Back to Basics: Getting a driver’s license in the United States

You’ve likely been a licensed driver in your home country for years, so it’s easy to assume you’re an expert when it comes to the rules of the road. But now that
2015-Audi-A3-beauty-exterior-005you’re moving to the United States you’re going to have to start all over in order to pass your U.S. driver’s license test. 

The U.S. has its own set of general road rules that you will have to learn in order to pass your test, and most importantly, to be a safe driver on the road. 

 We’re taking you back to the basics of driving in the U.S.


1. In the United States the steering wheel is located on the left-hand side of the vehicle, and traffic drives on the right-hand side of the road.

TIP: When crossing the street always look to your LEFT for oncoming traffic!

2. A traffic light has three signals:

  • RED = STOP

3. A traffic light with yellow blinking lights indicates proceed with caution.

4. A traffic light with red blinking lights should be treated the same as a stop sign.

5. An intersection is the location where two or more roads intersect with each other.

6. At an intersection with a four-way stop (also known as an All-Way Stop) all vehicles must stop and the first vehicle at the intersection is the first allowed to go.

7. If two vehicles approach the intersection at the same time, the vehicle on the right goes first.

8. A yield sign indicates that the driver must slow down and prepare to stop in order to let a driver from another approach proceed.

9. Solid double yellow lines should NEVER be crossed.

10. A solid yellow line located next to a broken dashed yellow line can be crossed by vehicles on the side of the broken yellow line.

11. Most yellow school buses are equipped with flashing lights and a stop sign. It is required by law that you must stop 20-25 feet behind a school bus when it has it’s flashing lights or stop sign on. You may proceed when the lights/sign are disabled.

12. The speed limit in residential areas is 25MPH unless otherwise noted.

13. You must obey the posted speed limit signs at all times.

14. Turn your turn signal on 100 feet before your intended turn.

All states publish local rules of the road, obtainable free from state Departments of Motor Vehicles (DMVs). Get yours to learn more about driving in the United States!



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