Anonymous
Anonymous asked in TravelUnited KingdomOther - United Kingdom · 1 month ago

why does the U.K. drive on the opposite side of the road vs. what most every other country in world drives on?

Update:

i dont think but just a few countries in the world that drive on the left side of the road. I think the few that do, are British colony countries ?  am i right? why U.K. thinks they are special and need to drive on the opposite side as everyone else in the world?

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  • RR
    Lv 7
    1 month ago
    Favorite Answer

     Here is a list of the countries that drive on the left. According to you, they are all "special":

    Oceania

        Australia

        Christmas Island

        Cocos (Keeling) Islands

        Cook Islands

        Fiji

        Kiribati

        Nauru

        New Zealand

        Niue

        Norfolk Island

        Papua New Guinea

        Pitcairn Islands

        Solomon Islands

        Samoa

        Tokelau

        Tonga

        Tuvalu

    Asia

        Bangladesh

        Bhutan

        Brunei

        East Timor

        Hong Kong

        Indonesia

        India

        Japan

        Macao

        Malaysia

        Nepal

        Pakistan

        Singapore

        Sri Lanka

        Thailand

    Africa

        Botswana

        Kenya

        Lesotho

        Malawi

        Mauritius

        Mozambique

        Namibia

        South Africa

        Swaziland

        Tanzania

        Uganda

        Zambia

        Zimbabwe

    Europe

        Akrotiri and Dhekelia

        Cyprus

        Guernsey

        Ireland

        Isle of Man

        Jersey

        Malta

        United Kingdom

    South America

        Guyana

        Suriname

    Caribbean Basin

        Anguilla

        Antigua and Barbados

        Bahamas

        Barbados

        British Virgin Islands

        Cayman Islands

        Dominica

        Grenada

        Jamaica

        Montserrat

        Saint Kitts and Nevis

        Saint Lucia

        Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

        Trinidad and Tobago

        Turks and Caicos Islands

        U.S. Virgin Islands

    Other Islands

        Bermuda

        Falkland Islands

        Maldives

        Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan de Cunha

        Seychelles

        South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands

    • RR
      Lv 7
      1 month agoReport

      Thank you!

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  • 1 month ago

    We have always driven on the left. The French revolution of 1789 decided to drive on the right. The Revolution was followed by Napoleon, who conquered Europe from Spain to Moscow, and he forced every one , in Europe, to drive on the right. It is by historical legacy that the America followed the Napoleonic example.

    With the exception of Canada, most other countries of the former British Empire still drive on the left.

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  • F
    Lv 6
    1 month ago

    In the days when you had to defend yourself while travelling, you most likely carried your sword in your right hand. Thus if you rode your horse on the left side of the road (track), it was the best to defend yourself (or attack).

    This was carried over horse and carts, stage coaches etc and eventually to cars.

    Nearly all former British Empire countries (Commonwealth) stayed with this, along with Japan (whose motor industry was largely set up by the British).

    France used aristos to the left , peasants to the right system prior to the revolution and afterwards, aristos didn't want to stand out and so everyone went with the right hand side. Napolean conquest of most of Europe, meant they mainl;y adopted right but various countries stayed with left until after WW2. Sweden was the last to change in 1967.

    USA adopted right, due to the practice of large wagons with many horses. The driver rode the left rear horse of the team to be able to use the whip more effectively. Staying on the right , gave him a better view of the road. Canada eventually adopted the US way.

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  • 1 month ago

    I think the saying is Americans drive on the right side of the road and the English drive on the correct side of the road.

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  • Clive
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Then you think wrong.  Japan was never a British colony.  It's quite a long list of countries that drive on the left, and the real question is why all the rest changed sides.  Driving on the left is the traditional side, partly because most people are right-handed and that means you're holding your weapon closer to the person going the other way.  It's safer if you get attacked.

    So why do you think you're so special for driving on the right?

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  • 1 month ago

    Over 1/3rd of the world drives on the left and not only former British Empire, 

    Japan and Thailand were never part of the British Empire,

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  • 1 month ago

    we are not alone ..and even our grannies drive better than the average american ..99% of americans cannot pass our driving test ..biggest problem ..zero lane discipline ...you pass left ..right ..ot just sit there in wrong lane ......and drive so slow our guys cutting the grass on motorways would overtake you ..on the correct side of course!...and to end ....trumps a bum ....bring back obama ..

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  • Maxi
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    In total, there are 76 countries and territories that follow left-hand traffic laws  or 34 percent of the world's population.

     In the past, almost everybody travelled on the left side of the road because that was the most sensible option for feudal, violent societies. Since most people are right-handed, swordsmen preferred to keep to the left in order to have their right arm nearer to an opponent and their scabbard further from him..........so I am assuming yu mean compared to the USA.... a new country so has zero history of that time frame

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  • Orla C
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Former British colony Ireland is another one, and Australia. Not sure about India, though from what I've seen on film of the traffic there, they're not too fussy about which side of the road to use! But would be happy to be informed about this .... 

    • ...Show all comments
    • Orla C
      Lv 7
      3 weeks agoReport

      No such country as Southern Ireland. The name of the state is either the Republic of Ireland or Ireland. 

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  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    Antigua and Barbuda. Australia, Bahamas,

    Bangladesh, Barbados, Bermuda,

    Bhutan, Bophuthatswana, Botswana,

    British Virgin Islands, Brunei, Cayman Islands,

    Channel Islands, Ciskei, Cyprus,

    Dominica, Falkland Islands, Fiji,

    Grenada, Guyana, Hong Kong,

    India, Indonesia, Ireland,

    Jamaica, Japan, Kenya,

    Lesotho, Macau, Malawi,

    Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius,

    Montserrat, Mozambique, Namibia,

    Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan,

    Papua, New Guinea, St. Vincent and Grenadines,

    Seychelles, Sikkim, Singapore,

    Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa,

    Sri Lanka, St Kitts and Nevis, St. Helena,

    St. Lucia, Surinam, Swaziland,

    Tanzania, Thailand, Tonga,

    Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, United Kingdom,

    US Virgin Islands, Venda, Zambia,

    Zimbabwe,

    all drive on the left.

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