Tourist Driving and Safety Information
The law is the law wherever you are... Ignorance is not a defence. Avoid run-ins with the local Sheriff or state troopers by following local rules of the road and enjoy driving in Florida

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In the U.S.A. you drive on the right hand side of the road. You WILL be fined for speeding. You are not allowed to drink and drive and you must turn on your headlights when driving in rain or reduced visibility.
Always stop at a stop sign! Even though the junction may be clear, you are obliged to come to a complete stop before continuing.
Unless otherwise stated, you may turn RIGHT at a RED traffic light providing of course that it is safe to do so. When crossing the road on foot, make sure that you look LEFT first.
When going to petrol stations, you may be required to pay before filling up. All cars use regular unleaded petrol and it is cheaper to use Self Service stations.
If you are stopped by the police for any reason you must stay in your vehicle until the officer comes to you. Do not attempt to get out of the car. If you do not have both your driving license and rental agreement with you, you can be fined.
Should you have an accident, you MUST report it to the local Police. You must not leave the scene of an accident and you must ask for a copy of the report for your car rental company. You should then telephone your car rental company and advise them of the situation
NEVER DRINK AND DRIVE: It is illegal in the State of Florida to visibly carry alcohol or to have an opened container of alcohol in the vehicle. If you are found guilty of Driving Whilst Intoxicated, you will go to prison.
On multi-lane roads, you can be overtaken by vehicles in both the outside and inside lanes. American drivers in general will not allow you to cut in so make sure that you are in the correct lane at junctions.
Roads are much wider than in the U.K. and driving tends to be easier.
Rush hour is normally between 7:00 and 10:30 in the morning and between 15:00 and 19:00 in the afternoon.
You are required to STOP if a school bus stops, even if you are on the other side of the road. It is illegal to overtake a school bus when it is stopped for loading or unloading passengers. You should remain stationary until all the children are clear of the road and the bus has moved off. When entering a school district, watch out for reduced speed signs.

DO WE SPEAK THE SAME LANGUAGE ? When it comes to driving and eating in America, there are a number of language differences . Here are a few of the most common.





Car Bonnet


Hand Brake

Parking Break

Car Boot


Give Way


Gear Lever

Stick Shift





Road surface








Central Reservation


Car Park

Parking Lot



Lightly cooked eggs on both sides

Eggs over easy

Normal fried eggs

Eggs sunny side up

Eggs well cooked in both sides

Eggs over hard

Plain scone (no fruit)




Whole grain bread



French Fries





Tomato sauce


Brown sauce

Steak sauce

Visiting the Attractions

Organisation is the key. Plan out your entire holiday even before your holiday starts. Make sure that a late night is not followed by an early morning start to another busy day.
Walkie talkies are relatively cheap, and especially with children, essential to maintain contact if the party is to split up.
Take a rucksack with food and drink. It may be slightly cumbersome to start with, but food soon goes and park costs are high enough already.
Collect the day's schedule of events as you enter each Park and plan your day around the special shows. Don't forget to get a map of the Park.
Walk to the furthest point from the entrance and work your way back to avoid the queues. If the ride/show has two queues choose the left. Most people automatically go to the right.
Make sure that everyone in your party has suitable clothing and comfortable shoes for the hundreds of miles you will walk during your holiday. (It will feel like you've walked hundreds of miles)
Take plenty of sun block and cover up, you can easily get burned just walking around. Hats and sunglasses are a must for adults as well as children. Make plenty of drink stops to rest aching feet and to avoid dehydration. You will find plenty of free water fountains.
And finally, make a note of where you parked your car. Although all car parks are clearly marked in rows (or names) and numbers e.g. Pluto 36, people leave their cars and never think to make a note of where they left them. Theme park car parks are enormous and  all rental cars do look the same.

