Tips on sailing out of Southampton, United Kingdom, Part 2

ByRick Deutsch

Tips on sailing out of Southampton, United Kingdom, Part 2

England is neat….but I hear the traffic is as bad as Silicon Valley.  Our freeways are jammed until about 10 am now!  “We need the jobs.”  Really? What about the quality of life? Apple, Facebook and Google are hiring like there’s a boom on. Now Google plans to build a 22,000 worker campus in downtown San Jose.

That’s my rant for today…I’m a no-growth guy.  The message is to be prepared for traffic heading to Southampton.  If you leave in the a.m., you will be wise as the bulk is heading into London.

As promised in the last blog – here’s Part 2 of our tips on getting to Southampton.

Tip 3 – Traffic Circles everywhere. When you get off the “motorway,” i.e. the “M4.” Most of the the arterials like the “A383,” are controlled by “Traffic Circles,” aka “Roundabouts.” The problem for us yanks is that we are driving on the left side and are thrust into a counter-clockwise flow….then need to come out of it to our left and into the next left lane. This can take some thinking.  Don’t chew gum and try this at the same time.  You may have to continue circling until you have the confidence to get out.

Tip 4. – They use diesel fuel. Before you turn your car in at the port, you need to fill it up. DO THIS on your own. The car rental place will gouge you real bad. Pay attention. Your car is probably diesel. To throw you off, the GASOLINE pump hoses are green.  In the USA they are black.  This could be a costly mistake.


Be sure to visit Stonehenge on your way to Southampton

Tip 5 –  When you check out your rental car – be sure to have them mark prior damages. Check the left front wheel carefully. Have them mark the dings on the wheel down.  Americans have a tendency to drift to the left. And it’s hard to make turns without dinging the wheel.  You don’t want to  be charged.

Tip 6 – You need to have an International Driving Permit – not to rent the car, but to show to a “Bobby” if you get stopped. This is the dumbest thing ever – you need to have your normal Driver License anyway. The rental car company doesn’t care –but the cops must.  They cost $30 at AAA plus two passport photos. A rip-off!!

All for today – give us a shout!

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