Traffic Safety and Road Conditions
While in a foreign country, U.S. citizens may encounter road conditions that differ significantly from those in the United States. The information below concerning The Bahamas is provided for general reference only, and may not be totally accurate in a particular location or circumstance.
It is the law that all drivers and their passengers wear seat belts while riding in a vehicle in The Bahamas. Wearing helmets while riding on a scooter or motorbike is also compulsory.
Driving in The Bahamas is on the left side of the road (i.e. opposite to the United States). Traffic congestion in Nassau is severe, and drivers occasionally display aggressive or careless tendencies. You should always drive defensively and be alert to cars pulling out in front of you from side streets. Local practice is to allow this on an individual basis. Roundabouts are common; unless otherwise designated, you should give way to traffic coming from the right when joining a roundabout. Remember that the slow lane is the far left, not the far right one. Some major streets do not have adequate shoulders or passable sidewalks, compelling pedestrians to walk in the right-of-way. Motorcyclists tend to weave through slow traffic and between lanes of moving vehicles. It is not uncommon to see poorly maintained or excessively loaded vehicles on roadways. Rural roads can be narrow, winding, and in poor condition.
Road flooding occurs frequently in many areas, including Nassau and Freeport, during and after rainstorms. Drivers should be alert for unmarked or poorly marked construction zones. Travel by moped or bicycle can be hazardous, especially in the heavy traffic prevalent in Nassau. You should exercise appropriate caution when renting vehicles in The Bahamas. If you ride a moped or bicycle follow Bahamian helmet law, and drive defensively. Accidents involving U.S. tourists on motorbikes have resulted in severe injuries and fatalities.
Look right then left when crossing the road! Pedestrians should try to remember that vehicular traffic comes from the opposite direction to what you are used to. Many tourists have been struck by cars after failing to check properly for oncoming traffic.
Emergency ambulance service is generally available and can be reached by dialing 911 or 919. Roadside assistance is also widely available through private towing services. Please refer to our Road Safety page for more information. Visit the web site of The Bahamas’ national tourist office and national authority responsible for road safety.
You are responsible for ensuring that you meet and comply with foreign entry requirements, health requirements and that you possess the appropriate travel documents. Information provided is subject to change without notice. One should confirm content prior to traveling from other reliable sources. Information published on this website may contain errors. You travel at your own risk and no warranties or guarantees are provided by us.