Japanese Traffic

Posted on October 21, 2010


I refuse to drive in Japan. I have lived here for almost three years without a license. Why? Well, for one, I’m not the best driver in the first place. Add to that the traffic of Japan and the Japanese traffic laws. Disaster waiting to happen.

What made me think of Japanese traffic is a conversation I had with a native Japanese person. I mentioned that Japanese traffic is just so crazy with everyone pulling out in front of you and missing your car by one inch while trying to go around. He told me that it’s the Y plates, American military, that are the dangerous ones! He said they kill people. And are dangerous going through tunnels. Maybe it’s hard adjusting to a different driving style, but my husband works security on the base, which means he goes to all the traffic accidents during his shift and would certainly hear if someone was killed in an accident caused by an American even if he wasn’t working.  I can’t say who is more dangerous, Americans or Japanese! I just know that the way the traffic system is designed here is sometimes crazy to me.

Some of the roads here are very, very tiny. A two lane road sometimes looks smaller than a one-way. On most roads, you can stop or park on the side, but don’t forget to turn on your hazards! Where I’m from, the roads are very wide and open, and there’s hardly any pedestrians. Also, it’s very easy to get lost while driving in Japan. Instead of blocks, the neighborhood roads are jumbled.

I’m not trying to say anything negative about Japan. I absolutely love it here, even though there are things I miss about America. The road system is just another interesting part of this country. I get around fine without driving. The train system is amazing here, although it can get a bit expensive.

Posted in: Japanese Culture