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Chile – Driving

Chile is a beautiful country to explore by car. From the vibrant cities to the stunning landscapes, driving in Chile can be an adventure. However, it is important to be aware of the road safety rules and regulations to ensure a safe and enjoyable journey.

Road Safety in Chile

The quality of roads in Chile varies from good to poor, depending on the region. Major highways and main roads are generally well maintained, but secondary and rural roads can be narrow and in poor condition. It is important to be cautious when driving in these areas, especially during rainy or winter months when road conditions can be hazardous.

Local driving standards can also vary in Chile, with some drivers being more aggressive than others. It is important to remain vigilant on the road, follow the rules of the road, and drive defensively.

Required equipment

When driving in Chile, you are legally required to carry certain equipment in your car at all times. This includes:

  • A reflective warning triangle
  • A reflective vest
  • A spare tire
  • A first-aid kit

In the event of a road accident

If you are involved in a road accident in Chile, you are required by law to stop and remain at the scene until authorities arrive. You should also call the police and an ambulance if necessary.

Driving rules

In Chile, drivers must drive on the right-hand side of the road. The legal driving age is 18, and all drivers must have a valid driver’s license. It is important to obey all traffic signals and signs, including speed limits and right-of-way rules.


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Speed limits in Chile vary depending on the type of road and region. In urban areas, the speed limit is generally 50 km/h (31 mph). On rural roads, the limit is usually 100 km/h (62 mph) unless otherwise posted.

Other important driving rules in Chile include:

  • The use of seat belts is mandatory for all passengers in the car.
  • Children under the age of 12 must sit in the back seat and use an appropriate child safety seat or booster seat.
  • It is illegal to drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Road signs and traffic lights

Road signs in Chile are similar to those in many other countries and are generally easy to understand. However, some signs may be in Spanish, so it is important to familiarize yourself with the meaning of common road signs before driving.

Traffic lights in Chile follow the same pattern as in most countries, with green meaning go, yellow meaning caution, and red meaning stop.

Getting up-to-date road traffic information

To get up-to-date information on road conditions and traffic in Chile, you can visit the website of the Chilean Ministry of Public Works, which provides real-time information on road conditions, closures, and accidents. You can also check local news outlets and radio stations for traffic updates.

Parking rules and disabled parking

Parking rules in Chile can vary depending on the region and municipality. In general, parking on public roads is allowed unless otherwise indicated by signs or markings.

Some areas, such as downtown Santiago, have parking meters that require payment. There are also private parking lots available in many areas.

Disabled parking spaces are available in Chile, and drivers with disabilities can obtain a special parking permit from the Chilean government. These permits allow drivers to park in designated disabled parking spaces for free.

In conclusion, driving in Chile can be a great way to explore the country, but it is important to be aware of the rules of the road, road safety, and required equipment. By following these guidelines, you can have a safe and enjoyable driving experience in Chile.


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