You are planning to travel to Sri Lanka for your next holiday and you are wondering whether you should travel with a driver or not. Travelling with a driver ensures that you will be safer on the roads since the drivers are experienced. It is also a beautiful human experience that can enlighten your holiday.
Driving in Sri Lanka: exercise permanent awareness
Let your driver take care of your journey and so that you relax while admiring the landscape…and God knows how stunning they are in Sri Lanka!
The way of driving in Sri Lanka can be a little surprising at first and Sri Lankan people tend to take quite some liberties with the regulations. No respect of the priorities, overtaking from the wrong side, honking for no reason or breaking the speed limit are very common. Sometimes, even as a passenger, you will feel a thrill of anxiety and relieved that you don’t have to deal with this situations.
Bus drivers act like they are challenging life and the vehicles are most of the time overloaded. Tuktuk, bicycles, undisciplined pedestrians, dogs resting on the road, trucks, motorbike with three passengers, and scooter with families on them: the driver has to look around permanently and be able to anticipate in order to avoid anything that could possibly happen.
Travel safer with a local driver!
Your local driver is accustomed to the roads, the traffic, the unusual behaviors of men and animals. He is ready to deal with the most surprising and irrational situations.
The driver will also be your GPS since he knows the itineraries like the back of his hand and can find hotels that are even lost in the jungle or high in the mountains. Isn’t it a precious asset in a country where you can’t really rely on the signs?
He knows which roads should be avoided, the one where work is being precede and all the short cuts. He can evaluate the time of the journey, which is very difficult for any traveller.
If the car breaks down, the driver will be in touch with the logistic service of your travel agency. Rest assure that if no solution can be found, a new vehicle will be sent to you in the quickest possible way. This will avoid any last minute change of plan that could disturb your trip.
No matter what the issues are, may they be about the vehicle or not, being with a Singhalese speaking driver is reassuring and he will help you find solutions to any problem you could meet.
Travelling with a driver: a beautiful human experience!
You take off from Europe knowing that your driver will welcome you at the airport. Your local agency would have given you his name and his phone number. Isn’t it comforting to know that everything is ready for you arrival?
More than driving you around, your driver will also be a key to the success of your trip. He will take his role of host very seriously to give you the best welcome into his country, which he is really proud of. He will do everything he can to make you appreciate and love it as much as he does. And most of the time, we will do everything in his power to make you happy.
A driver is also an plethora of good addresses: he knows where to stop to take a good picture, to have a nice coffee or lunch, find the souvenir that you are looking for, how to quickly take you to a doctor or a pharmacy. His knowledge of the country will save you a lot of time! The fact that he speaks Singhalese and sometimes Tamil is another asset that will help you communicate with the local population since, in most villages, English can be very basic.
Some drivers go beyond their duty and can even sometimes be like nannies to families who travel with young kids. Nuwan takes the youngest on his shoulders to help him climb the Mihintale Mountain and Roshan looks after the little one while Mam and Dad go for a swim…!
Sharing a week of holiday with a driver also means learning about the Sri Lankan population. Very often, all along the trip, a real relationship is created and sometimes becomes a friendship that last long after the trip. Many are the travelers that have been invited in their driver’s families and keep some unforgettable memories of it.
Take a look at our programs for Sri Lanka – http://www.shantitravel.com/en/sri-lanka-maldives/