Ok, so from first glance at the title this may strike you as a silly blog. After all everyone knows how to cross the street safely from a very young age.
However after years of being brain trained especially in the USA and Canada we instinctively believe a certain set of rules.
1) Pedestrians always have the right of way.
2) If there is a striped cross walk pedestrians defiantly have the right of way.
3) Vehicles will stop for you so you can safely cross the road.
Unfortunately these top 3 rules that we have been bought up with do not apply in the Riviera Maya. Living and working here I constantly see accidents waiting to happen. Cars having to try to stop on a dime because a tourist has just walked out onto the street, and people trying to cross the road in front of one vehicle only to be almost run over by another one who decided to just continue to drive at speed and veer around the stopped vehicle.
I hope you read this blog before traveling here as it is important to know the rules. Yes there are rules here in regards to crossing the street! Pedestrians and vehicles alike know and respect those rules. They are just different.
1) Vehicles have the right of way on the road
2) Pedestrians only have the right of way on any type of cross walk if it is "raised" cross walk.
3) A regular stripped line on the road does not mean cars will stop for you and you have the right of way. It simply is there to indicate where the best place to try and cross the road is due to either a dipped sidewalk or a Tope (A large speed bump that is used to slow down traffic) that is close by.
4) If a vehicle does stop for you to cross make sure the vehicle puts its hazard 4-way lights on and blinking. This signals other vehicles that the vehicle has stopped for a reason and they should too.
5) Watch for other cars going around the stopped car at speed on the road. After all they have the right of way on the roads.
So please please do not just bomb across the street with your stroller and kids in tow without being aware of the rules here. The last thing you, a driver, or the Mexican Government wants is anything to happen to Mexico's most precious resource. Your tourism.
Check out our Family Friendly Activities page for more information on what to do here with your family.