Driving in Orlando Florida tips, tricks & the law

Okay so your not going to get to drive that type of car in the picture! If you go on a Florida vacation, chances are your going to need to rent a car or van. Actually if you plan it right and just do the major theme parks you don’t need to rent a car at all. But if you want to really see the different things in Florida, and I recommend that you do, then you need a car.

Orlando Florida is a very vast, spread out area with everything located miles away from each other. Surprisingly you can get to where you want to go very fast because everything is connected by highways and toll roads. Almost all roads have two to three lanes each way. I’m not going to get into every detail of Orlando driving here, just the basic laws you want to know.

But first, just how do people drive in Orlando? Well, it depends on if your in a tourist area or a local area! Driving around Disney and the other parks you will be surrounded by other tourist who don’t know where the hell they are going! People do strange things when they are frustrated and lost. I’ve seen cars stopped dead in the middle of a highway reading a map!

I’ve seen people drive over medians, swerve from one lane all the way over to 3 lanes over without looking. I’ve seen lots drive through red lights when the “left turn only green light” comes on! So what I’m saying is, drive defensively. Always assume the car to your right or left might suddenly pull into your lane just ahead of you.

You have many people from the UK on an Orlando vacation. They drive on the left hand side over there, so imagine how confused they must be! Always try to know a few miles before if you need to take a left or right ahead, and get in that lane, not the last minute. If your going straight through an intersection and your at the red light, remember something.

Almost all intersections have a left green light, then the regular green light to go through. So don’t jump on the gas when you see that left only green light or you’ll get smacked for sure. Just keep your cool, plan ahead and if you really get lost, pull into the next gas station, don’t slow way down or even stop in the road!

Local Floridians do drive fast, I admit that. I’m always the slowest guy on the road, always have someone kissing my bumper. I always stay on the right lane side of the road, only going on the left lane when I know I have to make a left turn. So try to keep up with everyone else, and stay in the right hand lane.

Now for some basic Florida driving laws. Florida does have a seat belt law. You are required to wear a seat belt while in a vehicle. Children 3 or under must be in a child safety seat. Children 5 and under must wear an approved and properly used child restraint device. Ironically you don’t need a helmet to ride a motorcycle however!

You must turn on your headlights and windshield wipers in the rain. Florida gets sudden downpours that last for a few minutes, then disappears. It can pour very hard for a short time, making your vision only good for a few feet in front of you. If you suddenly find yourself in a downpour, DO NOT slam on your brakes!!

Always remember the cars behind you. Let off the gas, turn the wipers on high and slowly start to slow down, after turning on your lights. Some will stop almost dead in the road, so keep watch for stopped traffic in the rain. Just get your speed down without the guy behind you doing a dukes of hazards fly over your car!

You cannot have any open alcoholic beverages in your car while driving, duh. Right as I write this they have no cell phone talking restrictions. But do try to not talk on the phone while driving, you’ll be confused enough as it is. Well, that’s a very brief intro to Orlando Florida driving. Your going to be one of many tourist driving a car you don’t know much about on roads you know nothing about.

So drive with the traffic, always look ahead for what’s coming up, drive defensively and keep a nice space between you and the car ahead. That way you can avoid ramming someone as well as giving the guy behind you time to stop before hitting you. And if you see a white and green Mark III van, wave and say hi to me!