Driving In Kazakhstan.Road traffic laws
Driving In Kazakhstan
Foreign visitors wishing to drive in Kazakhstan should have an International driver license. Driving in Kazakhstan with the International driver license is permitted for up to six months. You may need a 1968 International Driving Permit and your own licence to drive in Kazakhstan. If you’re travelling overland between Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan make sure your customs declaration and temporary import licence covers the period you’ll be in all three countries are they are covered by the same customs agreement.
International driver’s license at www.idltrip.com
Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus are a single Customs Union so if you are planning to travel overland in your own vehicle make sure your customs declaration and temporary import licence are valid for the entire period of stay in all three countries. Your import licence can be extended for up to a year if necessary by contacting the customs authorities in any of the three countries.
Service stations are limited outside the main cities. Make sure you take all you need for your journey including water. Make sure your vehicle is properly maintained and in good condition for lengthy journeys.
Many roads are poorly maintained and road works or damaged roads are often not clearly signposted. 90% of the country’s 95,000km of roads are paved but many roads in Kazakhstan are in poor repair, especially in rural areas with potholes which may be dangerously deep, and accidents are common, especially in winter when snow and ice can be a problem. Road signs are few away from cities and many that exist will be in Cyrillic script. Street lighting may be turned off at night so avoid driving after dark if possible. Driving standards can be erratic. In some remote areas there are often stray animals on the roads. These are especially difficult to see in the dark. In winter, roads can become hazardous due to snow and ice.
Road traffic laws:
Driving styles can be fast and aggressive especially in and around Almaty, and beware of livestock on rural roads, particularly after dark. Traffic police have reportedly stopped cars to extort bribes on main city streets and at periodic checkpoints on major highways. Locals often advise recording interactions with the police using a dashcam to deter corrupt behaviour. The road between Almaty and Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, is especially treacherous at night or during poor weather so you should take extreme care if driving this route and avoid doing so at night. On highways keep an eye out for cars driving the wrong way against the traffic flow. This can happen if there is no turning point for a number of miles so the driver opts to take the shortest route to avoid a lengthy drive and a U-turn.
Kazakhstan Car Rental – Hertz and Avis have outlets in Kazakhstan.