If you drive in Switzerland...

Sep 27th, 2010, 12:00 PM
  #21  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
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In his/her wonderful compilation of Swiss motoring rules and fines Dolly did not mention what i thought were a law - turning off your motor at train crossings until the train passes and even at redlights where i have been honked at for not doing.

Dolly or anyone know if that is a law or a custom?

thanks
PalenQ is online now  
Sep 27th, 2010, 12:09 PM
  #22  
 
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That I believe is custom, just as it is here in the Netherlands. We also turn off the engine for bridges of course.

Our fines are all going up by 20% next year.
hetismij is offline  
Sep 27th, 2010, 01:21 PM
  #23  
 
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We've just heard recently that you are in danger of being ticketed if you are doing as little as 5 mph over the speed limit here in California. Something about making more revenue for the state. Yikes, they'll make a million by year's end if it's true. No one drives the speed limit here.

I'm sort of glad this post wasn't up prior to our trip last year to Switzerland. It would have made me paranoid to say the least. Luckily we scooted on through with no tickets.
michele_d is offline  
Sep 27th, 2010, 01:46 PM
  #24  
 
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>turning off your motor at train crossings
§30 StVO, 10€ fine for not doing so.
logos999 is offline  
Sep 28th, 2010, 08:04 AM
  #25  
 
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logos999 - are you talking about Germany where i have encountered the same phenomena (to americans) or Switzerland about not turning off your motor at train crossings.

Danke
PalenQ is online now  
Sep 28th, 2010, 08:16 AM
  #26  
 
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Of course. Who cares about a 10€ fine anyway, but it's the law. Just smile at the guy on his bicycle that complains and don't turn off your motor.
logos999 is offline  
Sep 28th, 2010, 09:15 AM
  #27  
 
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With fines that stiff for minor infractions such as lane change "The fine was 850 CHF (600 CHF for the infraction, 250 CHF for the admin fee)" I probably makes sense to buy Swiss rail passes (http://travel.sbb.ch/swissrailpass) for worry free travel. 8 day pass is CHF 752.00 for 2 people. I think here in Canada similar fine would be in the $100 ballpark.
hkto is offline  
Sep 28th, 2010, 05:05 PM
  #28  
 
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Rules in the US vary widely, as do the way they are enforced. Very few places have cameras or any sort of technology that gives an accurate reading.

Unless there is a speed trap (local town with hidden cops as a means of raising revenue) cops generally are not interested in speed ing unless egregious (20/25 or more miles above the limit) or dangerous driving (very tight tailgaiting or rapid cutting in and out). Cops, frankly, have too much else to do to enforce speeding limits inmost places.

Agree that drivers in europe are, in general, much better than in the US - since people that drive like many US drivers do (tailgatiing - esp by huge SUVs - drives me MAD) would have long since lost their licenses.

And yes, I do speed here - since posted limits are laughably low. (Major highways in NYC have a limit of 50 mph - traffic in the left lane typically moves at 65 to 70 when there is enough room. In the suburbs limits range from 55 to 65 and fast traffic - the whole left lane - does 75 to 80 - and police have no interest. They will stop you for 90 or more - or very rapid cutting in and out in heavy traffic. Or if your erratic driving seems to indicate that you are DUI.))
nytraveler is offline  
Sep 29th, 2010, 07:42 AM
  #29  
 
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Agree that drivers in europe are, in general, much better than in the US - since people that drive like many US drivers do>

IME that would not nearly be true - even with current crackdowns. At least not in France nor Italy - in France drivers are much more aggressive say in towns and tailgaiting is the rule IME in towns. I always admire how polite American drivers are when i return. So different perceptions but maybe stem from what parts of America we both are driving in - I think the East Coast may be more like France in driving habits but in the Mid-West we are more like genteel Brits in driving habits.
PalenQ is online now  
Sep 29th, 2010, 08:50 AM
  #30  
 
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In France a driver must be smart enough to operate a clutch. Set this as a standard for drivers in the US and the roads over there would be empty.
logos999 is offline  
Sep 29th, 2010, 09:18 AM
  #31  
 
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Geeez logos999, why don't you really tell us what you think of the US. But wait, we just might be too stupid to understand it.
michele_d is offline  
Sep 29th, 2010, 09:42 AM
  #32  
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
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Thank you! we will be driving through Switzerland - slowly - in December and these are all good facts for us to know. But how do we get a vignette to drive the autobahn?
jujubean is offline  
Sep 29th, 2010, 10:37 AM
  #33  
 
Join Date: May 2007
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If you rent in Switzerland, your car will have a vignette.
If you rent elsewhere, check if the car by chance already has one. Otherwise buy it at gas stations/ rest areas near the border or at the border/checkpoint.
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Oct 4th, 2010, 01:39 PM
  #34  
 
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Huge difference between US and Switzerland (or most place on this planet) is that the speed limits makes sense. 120km/h (75MPH) on most of the expressway with reduction through tunnels or construction zones are totally appropriate for the amount of traffic and road condition in that country. Most people there drive speed limit (or slightly below) and traffic flows perfectly.

That is so different from the many states in the US where the speed limit is set so low it is basically a mockery.
rkkwan is offline  

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