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Tips for Expats Driving in Guayaquil

Driving in a new country can be daunting. These tips offer insight into what to expect when driving in Guayaquil.
|-Tips for Expats Driving in Guayaquil

1. Understanding the Driving Culture

Driving in Guayaquil, like many Latin American cities, can be a bit chaotic for those not used to it. Traffic rules are often not strictly adhered to and drivers can be aggressive. It’s important to be alert and cautious at all times. Also, be prepared for heavy traffic during peak hours.

2. Car Recommendation

It’s recommended to have a car that’s comfortable and reliable. A compact car is often a good choice as it’s easier to navigate through the city’s narrow streets and find parking. However, if you plan to explore the country’s diverse terrains, an SUV might be a better option.

3. Parking Situation

Finding parking in Guayaquil can be challenging, especially in the city center during peak hours. However, there are numerous paid parking lots and garages available. The cost of parking is relatively affordable compared to many other countries.

4. Driving with an International License

Foreigners can drive in Ecuador with an international driving permit for up to 90 days. After that, you will need to obtain a local driver’s license.

5. Obtaining a Local Driver’s License

To get a local driver’s license in Ecuador, you will need to pass a written test and a practical driving test. The process also involves submitting various documents, including your passport, proof of address, and a medical certificate. It’s recommended to contact the local transport authority for the most accurate and up-to-date information.

6. Safety Precautions

Always keep your doors locked and windows up, especially when driving at night or in less crowded areas. Be aware of your surroundings and avoid leaving valuables in plain sight in your car. It’s also recommended to have a GPS or a reliable navigation app to help you find your way around the city.

7. Road Conditions

While major roads and highways in Guayaquil are generally in good condition, some side streets can be poorly maintained. Be prepared for occasional potholes and speed bumps. Also, be aware that road signs and markings may not always be clear or consistent.

Joshua WoodJoshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

Additional Information:

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