So You Want To Rent A Car And Drive In DR

zoomzx11

Gold
Jan 21, 2006
7,419
104
63
Do not drive in the DR. Driving in the DR is for Dominicans. Wear the belt, drive a big car and be a passenger. I think of the big car extra gasoline cost as life insurance. Its a guarantee that you will be in a wreck. If it makes you feel any better it will most likely not be your fault.
 

tommeyers

On Vacation!
Jan 2, 2012
1,600
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36
I live in Santiago
First, i agree that driving here comes with great risks and alternatives are available to get you from any place to any other place.

Second, i have driven from my first day here. Beginning in SD! I have experienced views i would have not seen if I used others services. I have been lost too many times to count but I have found my way an equal number of times, forded streams, went with two drive wheels where those with 4 avoided.

I enjoy the adventure, the spectacular views, the people and food. My risks have been rewarded. I have never been injured and the only damage to my car has been from not yielding to pushy taxistas and route cars.

Tom
 

dv8

Gold
Sep 27, 2006
31,271
358
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I enjoy the adventure, the spectacular views, the people and food.
enjoy the FOOD? now, that, my fren, is insane talk. take it back.

driving in DR is easy: you basically go forward. parking in DR is a breeze: you stop the car, get out and voila. dominican driving myth is exaggerated.
 

tommeyers

On Vacation!
Jan 2, 2012
1,600
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36
I live in Santiago
Be careful about believing everything dv8 says especially if the consequences might be bloody. See the post last week about the Dominicans who parked where they wanted to. Yep, 2 bloody and dead bodies.

Regarding the good food: I must explain that after driving all over this country I did find 2 good sources of food. OK, maybe the cooks weren't Dominican, OK there were no good tasting plantains to be found.
 

dv8

Gold
Sep 27, 2006
31,271
358
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you could die walking on the sidewalk in sosua independence day parade. driving here is ok.
 
May 12, 2005
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I don't see the big deal about driving. Just need to be a little more aware of your surroundings and aggressive.
 

dv8

Gold
Sep 27, 2006
31,271
358
0
the key to driving here is really paying attention and using mirrors. if a retard like me can manage so can other posters. and i only learnt how to drive 5 or 6 years ago. i cannot believe that folks who learnt how to drive before the beatles recorded their first album are finding it difficult to drive in DR.
 

william webster

Platinum
Jan 16, 2009
23,890
722
113
I too have driven since my 1st day here -- started in SD... albeit a weekend, but Monday came fast and hard

if you ask me , Paris takes the cake... try the peripherique some day... or try Madrid, or Rome
Lunatics abound.

Its not that hard here, but some always make it sound more difficult than it is....

caution, caution, caution................ or go to England and switch sides.....
 

tommeyers

On Vacation!
Jan 2, 2012
1,600
0
36
I live in Santiago
I too have driven since my 1st day here -- started in SD... albeit a weekend, but Monday came fast and hard

if you ask me , Paris takes the cake... try the peripherique some day... or try Madrid, or Rome
Lunatics abound.

Its not that hard here, but some always make it sound more difficult than it is....

caution, caution, caution................ or go to England and switch sides.....
WW: you don't have to leave the island to see people driving on the other side or to be one of them!
 

josh2203

Bronze
Dec 5, 2013
765
33
48
As people are mentioning that they have even started driving in SDQ, I thought I?d mention that one of the best ever practices I learned here was how you cross an intersection (where there are no traffic lights), slowly navigating through other cars. I learned this "forced", as I was driving daily in the worst places of SDQ, and was first wondering how I ever get through any intersection. Since then it has never ever been me who blocks an intersection. Like others say, you have to know what you do, and pay attention to everything. My only accident ever was a couple of years ago when the Javilla Tours guagua on the right lane lost control and crashed to my right door. Since then I have never ever driven alongside with any large vehicle.
 

JayinRD

New member
Apr 18, 2013
396
0
0
Never drove a car here, never will. Taxis are cheap and plentiful. So much less stress without a gas guzzling tank to support. Maybe I am a pussy, but the idea of hitting a local or getting into an accident with someone here is scary.
 

Mauricio

Gold
Nov 18, 2002
5,607
7
38
Also driven from day 1, in Santo Domingo, at all hours and in all kinds of neighborhoods. I do agree the driving horror is greatly overreacted. I think Dominicans are proud of driving messy so they keep the legend alive. What's a bother is the selfishness and complete lack of anticipation (like blocking an intersection when you can know the light will change in a while), but dangerous? No.

And the good part is you can get away with the moron approach yourself as well.
 

tommeyers

On Vacation!
Jan 2, 2012
1,600
0
36
I live in Santiago
Also driven from day 1, in Santo Domingo, at all hours and in all kinds of neighborhoods. I do agree the driving horror is greatly overreacted. I think Dominicans are proud of driving messy so they keep the legend alive. What's a bother is the selfishness and complete lack of anticipation (like blocking an intersection when you can know the light will change in a while), but dangerous? No.

And the good part is you can get away with the moron approach yourself as well.
Maybe you do. But it is difficult for me. I drive respectfully and expect the same. Don't expect me to use my horn much, expect me to ignore ignorant morons without eye contact and be prepared for the consequences of your actions. Repairs are cheap for me although infrequent.
 

tommeyers

On Vacation!
Jan 2, 2012
1,600
0
36
I live in Santiago
Also driven from day 1, in Santo Domingo, at all hours and in all kinds of neighborhoods. I do agree the driving horror is greatly overreacted. I think Dominicans are proud of driving messy so they keep the legend alive. What's a bother is the selfishness and complete lack of anticipation (like blocking an intersection when you can know the light will change in a while), but dangerous? No.

And the good part is you can get away with the moron approach yourself as well.
Maybe you do. But it is difficult for me. I drive respectfully and expect the same. Don't expect me to use my horn much, expect me to ignore ignorant morons without eye contact and be prepared for the consequences of your actions. Repairs are cheap for me although infrequent.

That dominicans see their driving as something to be proud of: that is some sort of barrio legend. They have very limited self control that comes from their social, educational and economic environment. Ask a Dominican would you like me to pay you 1000 pesos today or 1500 in 3 days? Similarly, would you like to get in the long center lane of three or in the shorter but blocked right lsnr? No self control because the horizon is very close.

The driving is nothing to be proud of because it makes it impossible to exceed 46kmh without the risk of death. Where if you could be assured that a green light ment it is safe to proceed; transportation would progress faster.
 

AlterEgo

Administrator
Staff member
Jan 9, 2009
19,746
886
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Playa Najayo & South Jersey
I've been driving in DR for almost 40 years, while it's no walk in the park, it's not as awful as some make it out to be. I cut my teeth driving in Manhattan traffic, so I don't spook easily. As long as you're paying attention, ready for someone to do something stupid, you'll be fine.

And yes, I drive in Santo Domingo too.

At least I used to until the last two knee surgeries, having a right kneecap torn off will curtail your driving for awhile :)