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Old 01-23-2016, 03:05 AM   #1
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Driving in the UK

I've been in the Manchester area this last week and I'm heading home in an hour or two from Heathrow.

Been a long time since I rented a car in the UK but it made more sense on this trip because of the area of travel.

Quite nerve wracking to drive on the left - decades of driving on the right made it feel very weird. Even after several days of driving here, sitting on the right side of the car and driving on the left side of the road was a challenge.

Add in the ridiculously narrow roads, the roundabouts with unintelligible signs, and the many drivers doing their best Mario Andretti impersonation, and I'm just happy to get out of here in one piece.
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Old 01-23-2016, 03:42 AM   #2
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Welcome home.
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Old 01-23-2016, 03:43 AM   #3
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When we are in London next fall we aren't renting a car there cause just a few days--but will rent for a month in France driving from Paris down to Perigueux and all around that area.

Just getting a small Fiat or something...Glad it will be Doug doing all the driving! I haven't driven a stick shift in years!! But it is on the proper side of the road isn't it??

The other three we are going with will rent a bigger car so all 5 of us can fit in it to go certain areas...
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Old 01-23-2016, 06:17 AM   #4
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My brother, who has driven a few times on the left side of the road, says he keeps thinking, keep the passenger in the ditch.

I can only imagine how weird it would be. More the driving on the left, than driving a left handed vehicle.
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Old 01-23-2016, 07:02 AM   #5
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Old 01-23-2016, 07:41 AM   #6
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My only experience driving on the left was in New Zealand. After an all night flight, the last thing I needed was a traffic circle that went the wrong way going out of the airport. Welcome to New Zealand.
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Old 01-23-2016, 11:49 AM   #7
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I found that for me the switch to driving a manual transmission right side drive car on the LHS of the roads was mostly painless. I did find myself unintentionally turning on the wipers when I wanted to use the turn signals or vice versa. When I did finally get back home and back into my left side drive car, it took a while before I stopped flipping on the wipers to change lanes.
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Old 01-23-2016, 12:03 PM   #8
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I found that for me the switch to driving a manual transmission right side drive car on the LHS of the roads was mostly painless. I did find myself unintentionally turning on the wipers when I wanted to use the turn signals or vice versa. When I did finally get back home and back into my left side drive car, it took a while before I stopped flipping on the wipers to change lanes.
That happens to me just changing from driving our car to the truck, wipers on the right side in car and left in the truck because it has gear shift on the right (bench seat)

Robert you didn't say whether you had manual. I found the once we rented in England (our honeymoon in 1974) the shifting with left hand not bad especially when the shift pattern is the same, was just funny shifting higher towards me instead of away!

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Old 01-23-2016, 01:19 PM   #9
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Quite nerve wracking to drive on the left - decades of driving on the right made it feel very weird.
A few more days and it does actually start to feel normal. I've driven in the UK and, yes, some roads with hedges growing right to the road are twisty and blind, and St. Lucia, the only way to get from the local airport in the North to the international one in the South, is to rent a car and drive over the twisty mountain roads. Australia's the easiest country to drive on the wrong side of the road, especially in the great red center. New Zealand has a lot of very twisty narrow mountain roads. Those Kiwi's have a great sense of humor. Blasting down a twisty mountain road heading for a hairpin and see a speed limit sign, 100 kph.

Loved the Mercedes van. Almost went over to the dark side. However it was quite narrow. If I had one I'd want the one with a widened body. The ability to open up the rear doors was a nice feature. The lake is Lake Taupo.

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Old 01-23-2016, 02:04 PM   #10
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Try driving in Poland back in the early '90s before the Iron Curtain really came down. Few maps, fewer road signs. And what they did have were in Polish and Cyrillic to boot. Imagine that. I was in a traffic circle for ten minutes, I swear, laughing so hard as I didn't know where to get out of it. Fortunately, my aunt and uncle were with me so laughing at our situation became the stuff of later stories.
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