Donate SIGN UP

driving in florida

Avatar Image
betterman | 11:28 Wed 23rd Jul 2008 | Travel
14 Answers
Has anyone had any experience of driving in florida, orlando to be precise, i have a hire car that i pick up at orlando airport then i have to drive to a villa i have hired all through virgin holidays.

i believe the villa to be in or around the linfields reserve area.

any advice, tips would be great, i have been before but was not old enough to drive a hire car over car there, that was 12 years ago.


1 to 14 of 14rss feed

Best Answer

No best answer has yet been selected by betterman. Once a best answer has been selected, it will be shown here.

For more on marking an answer as the "Best Answer", please visit our FAQ.
I drove from Sanford airport ( at night ) to International drive , Orlando .

I was very apprehensive , i recall before i started out , but once I started out I soon realised that my apprehension was misplaced .

There is nothing to worry about , even with a left hand drive car - you soon get used to it

As far as tips goes :-

1. Remember they drive on the right hand side

2. At intersections , you can turn right even if the traffic lights are on red PROVIDED THE WAY IS CLEAR OF TRAFFIC FROM THE LEFT .

3. The drink driving laws are very strict .

4. when you pick up the hire car - familiarise youself with the controls ( usually automatic gear box ) before you set off - an attendant is usually around if you need assistance .

See if you can get EXACT instructions of how to get to the villa.

If it is the first time you have driven in the US you will be woried enough without having the extra worry of getting lost or making wrong turnings.

I have driven quite a few times in the US and it is not a great problem. They tend to drive fairly sedatley and there a few people who drive fast or aggresively.

If you have never driven an automatic that can be strange, having no clutch peddle.
Good previousadvice on driving in the USA already given but It is always worrying for first time drivers in a strange environment with driving on the opposite side of the road to us.
My husband felt the same but was soon well into their way of driving and remember no roundabouts which make it easier.
If you are worried can I advise that they now have Sat Navs for hire at the car hire places, which could help a lot - otherwise go online and get maps printed off to show you exactly where you are going and directions.
We are off to Florida again in September and looking for USA maps for our Tom Tom so have posted a question in Travel if anyone can help. They are expensive to buy new.
Good luck and have a great time!
The excellent guide book A Brits Guide to Disney World and Florida has really useful tips for driving in the States.

There are quite a few toll booths on the way from the airport. You need to stop at each one to pay, the price ranges from something like 25 cents to $1, so not a lot of money, just be prepared to keep stopping!

Oh- and don't worry - you'll soon get the hang of it!
Yes, the tolls on the Bee Line Expressway.

Make sure you get plenty of change in coins at the airport befor you set off. Then you can just throw the money in the bucket rather than having to queue up at the booths.
Here is a few tips if you are visiting the theme parks
( particularly Disney parks ) :-

1. Get there early

2. Most people , once through the entrance ,start at the front of the parks and work their way to the back .
However it is less crowded if you start at the back and work your way to the front .

3. Some attractions/ rides etc have a system where you can take a ticket and return at a specific later time , which allows you to go straight through , without having to wait in long queues .

Are you finding the various posters advices helpful ?
Check the car before you leave the hire place. Lights, tyres, oil etc. It may look like you are worrying, but you will get the bill if anything is wrong! We had a note in a hire car that said it had been carefully checked by Bill. We found one illegal tyre, 2 lights out and oil was just on the dipstick! Got a free upgrade when we pointed all this out and this was with Avis, not a 'backstreet' place.
I've found the actual driving a doddle but it's terribly easy to get lost, especially at night, when you can go from a brightly lit built up area to a pitch-black, no landmarks freeway in the blink of an eye. Once you have the address of the villa I would use Google maps to get detailed directions to the door. Disney parks are easy to find but I've had trouble finding the entrance to both Seaworld and Universal - driving for some time within sight of the sodding place without being able to get in! Satnav would have been a boon!
get the counter staff to give you a map with the exact route marked on it - particularly the exit from the airport and route to the motorway if you'll be going on one. You may need some small change if you have to go on a toll route so ask about that too.

Easy to drive on the right of the road but coming out of driveways, service stations etc is the danger time as you may automatically head for the left hand side without thinking.
Tom Braider

Your comments about Universal brings back to mind , our first visit there .
Our hotel was on international drive - ( As you will be aware
universal is just off said drive ) - about 500/600 metres from our hotel .

Anyway on leaving universal ( getting dark ) , we were confronted at the exit ( which is not situated by the entrance ) with two signs showing numbers and letters with arrows under each sign . Not wanting to hold up the traffic behind us , we took the wrong direction - got completely lost - it was about 45 mins later , when we found our way back to our hotel ; which was only a couple of minutes from universal

Traffic lights are strung over the road or lane rather than being on posts at the road side. You get longer on the amber light before it goes onto red but there is no amber between red and green. When you get a 4 way junction with no lights, everyone stops in turn and the first to stop goes first and so on.
From Orlando Airport to Linfields takes about 25minutes and there are only four different roads, make sure you have small dollar bills and some change as there are three toll roads, I think its 2 dollars 1 dollar and the last one 50 cents,its very easy to get there when you get onto Highway 192 Linfields is on the other side of the highway so go past then do a u turn, this is common practise out there and is a good and safe way to get to the other side of the highway, Its a nice area ,ENJOY (We have just come back from Linfields).
Question Author
Thanks to everyone for their reassurance, i feel a lot better now, i am so happy with the response i got, cant wait to go now.
If you contact VIrgin they should have clear directions to give you. We went to Florida earlier this year there were 8 of us so we had to hire a mini van! It was huge and we were sh*tting ourself, infact only hubby and me would drive! It really isn't that bad though. Driving the cars is easy its following the road signs that can be difficult. Make sure you really familiarise yourself with the route when you get the directions. Have a fab time!

1 to 14 of 14rss feed

Do you know the answer?

driving in florida

Answer Question >>