Tips for driving on unfamiliar roads

Published on 26 January 2014

Driving on unfamiliar roads can be unnerving for many drivers. Indeed, doing so immediately puts drivers at a disadvantage, especially if you are driving at busy times or in wet conditions. Whether those roads are in Ireland or abroad, there are some things you can do to make your journey a more pleasant one.

Simple planning can make all the difference. Before you go, plan your route. If you don’t own a Satnav, Google Maps is a fantastic invention for drivers, but make sure you map out your route before you go so that you don’t have to keep checking your directions. If you do want to check your directions on the road, pull over before you touch your phone or paper. You can remember the directions by familiarising yourself with landmarks ahead of taking off.

If you’re travelling abroad, know the local traffic laws so that you have an insight into where you are driving. When travelling on the island of Ireland remember that local speed limits are displayed differently in north and south. The Republic of Ireland switched from imperial speeds to metric speeds in 2005. The UK is yet to do so, so Northern Ireland speed limits will refer to miles per hour.

When driving in unchartered territories, be alert. If you’re from the city and visiting a rural area, be mindful of unusual hazards such as animals or walkers on the road. If it’s a case of vice versa beware of busy traffic or night time pedestrians.

Finally, locals can sometimes be more helpful than a map, so if you’re unsure, ask.


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