Tips for Expats Driving in Bergen

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

1. Understanding the Driving Conditions

Driving in Bergen can be a unique experience due to the city’s hilly terrain and narrow streets. The weather can also be unpredictable, with frequent rain and snow in the winter. Therefore, it’s important to be prepared for these conditions and drive cautiously. The roads are generally well-maintained and the signage is clear, but it’s still important to familiarize yourself with the local traffic rules and regulations.

2. Choosing the Right Car

Due to the hilly terrain and sometimes slippery conditions, a car with good traction and stability is recommended. Many locals prefer to drive small to medium-sized cars due to the narrow streets and limited parking spaces. If you plan to drive in the winter, a car with four-wheel drive and winter tires is highly recommended.

3. Parking in Bergen

Finding parking in Bergen can be challenging, especially in the city center. Most parking spaces are metered and can be quite expensive. There are also several parking garages available, but these can also be pricey. It’s recommended to use public transportation or walk when possible to avoid the hassle and cost of parking.

4. Driving with an International License

Foreigners can drive in Norway with an international driving license, but only for a period of three months. After this period, you will need to obtain a Norwegian driving license. It’s important to note that not all international licenses are accepted in Norway, so it’s best to check with the Norwegian Public Roads Administration beforehand.

5. Obtaining a Norwegian Driving License

If you’re planning to stay in Norway for more than three months, you will need to obtain a Norwegian driving license. This process involves a theory test and a practical driving test. If you have a driving license from a country within the EU/EEA, you can exchange it for a Norwegian license without taking the tests. However, if your license is from a country outside the EU/EEA, you will need to take both tests.

6. Familiarize Yourself with Local Traffic Rules

Norwegian traffic rules may differ from those in your home country. For example, in Norway, you must always yield to pedestrians and cyclists. Also, it’s important to note that the speed limits are strictly enforced, and fines for speeding can be quite high. Therefore, it’s crucial to familiarize yourself with the local traffic rules to avoid any fines or accidents.

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.

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