U.S. vs. FRANCE driving rules

Old Jun 3rd, 1999, 12:27 PM
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U.S. vs. FRANCE driving rules

I know in France they drive on same side as in USA but heard something about right side respect or preference. What does this entail? Doubt there is our wonderful, "right turn on red after stop" in France. Do France have any such law to go on a red? Need any French tips for driving. Will drive in Burgundy, Loire, Normandy and into Paris to drop car off, if driving makes a difference in any of these areas. MERCI!!
Old Jun 3rd, 1999, 01:21 PM
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As I understand it, when two drivers are approaching an intersection on equally important cross-streets (i.e., at 90 degrees to each other) the car on the right has the "right of way." This is also the rule in Belgium, where I found it a little hard to get used to. The main problems for me occured when I was the car on the right, but hesitated more than the driver behind me thought I should. Just be cautious till you get a "feel" for it. I have not encountered a "right on red after stop" anywhere in Europe.
Old Jun 3rd, 1999, 01:29 PM
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A website that might help you out: www.ideamerge.com/motoeuropa

This site has tons of useful info about driving in Europe. If you check under Chapters --> France you will find some specific informati
Old Jun 3rd, 1999, 01:35 PM
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Briana, I'm no authority, but 'right side respect' probably means slow traffic stay right. Are you sure you want to drive into Paris, my choice would be to drop off at the airport. No special tips on driving in France except be ready to pay high tolls. I don't think France has a "right turn on red", unlike Italy where you can turn anywhere, anytime or create a new lane if it suits your needs.
Old Jun 3rd, 1999, 02:18 PM
Neal Sanders
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You'll see yellow signs that say, "CEDEZ PASSAGE A'DROIT." That means yield to the car on the right, which is the principal difference between French and US driving rules. It comes into special play at roundabouts where the traffic already in the rotary yields to those entering the stream. Happy motoring!
Old Jun 3rd, 1999, 02:49 PM
Cheryl Z.
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Briana, "slow" is anything under l00 mph or so! Seriously! It does take some getting used to, just excercise some caution (and get used to the car in back of you being right on your bumper!)
Old Jun 4th, 1999, 04:46 AM
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The rule is: no signs, no lines>>priority to the right! That means that even if you are on a big, fat main road and someone is entering from a tiny, piddly country road, if that road is coming *from the right* than that driver has the right of way (unless s/he has a stop sign or line). You won't be able to see whether there's a stop sign or line, so should "cover" the break as you approach intersections (unless your road has a "priority road" sign). Be careful about this right of way rule because it has been the undoing of many an American! Right on red is non-existant unless there's blinking arrow. Bonne
Old Jun 4th, 1999, 10:27 AM
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Our experience in a rental car in Paris before going out to Loire was that anything coming at you (motorcycle, cars, etc.) has "right of way" and you YIELD. It is somewhat difficult in the city but you get used to it right away in the city traffic. Once you get out onto the highway, particularly away from the "loop" that surrounds Paris, driving is easy. The roads down to the Loire are quite well maintained and politeness is observed on the highway. No one will "flip you off". The police ride BMW motorcycles and you must observe the speed limits. Get used to kilometers VS MPH. The signs are well marked and color coded: The chateaus and municipal centers are noted along the highways. The roads are clean. One tip I can give you is that when traveling through tiny streets going through small villages, if you want to know if you will fit through the alley and not scratch that rental car is ALWAYS FOLLOW A RANGE ROVER! They are so wide that all cars following them slip down the street easily! Have a great time!
Old Jun 4th, 1999, 08:44 PM
Dan Meyers
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When two cars approach an intersection at the same time, the car on the right has the right of way. It was even mentioned in a French textbook of mine that the french don't even bother looking to their left before entering an intersection. However, don't be afraid to rent and drive a car in France as I would recommend it as the best way to see the cities and countryside at your leisure. The french may have a slightly different concept of driving, but it's not hard to adapt to, and can only add to your "adventure"!

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