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Traffic In Italy

Discussion in 'General Discussion About Italy' started by Peninha, Nov 27, 2014.

  1. I've heard a couple of times the expression that in Italy there is a civil war going on in the roads, but I find this hard to believe. Is it that bad? Also, I've heard that the drivers don't respect crosswalks?
  2. There is indeed much controversy regarding traffic in Italy :p

    Before I came here and got used to driving on my own, I have heard that having your car 'wrecked' is totally normal! My friends (who have already been to Italy one year before me) were telling me how it's totally normal to bump cars in intersections, everyone's very used to it, etc., etc.

    Well, now I have my own car and I do my own driving and I have to say, I would be crazy mad if someone were to hit me in an intersection! The cost of repairing your car is way too expensive so, IMO, it's not normal to drive around with your car wrecked, people just don't have the money to repair them!

    On to the next issue, I think it depends on the region, on the driver.. because around here, everyone kinda respects them!
    I have never had problems crossing the road, except for the occasional jerk, but that's totally normal!

    Actually, if I think about it, it's the other way around!
    It's the pedestrians who don't respect the crosswalks! Most Italians will cross the road wherever they feel like it, like sheep!

    Like this:


    I'm very sorry if I offend anyone, but this is totally annoying for a driver because, you drive around, in your car, at legal speed (even slower, because of all the crosswalks, traffic lights and so on) and, in the middle of the road, you see a pedestrian just standing there, because he or she has already crossed half of the road, there are cars coming from both directions and if you don't allow them to cross the other half of the street, the other car will have to, otherwise that person will have to just sit there, in the middle of the road!

    I'm not really mad about it, I got used to people doing it, I just find it so annoying because the crosswalk is like.. 3 meters away! :D LOL
    Peninha likes this.
  3. So the fact is that people don't use the crosswalks? That is annoying I agree, they should use them or else they can cause an accident. So after all, is there a civil war or not? :)
  4. If you think traffic is bad in Italy, go to an under-developed Asian country. You'll be glad that you are in Italy after that :p.

    To be fair, it is quite scary in Italy if you are used to calm traffic. It was quite terrifying for my friends who weren't used to this!
  5. I think it's pretty common for people to cross the street wherever they want, and it's just not common in Italy. If you look at China, the number of crosswalks, pedestrian bridges, and tunnels are dismally little. There's also the matter of culture and personality, and I feel like Italians are a headstrong type of people, hence why this might be happening.
  6. LOL, I don't want to compare Italy to an African country, please, there are many many differences. I would expect that the traffic could be more civilized though because that is the image that I have from Italian people overall.
  7. I think it's just a matter that Italians are often very verbal when it comes to traffic. I have an Italian uncle who is the kindest and most gentle soul imaginable, but as soon as we sit in his car, he turns into a devil, screaming and shouting out of the window at other car drivers. And not just that, he also constantly beeps his horn at every occasion. It's quite embarrassing at times. Road rage is something I don't quite understand. Perhaps someone will be able to explain it to me one day.
  8. I would agree with you on that one. I've been to Italy a number of times but it's nothing like what you'll experience in India, Vietnam or Cambodia for example. From personal experience in all those places, they are not places to be driving. Or to be crossing the road for that matter!
  9. Traffic in Milan is moderate for the most part. In the morning around 8 and 10 it picks up as well as in the evening around 5 and 7. In Venice, there is very minimal traffic as the main way of transportation is by boat. Rome on the other hand, could be very busy throughout the day as it is a high tourist area. The traffic in Italy varies depending on the city.
  10. As Rosie said, it depends on the region! I've yet to get bumped at an intersection though :D
    Many do drive like lunatics, but most are the good kind - the kind that mostly know what they're doing and actually make the traffic flow faster.

    One issue is with pedestrians going wild, as said many times above, the other issue is that we are, how do I put it... easily offended when we are behind the wheel. How dare you overtake me on this two-lanes-road where it's perfectly fine to do so? I'm ging to block the hell out of you when this jerk in front of me is finally going to get out of the way so that I can get stuck in the traffic just ahead!

    My GF is the kindest soul I know, but I'm way too scared to be in the same car she's driving.
  11. Most Italian drivers are much more aggressive than American ones.People who say Italians do not know how to drive are measuring them by the wrong yardstick. They have a very controlled abandon to their driving. I will comment on statements that are common among those Americans who think Italians are crazy drivers:
    1) 'I wish they would not get so close.' Italians drivers are much more comfortable driving much closer than is typical in America. 'An inch is as good as a mile' is easily translated into 'A centimeter is as good as a kilometer,' and they think nothing of getting that close. If you know to expect this and do not panic, you will be fine.

    2) 'They keep cutting me off.' When driving in Italy, your responsibility is to those in front of you and those to your side. They rarely use their rear-view mirror. If there is an opening in front of you, it is your obligation to fill it, or someone will fill it for you. (See rule 1 for how little distance in front of you is necessary for this to happen.) You learned in driver's ed. that you should have one car length for every 10 m.p.h.. This will never happen in Italy except on the most deserted roads.
  12. I think driving in a major city in italy is probably about as bad as many other cities in and around Europe. You'll always come across idiots, busy rush hour periods and suicidal pedestrians. I've only ever driven in Italy twice, both in Rome and while its not an experiences I enjoyed, its not something that put me off driving for life...
  13. There are big differences between big cities. A city in India or in Moscow has to be way more hectic than in any city in Europe and in Italy, I find strange that in Italy they don't respect pedestrians.
  14. Yes, bumping other cars in Italy is totally normal. I was in the southern regions and my person driving the car I was in rear ended the car in front of us. He didn't even get out of the car and both cars drove away like nothing happened! I was shocked. It obviously depends on the area and type of car but if you look at a lot of cars on the street they are banged up. They view cars more as a way to get a around then something of value we do here in the US. It's very interesting.

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