I was warned, I’ll admit that; probably more than anything else, when I was preparing to move, people told me that it’d be so much worse than I thought. Living in New York at the time, I figured there was no way, chalking it up to people who just didn’t know how bad it could get in the Big Apple. But I’m now ready to acknowledge the one basic fact:

Boston drivers suck, way worse than any others I’ve experienced.

Every day, I’m stunned by something new on the roads. People turn left across three lanes of busy oncoming traffic without even thinking about waiting for a gap. A “No Turn On Red” sign isn’t a rule, nor is it a suggestion, but rather, it’s a challenge. Shoulders aren’t for unexpected car maintenance, they’re for unexpected chances to floor your car to get past someone. And if a light turns green during the twelve milliseconds it takes for you to blink, don’t worry, because inevitably your ears will still be able to hear the car behind you lay on the horn before light again hits your retina. It’s totally unbelievable.

After twelve years in New York, I’m enjoying owning a car, but I have to say that I worry about accident damage every time I venture out of my parking spot.


Someone hit my car about a month ago (scratched the back bumper). Less than a week after having it back from the body-shop (and it was an exhausting exercise dealing with them and the insurance company) - someone hits my car again this weekend. Less than a week. To top it off, trying to navigate a much too tight turn in a parking garage, and my front bumper is scratched too. I’m seriously fed up. It’s a beautiful expensive car - but it almost doesn’t pay to fix. I hate driving here - if public transportation was more readily available and convenient, I’d take it all the time!!

• Posted by: Jennifer on Aug 7, 2003, 8:12 AM

New York drivers are aggressive to the point of hostility but also relatively competent. Boston drivers stereotypically are reckless and incompetent.

• Posted by: xian on Aug 7, 2003, 1:41 PM

I’ve made the opposite move from you. I lived in Boston for 5 years and I find driving in NYC downright pleasurable. My only saving grace was that I visited India just before I moved to Boston. Surviving traffic in India will make Boston’s driving seem almost civilized :-)

• Posted by: Vinod Kurup on Aug 7, 2003, 10:49 PM

You think it’s bad now? Wait until the rest of the Boston drivers come back from their summer homes in Maine.

• Posted by: Steve A on Aug 8, 2003, 9:24 AM

And don’t forget the traffic circles :-)

• Posted by: Paul on Aug 10, 2003, 1:44 AM

“Traffic circle”?! That’s a “ROTARY” in Mass., pal. ;^)
People in Colorado have no idea what I’m talking about when I say “you go around the rotary and take the third turn”.

• Posted by: Jake on Aug 10, 2003, 7:35 PM

“Traffic circle”?! That’s a “ROTARY” in Mass., pal. ;^)

Hey I’m a little rusty … Its been a while since I lived in Boston. And the first time I was WAY TO YOUNG to drive, and besides the steering wheel in my car seat didn’t seem to do anything. :-)

• Posted by: Paul on Aug 12, 2003, 10:40 AM

If you dont like driving here, dont visit here,.

Massachusetts is the best darn state in the union ……

• Posted by: Jeff on Dec 17, 2003, 12:25 AM

Wow, Jeff, great comments! Thanks for contributing…

• Posted by: Jason on Dec 17, 2003, 8:11 AM
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