which are known to take risks and drive too quickly.
It does not take too long, living in NZ, to figure out some of the major issues that cause trouble on the road. Here is a breakdown of some main points I see causing issues.
- Not knowing where you are going. I see this all of the time. People changing lanes on the motorway in a last-second hurry before they end up missing the turn off etc. GPS is the best option if you are new to an area and need a little direction.
- Driving to the conditions. I also see this all of the time. It can be pouring with rain or foggy and people still drive like a bull at a gate.
- Too slow. I know that this sounds silly but if you drive at a super slow pace then it is obvious that those behind you are just going to become impatient and they will take passing risks. Pull over if you’re stuck in a slow mode and just let the traffic pass and clear before you continue.
- Stay Left. I know that many oversea’s visitors are not used to driving on the left side of the road. That is why many tourists crash in NZ. You have to always stay mindful and concentrate on driving on the left at all times. You may also find that the steering is weird on the right of the car but this is your handicap and you have to be extra careful and master these changes to drive safely.
- Don’t Drive Tired. You will not believe how many people fall asleep at the wheel. Get your rest and be safe. Don’t drive directly from the airport rest up for 24 hrs first it may save your life.
Also, keep in mind
New Zealand roads can be a little rough in places. You often come across potholes, deep ditches on the sides, and the roads can be extremely narrow and windy so again concentration is the key. Some Kiwi drivers can be a little aggressive and impatient at times so the best way to deal with it is to find a safe spot, pull over and let them pass.
Passing lanes often cause accidents too. There is no point trying to pass if the passing lane is about to run out. Just wait till the next one. Patience is a virtue.
The main thing is to be safe, be careful and if you have never driven in NZ before, read up on the road rules before you get behind the wheel.
Hope this helped