Be familiar with road laws and culture
“People don’t even think about being injured in a traffic collision when they are on foot.” In fact, a lack of familiarity with local road laws and road culture (for example, stop signs and traffic lights are ignored in some countries), combined with poor traffic infrastructure (missing signs, dangerous roads, unsafe vehicles, improper driver training, lack of crosswalks and more) are to blame for the vast majority of road—including pedestrian—accidents.
A motto of ASIRT is “know before you go,” says Sobel. You’ll find a wealth of traffic and road safety information for more than 140 different countries at asirt.org. (Road Travel Reports from ASIRT cost travelers $40; a discount is available for seniors.) There is also a free checklist to go over with a rental car company. Sobel also strongly recommends against driving in foreign countries at night. In countries with poor driving safety, consider hiring a reputable driver to take you around (contact ASIRT for recommendations).