Expat Exchange
Free MembershipSign In

Tips for Expats Driving in Orleans

Driving in a new country can be daunting. These tips offer insight into what to expect when driving in Orleans.

1. Understanding the Driving Culture

Driving in Orleans, like most parts of France, requires a good understanding of the local driving culture. French drivers are known for their aggressive driving style, so it’s important to be alert and cautious. Always adhere to the speed limits and traffic rules to avoid any mishaps.

2. Car Recommendation

Compact cars are recommended for driving in Orleans due to the narrow streets and limited parking spaces. Smaller cars are easier to maneuver and park. Also, consider choosing a car with a manual transmission as they are more common and cheaper to rent or buy in France.

3. Parking Situation

Finding parking in Orleans can be challenging, especially in the city center. However, there are several paid parking lots and garages available. Parking fees vary depending on the location and duration, but generally, it’s not overly expensive.

4. Driving with an International License

Foreigners can drive in France with an international driving permit (IDP) for up to one year. After that, you will need to obtain a French driver’s license. It’s important to note that not all countries’ licenses are exchangeable, so it’s best to check with the French authorities.

5. Obtaining a French Driver’s License

To obtain a French driver’s license, you will need to pass a written test and a practical driving test. The tests are usually conducted in French, so a good understanding of the language is necessary. You may also need to provide a translation of your current license and proof of residence. It’s recommended to take a few driving lessons to familiarize yourself with the French driving rules and style.

6. Familiarize Yourself with the Road Signs

French road signs can be quite different from those in other countries. Spend some time familiarizing yourself with these signs and what they mean. This will help you navigate the roads more confidently and safely.

7. Be Prepared for Roundabouts

Roundabouts are very common in France and can be confusing for newcomers. Remember that vehicles already in the roundabout have the right of way. Be sure to signal your exit in advance to let other drivers know your intentions.

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

Additional Information:

International Citizens Insurance

Cigna Global Health
Award winning International Health Insurance for Individuals and families living abroad.

Copyright 1997-2024 Burlingame Interactive, Inc.

Privacy Policy Legal

LoginJoinPlease Login to Continue. New? Join today (it's free).
Since 1997, we've supported millions of people as they explore the world and share the adventures and challenges of living abroad.