Driving in Thailand is on the left. ( most of the time)
Thailand, has an extensive road network across the country with reasonable sign directions in both Thai and English.
The countryside is generally flat in the central regions but still very attractive particularly in the northern hills and along the southern beaches.
As you know most Thai people are usually warm, friendly and courteous, however this courtesy and serenity often changes once behind the wheel.
The level of driving tuition here is extremely poor particularly with drivers from the countryside. Driving licenses have been available on the black market for many years hence many drivers receive no tuition at all !. Most drivers do not understand about driving a safe distance from the vehicle in front or the distance required to stop, so you must always allow for this.
The cities and towns including Hua hin are usually quite busy, however the roads are generally wide enough and reasonably maintained.
Many roads have dual carriageways with fast moving traffic, but you will see many breaks in the road for traffic to 'U' turn, this poor road management system results in some quite dangerous situations particularly where large trucks turn in front of fast oncoming traffic.
Be very careful when approaching these 'U" turns.
Traffic lights are often controlled manually by policemen in a booth at the intersection, as a result there is little or no co ordination between one set of lights and the next, traffic is often kept waiting up to 4 minutes !
The two main sets of lights in the center of Hua hin are particularly slow to change so expect long delays in the main street.
Most locals find reversing a major challenge, so expect delays in car parks or confined places.
Given the amount of creative driving in Thailand you need to be vigilant at all times.
If you still have the courage to rent a car read on........
Most cars in Thailand have automatic transmission which A small car such as the Toyota Vios or Honda Jazz costs about 1,000 Baht per day or 1,500 Baht per day for the slightly larger Toyota Camry including insurance, both are ideal for driving in Thailand. An international licence is advised, remember to check the insurance cover provided by the rental company and do obtain advice on what to do if you are involved in an accident. See links below for car rental.
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