top of page
  • pabbott

Driving on the Wrong Side of the Road




Škoda Citigo, Our Rental Car


What is a Škoda Citigo? It is a Czech car, very small, and perfect for driving on the wrong side of the road on very narrow roads and dodging tour buses and historic stone walls that line all the rural roadways. We picked up our little car at Dublin airport on day three of the trip and drove across Ireland to the west coast. The first couple of days of driving were anxiety provoking but things improved as time went by. Thankfully, we decided to splurge on the automatic transmission which removed one layer of tension to deal with.


Roads in Ireland are classified with a letter system. The "M" roads (Motorways) are the best followed by the "N" roads (National Primary and National Secondary). These are the roads you hope to have for driving long distances. The "M" roads are akin to interstate highways, although almost never more than two lanes each way. But for most of the daily trips, we were on "R" or regional roads which vary widely in terms of width, shoulders, quality of pavement, etc. These can be barely one lane wide, often have no center line (as there is no room to draw a line), and there are no shoulders.


The speed limits are for the most part very optimistic. "M" roads have a speed limit of 120 kmh which is possible on those roads. But the 80 kmh for the tiny "R" roads seems nearly impossible, although nearly all the local drivers seem to manage that.



An example of a good road in Ireland



Škoda Citigo, Our Rental Car

What is a Škoda Citigo? It is a Czech car, very small, and perfect for driving on the wrong side of the road on very narrow roads and dodging tour buses and historic stone walls that line all the rural roadways. We picked up our little car at Dublin airport on day three of the trip and drove across Ireland to the west coast. The first couple of days of driving were anxiety provoking but things improved as time went by. Thankfully, we decided to splurge on the automatic transmission which removed one layer of tension of deal with.


Roads in Ireland are classified with a letter system. The "M" roads (Motorways) are the best followed by the "N" roads (National Primary and National Secondary). These are the roads you hope to have for driving long distances. The "M" roads are akin to interstate highways, although almost never more than two lanes each way. But for most of the daily trips, we were on "R" or regional roads which vary widely in terms of width, shoulders, quality of pavement, etc. These can be barely one lane wide, often have no center line (as there is no room to draw a line), and there are no shoulders.


The speed limits are for the most part very optimistic. "M" roads have a speed limit of 120 kmh which is possible on those roads. But the 80 kmh for the tiny "R" roads seems nearly impossible, although nearly all the local drivers seem to manage that.


An example of a good road in Ireland

What is the hardest part about driving on the wrong side of the road? Perhaps figuring out which way to look to see if cars are coming. We rode all the way across Ireland and back and no one died. So, it is all good.

4 views

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page