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Having worked as a taxi driver in Niagara Falls (at two different times in my life) and survived the tourists, driven in other wonderful no-holds-barred driving like Singapore and Hong Kong (usually during rush hour) and being qualified several times for the wonderful RCMP evasive driving course (I don't think the winter Ice and Snow version I used to teach will do me much good), I don't think I will have much issue with Philippine driving.  Can't be any worse than getting out of my local dirt-track Speedway parking lot at the end of the races, can it?

 

:mocking:

 

Bob, I have been in Singapore and Hong Kong (I have not driven myself) and National Hwy in the Cabuyao / Calamba makes those look fairly tame, IMHO. 

 

Driving on sidewalks / shoulders, driving down the wrong side of the road (in both lanes of the 4 lane hwy), making a u turn ANYWHERE at ANYTIME, driving without lights, following any vehicle into a left turn like a train so that oncoming vehicles will have to stop, belching smoke, etc.

 

All of this is not allowed in the Freeport, and it is not very common in Olongapo.   :)

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You sir are a brave man to drive in the Philippines. It's best for me to hire a car with driver. Also, less stressful.   I have driven in different parts of the world, including a left hand drive RV

I now consider myself an experienced Philippines driver as I have now driven outside of the Subic Bay Freeport Zone and into Olongapo City, twice!   :hystery:   Actually, driving in Olongapo is fair

I'm sorry OMW, but you need to perform one more driving skill for you to claim you're experienced. Those switchback turns near the city cemetery on your way towards Subic City -- you need to pass an

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I think I'm qualified to join the ranks of crazy/stupid/brave/foolish (take your pick) people who were actually taught the correct way to drive,did exhaustive tests to prove they could, and then thought they could drive in Cebu. I started driving on a motorbike some 10 years ago in Cebu and did 2 years of city -********(i'm struggling to find a suitable word other than 'driving')- perhaps, survivalistic utter disregard for the safety of others, their rights not to risk death every minute they've the temerity to be on MY road, and I'm bloody well going to do what I want and the Hell with you- would start to approach the common Filipino driving approach? Since then I have spent 4 years, driving a car 4 times a day the 15 km between Yati, Liloan, and my son's school in Banilad. Am I really qualified?? To answer this question you must be able to put a 'tick' beside every one of the following prerequisites which are in my experience ESSENTIAL if you want to survive on the Cebu Highway (sorry I should have said 'Cebu Suicide Track.)

  • as suggested above you MUST FORGET EVERYTHING you were foolish enough to think was training for the correct way to drive safely, with due regard to the safety of others.
  • ALWAYS REMEMBER that YOU are the only person who is important, and has any right to drive on the 'racetrack'- sorry!- road.
  • NEVER, NEVER, NEVER GIVE WAY to anything else on the road be it a man, woman, child, vehicle, animal, pothole, road sign or any other animal, vegetable or mineral object which DARES to be in your way.
  • ALWAYS drive as fast as you can, by any route that your vehicle can fit through, to ensure that you are right in the middle of any obstruction causing a backlog of traffic. This is the only way you can ensure that the road jam becomes worse, and if you're very lucky you can be proud that you've helped to cause that holy word 'GRIDLOCK.'
  • if you're unfortunate enough to encounter one of those horrible, self righteous FOREIGNERS in front of you it is your DUTY as a good FILIPINO to do everything, up to and including murder, to drive them into the gutter and off the road. You MUST,MUST pass them at all costs with complete disregard for the safety of yourself, your family passengers, the Foreigner and all other people ON or NEAR the roadside. If you don't get past them you are a disgrace to your race and nation and should grab the nearest weapon and go out and kill 10 other people so as to appease your conscience.
  • a road should be considered to be any gap, passage or space through which it MIGHT be possible to drive your vehicle, disregarding damage to people or property.
  • double lines on a road mean that the road painter was drunk and innumerate and lost count of the strokes of his paintbrush. Because of this you should assume that it is not just safe, but essential that you cross them. Don't be a 'wimp' like those foreigners.
  • if you see a road sign, any road sign, completely ignore what it or the picture says but award yourself maximum points for finding one of the two or three signs which actually reached the stage where the purchasing officials carelessly lost track of how much of the budget they had stolen. Assume that some idiot or drunk made a mistake and REALLY PAID MONEY to buy them. They are worthless anyway as nobody knows what they mean.- or wants to know.
  • when you see a truck or bus hurtling straight at you on your side of the road be reasonable and remind yourself that there is no correct side of the road to drive on. Close your eyes and pray- God will save you I'm sure.
  • if you see a vehicle flashing an indicator pay no attention to it and immediately pass the vehicle on that side- he has clearly done one of the following; A. just discovered the indicator lever and wonders what it does.  B. has no idea which is his right and left hand  C  has been hypnotised by the pretty flashing amber light.
  • if an oncoming driver flashes his headlamps at you assume that he is warning you to get out of his way. Do not proceed or face the consequences.
  • if driving at night BEWARE of tricycles and motorcycles which display lights. Obviously the driver is drunk and has forgotten to turn them off to save fuel.
  • when approaching a traffic light turn round and drive home fast. You are obviously dehydrated or delirious and have seen a MIRAGE. Everyone in Cebu knows that the remaining budget only allows for one set of christmas tree bulbs per year to be put into the only two sets of working traffic lights in Cebu. The odds in favour of you seeing a working traffic light in the city have been calculated to be 100,000 to one.

