Driving on Samui
Driving/riding in Koh Samui is the cheapest and usually most convenient way to travel around the island as a tourist, due to higher than average taxi fares. You may have read in many places on how dangerous the roads are in Thailand, and this is true, so you need to make sure that you are extra vigilant on the roads especially when driving a motorcycle or scooter.
Koh Samui is a tourist destination and as a result many drivers on the roads are tourists who seem to forget that Thailand also has traffic laws and drivers often tend to be less than vigilant when driving. If you are planning on driving on Koh Samui then there are a few things you should take note of:
1. When driving a scooter or big bikes, helmets are compulsory and although this is not really enforced on the island, it is essential that you use a helmet when riding around as it may save your life, and may also have insurance implications should you be in an accident.
2. Tourists on motorbikes do not always pay attention. While driving around you will clearly distinguish the tourists from the locals, beware that tourists have a tendency to forget their indicator lights on or to suddenly stop when they spot something they like.
3. If you hear a loud scooter then be extra vigilant, they are usually driven by younger Thai’s at high speed.
4. Prepare to be overtaken – on the wrong side…!. It is common for people to be passed on the left-hand side (kerb-side) by motorbikes so make sure you always check your blind spots.
5. Enjoy it! Many people are so stressed about driving around Samui that they forget to enjoy the experience, be vigilant and check your blind spots and you will be fine.