Haitian Rules of the Road

Listed below are an American’s view of the Haitian Rules of the Road:
1. Size matters. If you are driving a big truck you have the right of way over a small truck.
2. Do you know how many people can fit on a “Tap Tap?’ (Haitian taxi – often made out of rather old pick up trucks). One more.
3. Lines on a road rarely exist and are rarely followed.
4. Honking your horn can mean the following, “Ready or not, here I come!” “Hey get out of my way!” “Wadson, my man, how are you doing?” “Open the gate, I’m home.” “Moooove your cow or I’m going to run it over.” There are many other possibilities.
5. Speed bumps are often referred to as “silent police..”
6. Hang on at all times. Or risk a traumatic brain injury.
7. Don’t open a bottle of carbonated beverages in a moving vehicle unless you do it very slowly and carefully.
8. It is impossible to avoid pot holes and rocks but it is good to try anyway.
9. Mufflers and exhaust pipes are optional.
10. If you drive a motorcycle (aka a moto) you can fit all sorts of things on the moto that you couldn’t in the U,.S. I’ve seen as many as 7 people on one moto. I’ve seen a washer, a pole with live chickens tied upside down heading to market, just to name a few (disclaimer – I haven’t seen all of them – some of them have been pictures from friends who live in Haiti)

These are by no means the actual rules of the road in Haiti. But in these, the experience of riding in Haiti, especially riding in the back of a truck, hopefully comes through a bit more.

I’ve seen pictures of many interesting things.

It has very little similarity to driving in the United States.


P.S. Did I mention that because you are outside, you will get to smell of the smells and feel all of the feels? Smell the flowers – and the exhaust. Smell the meat market and the burning charcoal. The list could go on and on…….

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