Cambodia - Transportation and Roads
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Cambodia - Transportation and Roads Phnom Penh Reviews
Apr 03, 2007
I was told by many people (both tourists and locals) that we should not rent our own car in Cambodia.
There are two main reasons for this:
First, they drive differently here then they do in countries that actually have traffic/road laws. I’m sure they have rules in Cambodia, but nobody ever follows them and they are rarely enforced. To actually drive here, you need to have nerves of steel. I could hardly stand being a passenger sometimes.
Secondly, the are some serious liability issues. Do not hit someone or something there. Aside from the fact that I’m sure you do not want hit any people (at least I hope not), you’ll be shelling out a lot of money if you do. I don’t know how much, but I’m sure it’ll do some major damage to your pocketbook.
My suggestion: Hire a driver! It shouldn’t cost much more then a rental and you are not responsible if something happens to either the driver’s car, the other person’s car, any repairs, etc. Try to negotiate what you think is a fair price and the more people you have in the car the cheaper it is for the individual person. *Don’t be afraid to chat with other tourists to see where they are going. We did this a couple times and saved quite a bit of money.*
We took the “Mekong Express Limousine Bus” to go to several places in Cambodia, as well as a direct bus to Ho Chi Minh(Saigon), Vietnam from Phnom Penh. We always had great service, the buses were air conditioned and they served snacks and water. From Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh, it cost $13USD. Going from Phnom Penh to Siem Reap, it cost $10USD and from Sihanoukville to Phnom Penh it cost $6. Each trip took a approx. 4-6 hours (the reason to be explained in the next section).
The roads in Cambodia are pretty bad. Even if they look good (brand new and paved) don't expect to get anywhere as fast as you would in your own country. There are so many bikes and overloaded trucks that it is next to impossible to go over 60 km/h. No joke! It may only take us 20-25 minutes to do 50 km/h here in Canada but in Cambodia it'll take you well over an hour. They are trying to fix quite a few of the roads, so that may cause some delays as well.
If you are going to be traveling around Cambodia, factor in travel time. We allowed one full day for travel, so we wouldn’t be rushing to get to places on time. Just try to be patient and enjoy the scenery.
Part of the Cambodia - April 2007 travel blog
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