Philippine Road Rules

Monday, December 31, 2007

subtitle: Rules of Engagement for Foreigners Driving in Philippine Roads

I was talking to my girlfriend last night about how shitty the conditions of our roads and motorists are, which is usually the catch-all topic every in-the-car conversation boils down to when you've been on the road for at least an hour. She mentioned that if Australians were to drive on a laneless road like what constitutes 90% of our roads, they'd freak out, like maybe shout "Crikey!" a lot or whatever the hell they find fashionable nowadays.

To prevent that sort of thing from happening, I've decided to write an article about the some what subtle (read: day and night) differences between the theoretical rules and what gets applied on the road. Foreigners can read this primer to know what's in store for them while local drivers can read this to know why they're a bunch of idiots anyway.

On a three-lane road, theoretically, the middle lane is for the slow vehicles while the inner lane is for the fast moving vehicles. The outer lane is for exiting vehicles, or if there are no exits, it's another lane for overtaking. In actual Philippine practice, the middle lane is for the slow vehicles, along with the inner and outer lanes, which are also for overtaking, exiting, and occasionally coasting, probably to induce aneurysms on the other drivers on purpose.

Lines on the Road
Solid yellow lines mean that the outer lane is for exclusive use of exiting vehicles and public utility vehicles. Solid white lines mean that the overtaking is prohibited. Dashed white lines mean that overtaking is allowed, but should be done properly. Double lines are cautionary boundaries for merging roads, and other situations where yielding must be absolute.

Circular roads used for intersections with more than four exit points. Fuck Rotundas. If you can avoid these while driving, do it. Trust me on this.

Turn Signals
Turning signals are used to convey that you will be turning at the next intersection, or on a straightway, will be changing lanes. Be warned however, that Filipino drivers will consider this act as a direct challenge to the size of their penis, with the flashing light seemingly a signal form of the phrase "I am going to cut your lane, and you can't do anything about it." Of course, to the average Filipino driver, anything leaves a lot to interpretation.

Yield/No Yield Signals
In the absence of traffic lights, flashes of the headlights can be used as semaphores that tell drivers which car can get the right of way first. One flash means "I'll go first." and two flashes mean "You go first." Here in the Philippines, however, the meaning is different, in a sense that one flash means "I'll go first, you dirty faggot." and two flashes means "You go first, but you're still a dirty faggot, faggot." Expect retaliation soon afterwards.

Honking is an emergency device used to alert everyone of your presence, or any impending peril that may involve either you or the people around you. In most countries, honking indiscriminately while within city limits is already a traffic violation, while doing it outside the city is grounds for lashings or verbal abuse (depending on whether or not you live in Singapore)
Here in the Philippines, honking is a more primitive kind of communication, the same way ducks like to convey their feelings by quacking indiscriminately. Here are some possible meanings of honks in our country:

"Dude, move your fucking car"
"I want to buy cigarettes and candy from the greasy-looking kid"
"Come, ride my bus. I have a loud horn, so you should totally go inside."
"Thanks, asshole"
"I want to see your portfolio of harlots, Mr. Pimp."

I'll post more when I feel like it.


Anonymous said...

"I want to buy cigarettes and candy from the greasy-looking kid"


Anonymous said...

well done.....and very true

Anonymous said...


i like that coment.i ben to many difrent countries driving a car,but the Philipines is the vorse countrye i have ben in ven it comes to drivers!I ben a profesional drivers for over 30 years,but have never sen so many craysy drivers as in the Philipines,drivers here seams to disregard all trafickrules,no vonder there are so many axidents here the vay some drivers are driving here.i vould sai the vorse drivers here are Yupneydrivers,taxidrivers and bus drivers.But im still driving here,and are still alive!

Anonymous said...

Hey. I've read your article in hopes that I could find something useful. But guess what? The only thing I've learned is to count how many times you curse. And by the way, that greasy looking kid you were insulting in your article? That kid is something, and he is doing a lot hell of things to stay alive while you sit comfortable writing shitty articles that are totally useless.

Here's my advice, instead of wasting people's time reading your shitty content, why not post on your Facebook -- where people don't give a shit. GOD!


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