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Driving and Public Transport

Bahrain - Driving and Public Transport


Getting around in Bahrain is fairly easy. It is not necessary to own a car as public transport is reasonably good and there are a number of car hire firms if you prefer to drive yourself.

A driving licence is required to operate a car in Bahrain. Driving on your home licence is only allowed for a short period of time when you arrive in the country and it is recommended that you obtain the International driving licence before you arrive. This is valid for one year and is recognised world wide.

You have to drive on the right hand side of the road in Bahrain and it is compulsory to wear a seatbelt if in the front of the car. Young children can only sit in the back of the car. All road signs are in both Arabic and English and speed limits vary. The maximum on a city road is 80kph and 100kph on highways. Speeding offenders are easily caught due to the number of cameras on the roads and penalties include fines. Drinking and driving can lead to a prison sentence.

If you are involved in an accident it is important to report it to the traffic police so that a report can be filed. The number to dial is 1768 8888 though if the accident is serious and emergency services are required then you should dial 999. If no-one is injured the car can be moved but if people have been hurt then it is important to wait until the accident report has been filed before moving the vehicle. Moving the car can invalidate the insurance. It is against the law to use a mobile phone while driving a car.

It is important not to drive without car insurance. This can be arranged through one of the many insurance brokers which can be found in the country or through the dealer when you purchase the car, though it is a good idea to shop around as your first quote is not always the best one.

Public transport is relatively inexpensive and many people choose to use it for getting to and from work, although there are not many buses on the roads so this can be the time consuming option. Taxis can work out to be more expensive than buses, and if you decide to use a taxi for a long journey then it is advisable to haggle and agree on a price before you set off.


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