REMEMBER- Pedestrian Crossings are NOT places where pedestrians can cross the road safely. This is a common misunderstanding. They are there so that you can focus your vehicle more accurately on the fools who step out onto them. NEVER, NEVER stop for someone on a crossing. You will lose all the points you have gained by assiduously hitting pedestrians in the past .Foreigners count 20 points, women and children 10 points, pregnant women 15 points, nuns  minus 10 points and policemen mean a 1000 peso bribe to his surviving family.

 

   I think that's enough rules for now. Has anybody else got any DO's and DON'Ts for Cebu driving? I'm sure I've missed out lots. Chris McG.

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There is an old joke about how you can tell a person's nationality when they visit an auto showroom. The Germans check the engine; the British examine the interior upholstery; Americans kick the tires; and the Italians toot the horn. The Filipinos belong to the "toot the horn" category. It's the most important thing in a car after the accelerator. 

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you need to pass another vehicle on a blind curve.

 

Passing on a blind curve in my 90 hp Avanza will be extra exciting!

Be sure to shut the a/c off first. It will help if you have a Ceres bus right behind you as the oncoming traffic will fear the bus knowing that it will not give way.

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Having worked as a taxi driver in Niagara Falls (at two different times in my life) and survived the tourists, driven in other wonderful no-holds-barred driving like Singapore and Hong Kong (usually during rush hour) and being qualified several times for the wonderful RCMP evasive driving course (I don't think the winter Ice and Snow version I used to teach will do me much good), I don't think I will have much issue with Philippine driving.  Can't be any worse than getting out of my local dirt-track Speedway parking lot at the end of the races, can it?

 

:mocking:

 

Well, just wait and see!  The only thing close to what I experienced in Mactan/Mandaue/Cebu City was Naples, Italy.  And that was a quite a few notches down on the crazy driving scale.  Bohol seemed more tame than Cebu, but still a bit crazy.  Nothing I've seen in North America (and I've traveled quite widely here) or South Korea comes anywhere close to the Philippines for sheer excitement in a simple car, cab, jeepney, or tricycle trip.  It's an E-ticket ride but it sure is cheap!

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Having worked as a taxi driver in Niagara Falls (at two different times in my life) and survived the tourists, driven in other wonderful no-holds-barred driving like Singapore and Hong Kong (usually during rush hour) and being qualified several times for the wonderful RCMP evasive driving course (I don't think the winter Ice and Snow version I used to teach will do me much good), I don't think I will have much issue with Philippine driving.  Can't be any worse than getting out of my local dirt-track Speedway parking lot at the end of the races, can it?