Practical safety tips

As with most major cities around the world, including Great Britain, it is worth following a few simple common sense rules on safety. When in areas frequented by both tourists and residents such as shopping malls and supermarkets don't carry video cameras etc.. lock them safely in the boot of the car. Always stay within the tourist areas at night and return home when the shops close. Avoid wearing expensive jewellery and bum bags stuffed full of Travellers Cheques. If you walk around looking like you are worth mugging, someone may be tempted. As a golden rule, if you wouldn't do it in London, don't do it in Orlando. The Orlando police are very helpful and much more visible than in the U.K.


Should you lose your passport during your holiday, the British Consulate is at Sun Bank Tower, Suite 2110, South Orange Avenue, Orlando. Telephone (407) 426 7855

Weather conditions

SPRING: March - May.
High temperatures in the upper 80's, possible lows 50's. Wear shorts and light clothing for daytime. Light sweater for cooler evenings.

SUMMER: June - September.
Daily high temperatures in upper 90's with evening temperatures averaging 70's. Thunderstorms and showers likely in afternoons usually lasting about one hour. Wear shorts and light clothing. Sun protection is a MUST.

AUTUMN: October - Mid December.
Daily temperatures around 89's with evenings in the 60's. Light clothing should be worn in the daytime with sweater or jacket for evenings.

WINTER: Mid December - February.
Daily high temperatures in the 60's to 70's with lows in the 40's. Shorts and light clothing may be worn in the daytime with jacket or light coat for evening wear. 

Shopping in Florida

There is a huge variety of restaurants in Florida, enough to suit every taste from traditional American food to Indian, Italian, Mexican and Chinese. Most restaurants will expect you to dress in shirt and shoes at all times. It is customary to dress for dinner in many restaurants. Of course most people think of fast food outlets when they think of America and of course there is no shortage of them.

Most bars are within restaurants although a number of novelty, bars resembling English Pubs have sprung up all over Kissimmee. Many bars have "Happy Hour" with half price drinks. The legal drinking age in Florida is 21. You must have a picture I.D. if you want to be served in a bar or supermarket. If you intend going out for the evening make sure that you get a taxi or that one of your party is not drinking. Drink drive laws are very strict and you could face imprisonment.

Tipping is customary in bars and restaurants even for only one drink. A cover charge or drink minimum may be applicable to enter some clubs.

Clothing and footwear are much cheaper in Florida than in the U.K. especially if you visit one of the shopping malls such as Beltz Factory Outlet Mall at the end of International Drive. Don't forget that American sizes are different to both English and European sizes. Whilst men's clothing is the same, women's clothing is different. A US size 12 is the equivalent to an English size 14 or a European 42. Men's shoes are normally one size larger and women's shoes one and a half sizes larger.

Don't be tempted by the availability of top feature films on Video. These will not play on our system due to the difference in sound and vision frequencies. A number of the attractions do sell souvenir videos which are clearly marked "PAL" these tapes will play back home. If you hire a Video Camera make sure it is "PAL" format. You will also have a problem purchasing mains electrical goods as the US voltage is only 110.

Banks are normally open between 09:00 and 16:00 Monday to Friday and close on Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays. Larger branches operate a "drive thru" service on Saturdays. Sun Trust Bank has branches at The Magic Kingdom, EPCOT and Sea World.

Most Banks will accept credit cards for cash advances or Travellers Cheques. Cash advances can be obtained from the ATM machines if you have your PIN number.

Travellers Cheques are accepted in all shops although you should avoid high denominations.

is not included in prices in the shops and will be added on at the checkout. At present, 6% tax is added to all purchases in Orange County and 7% in Osceola County.

Stamps are available from vending machines located within almost every shop and supermarket. These machines do not issue stamps at face value. Guests staying at Poinciana may purchase postage stamps at face value from the Post Office at the Doverplum Centre.


Airlines   Disney   Fantasy of Flight   Fun Facts   Home   Kissimmee   Poinciana
State Symbols   Shows   Useful facts   Villa video   Web cams

Central Florida   Northern Florida   Southern Florida

Airlines   Disney   Fantasy of Flight   Fun Facts   Home   Kissimmee   Poinciana
State Symbols   Shows   Useful facts   Villa video   Web cams

Central Florida   Northern Florida   Southern Florida

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