Driving in USA

mchadha

Well-Known Member
Hi all. I am traveling to San Francisco in June 2019 and will be there for 3 weeks. Was thinking of getting a rental car and drive to San Diego. Need inputs on how safe it would be considering it right hand drive and also is my indian licence valid? Any suggestions on which car rental company

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Desert Hunter

Super User
Hi all. I am traveling to San Francisco in June 2019 and will be there for 3 weeks. Was thinking of getting a rental car and drive to San Diego. Need inputs on how safe it would be considering it right hand drive and also is my indian licence valid? Any suggestions on which car rental company

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Was there just yesterday.
1. Indian Driving Licence is Valid
2. International Driving Permit would be additional safety.
3. Rental Car can be taken with these
4. Driving is not so difficult at other places but San Francisco !!!! Please do not think of it. Extreme slopes and compulsory STOP at each intersection. No consideration whether you are driving uphill or downhill.
5. Please read about Crooked Street / Lombard Street, San Francisco and have a look at Google Earth.
Regards.
 

mchadha

Well-Known Member
Was there just yesterday.
1. Indian Driving Licence is Valid
2. International Driving Permit would be additional safety.
3. Rental Car can be taken with these
4. Driving is not so difficult at other places but San Francisco !!!! Please do not think of it. Extreme slopes and compulsory STOP at each intersection. No consideration whether you are driving uphill or downhill.
5. Please read about Crooked Street / Lombard Street, San Francisco and have a look at Google Earth.
Regards.
Thanks sirji. I will not be doing local driving in San Francisco but from San Francisco to San Diego highway along the Pacific coast. I have never driven right hand but have extensively driven in India. I hope it would not be an issue. Also which rental car company is best for hiring a car for us with Indian licence.

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Theloststory

Well-Known Member
All car companies will give you car on Indian License. (Indian license in valid in USA unto 6 months of your landing there, I guess. Double check on this).

- I tried various companies but Alamo was quickest to respond so I booked through them.
- Book your car NOW to get lowest costs.
- Buy insurance for SURE including third party.
- Driving on right hand side: You will get used to it quickly. Be careful when taking a right or left turn because by mistake you should NOT get into the wrong lane.
- Follow traffic rules diligently.
- You must stop for a school bus with flashing lights
- Generally the right turn is free, but carefully study the signals and traffic signs before you do. Watch out for incoming traffic

This is a good guide here.
 

Desert Hunter

Super User
Thanks sirji. I will not be doing local driving in San Francisco but from San Francisco to San Diego highway along the Pacific coast. I have never driven right hand but have extensively driven in India. I hope it would not be an issue. Also which rental car company is best for hiring a car for us with Indian licence.

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I had taken from Alamo earlier. All are OK, just check on the rental + insurance. They all offer new Cars. You have to select type of Car. I got lucky as I paid for mid size car and paid for it but got Toyota Sienna (slightly better than our Innova) as the requested Car was not available.
Cars are Automatic Transmission. Only advice is .... that ... if you are driving, forget that you are doing something new. Drive with confidence. Some intersections do not have traffic signals. The rule is "First to arrive at junction goes first". If there is a "Stop" signboard, you must stop, look around and move, even if you do not see a soul anywhere.
Good Luck.
Even I am driving to Vancouver, BC, Canada from Seattle tomorrow.
 

Desert Hunter

Super User
Turning left against oncoming traffic, wait patiently till oncoming traffic allows you - they have the priority. Pedestrians are the King of road. Always give them the way. No one is going to hoot at you for stopping for above reasons.
 

mchadha

Well-Known Member
Got my visa issues sorted. Planning to do SFO to San Diego by road, taking a night break at santa Barbara. Any suggestions on things to do and route. Attaching my rough draft route


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