 

:mocking:

 

Well, just wait and see!  The only thing close to what I experienced in Mactan/Mandaue/Cebu City was Naples, Italy.  And that was a quite a few notches down on the crazy driving scale.  Bohol seemed more tame than Cebu, but still a bit crazy.  Nothing I've seen in North America (and I've traveled quite widely here) or South Korea comes anywhere close to the Philippines for sheer excitement in a simple car, cab, jeepney, or tricycle trip.  It's an E-ticket ride but it sure is cheap!

For me it's a toss up between Naples and Pusan, Korea.  But I believe traffic in Manila is pure

road anarchy.  You just make up your own rules and full speed ahead.....he, he. 

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I will drive when i get to Cebu.After reading some of the posts here and previous posts on this forum i will be asking our american members to keep an eye out for a good used main battle tank to do my daily driving.i dont care about the gas consumption i just want other drivers to keep there distance,and i think a tank would be the perfect vehical for this purpose.cheers

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I will drive when i get to Cebu.After reading some of the posts here and previous posts on this forum i will be asking our american members to keep an eye out for a good used main battle tank to do my daily driving.i dont care about the gas consumption i just want other drivers to keep there distance,and i think a tank would be the perfect vehical for this purpose.cheers

Hey Lyno,

 

I got all excited when I saw this Australian fighting vehicle made by Thales Australia:

 

post-686-0-15664600-1365344374_thumb.jpg

 

It will also have the meanest and loudest truck air horn to blast any tricycle driver to

move his ass immediately.  Don't worry, I will properly bless the left front tire for ya, OK?

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Yesterday we drove from Olongapo City to San Fernando on the Jose Abad Santos Avenue (JASA) road and it was a nice country drive.  Not much real traffic except in a couple of towns, but not bad at all.  The only artificial traffic was due to road work on about 4 or 5 bridges.  After those are finished the entire road will be in very good condition.

 

After visiting the Robinson's mall in San Fernando, we went north on MacArthur Blvd to Angeles City and visited the Marquee Mall there, which is a very nice mall.

 

After Angeles, we went home on the SCTEX expressway, which cost p190, I think.  I got the Avanza up to 110 kph and the speed sensation was almost the same as when I got my vette up to 305 kph in Germany!   :hystery:

 

After reading some of the stories above, I'm feeling a bit guilty because the driving was nice and I didn't encounter much craziness at all.  JASA is 4 lanes in most places and most of it is in good condition   San Fernando has fairly good roads and several flyovers at major intersections which helps keep the traffic going.  MacArthur Blvd is wide with many businesses, but there is a lot of room on the shoulders in most places.  SCTEX (and NLEX to Manila) are very nice roads but of course you pay the toll for that.

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Yesterday we drove from Olongapo City to San Fernando on the Jose Abad Santos Avenue (JASA) road and it was a nice country drive.  Not much real traffic except in a couple of towns, but not bad at all.  The only artificial traffic was due to road work on about 4 or 5 bridges.  After those are finished the entire road will be in very good condition.

 

After visiting the Robinson's mall in San Fernando, we went north on MacArthur Blvd to Angeles City and visited the Marquee Mall there, which is a very nice mall.

 

After Angeles, we went home on the SCTEX expressway, which cost p190, I think.  I got the Avanza up to 110 kph and the speed sensation was almost the same as when I got my vette up to 305 kph in Germany!   :hystery:

 

After reading some of the stories above, I'm feeling a bit guilty because the driving was nice and I didn't encounter much craziness at all.  JASA is 4 lanes in most places and most of it is in good condition   San Fernando has fairly good roads and several flyovers at major intersections which helps keep the traffic going.  MacArthur Blvd is wide with many businesses, but there is a lot of room on the shoulders in most places.  SCTEX (and NLEX to Manila) are very nice roads but of course you pay the toll for that.

Dang OMW, I didn't know your corvette has warp drive (305 kph or 189 mph)!  Sounds like your Avanza

loves to cruise along that JAZA and SCTEX super highway.  I love road trips and stopping at all the fruit

and beer pit stops.....he, he.

 

Excellent field report!  Thank you sir -- Jake

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