3 Things I’ve Learned While Driving In Thailand

Living in Thailand is an eye-opening experience in many ways, but driving here is a whole other thing. These 3 things are the most interesting and strange to me.

3 Things

1. Who Needs a Car?

~~When you can have a scooter instead?~~

This one amazes, scares, and infuriates me all at the same time. There are many people who own cars here, but still many more people cannot afford the cost and so they have scooters. And often times on those scooters, they carry their WHOLE family. All at the same time. It is not uncommon to see up to 5 people straddling a scooter, all without helmets. Or to see a whole group of students leaving the local elementary school all together on one scooter sans parent or helmets.

By Ines Yeh (originally posted to Flickr as Hua Hin Town) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
A whole family and only one helmet. The only law about helmets here in Thailand is that the “driver” has to wear one. Crazy right?!  By Ines Yeh (originally posted to Flickr as Hua Hin Town) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

2. As Long as It’s On Your Head It’s a Helmet.

~~Okay, besides a beanie maybe~~

I have seen people wearing bike helmets and hard hats. Not sure that those are legal, but maybe they help a little? Hopefully they never find out.

 

This guy should obviously be on a scooter! By Palmer, Alfred T., photographer. (Farm Security Administration - Office of War Information Collection) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
This guy should obviously be on a scooter! By Palmer, Alfred T., photographer. (Farm Security Administration – Office of War Information Collection) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

3. Space is not necessary.

~~To drive that is.~~

You learn quickly here that the normal space needed for driving down a lane or road in the USA is vastly wider than most streets here. Roads that I would turn around and find another way back in California are a normal size road here. My driving in small spaces prowess is now on a whole higher level!

I could totally squeeze my way through this. (WT-en) Chmouel at English Wikivoyage [CC BY-SA 1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/1.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
I could totally squeeze my way through this. (WT-en) Chmouel at English Wikivoyage [CC BY-SA 1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/1.0)], via Wikimedia Commons 

 

Now it’s your turn! What are some of the crazy things you see on the roads where you live? Leave a comment and let’s chat!

 

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