Left Hand Drive Driving Orientation – The Biggest Failure Of The British Empire

Via Chartsbin

The British Empire was the most extensive empires in world history. Before World War I, at the peak of its power, the British Empire looked over a population of about 458 million people, or approximately 1/4 of both the world’s population and total land area. As a result, British influence remains strong throughout the world to this day. Everything from legal and governmental systems, militarily structure, sports (cricket, rugby, and football), and the English language itself are core elements of societies around the world.

But one thing that ultimately failed to catch on was the English’s preferred driving orientation, the left side of the road. Here’s why left hand drive driving orientation is the biggest failure of the British Empire.

Left Hand Drive vs Right Hand Drive Countries

Left Hand Drive Driving Orientation - The Biggest Failure of the British Empire
Via Chartsbin

This map shows both left hand drive countries and right hand drive countries (click on the image to zoom in). By the numbers, 165 countries and territories drive on the right-hand side of the road compared to only 75 countries and territories preferring the left. Furthermore, a massive majority of the world population, including China, Europe (except the UK) and the United States all drive on the right.

So what side of the road do most people drive on? Here’s a list of each country and its driving orientation:

Afghanistanright side
Albaniaright side
Algeriaright side
American Samoaright side
Andorraright side
Angolaright side
Anguillaleft side
Antigua and Barbudaleft side
Argentinaright side
Armeniaright side
Arubaright side
Australialeft side
Austriaright side
Azerbaijanright side
Bahamas, Theleft side
Bahrainright side
Bangladeshleft side
Barbadosleft side
Belarusright side
Belgiumright side
Belizeright side
Beninright side
Bermudaleft side
Bhutanleft side
Boliviaright side
Bosnia and Herzegovinaright side
Botswanaleft side
Brazilright side
British Indian Ocean Territoryright side
Bruneileft side
Bulgariaright side
Burkina Fasoright side
Burundiright side
Cambodiaright side
Cameroonright side
Canadaright side
Cape Verderight side
Cayman Islandsleft side
Central African Republicright side
Chadright side
Chileright side
Chinaright side
Christmas Islandleft side
Cocos (Keeling) Islandsleft side
Colombiaright side
Comorosright side
Congo, Republic of theright side
Congo, Democratic Republic of theright side
Cook Islandsleft side
Costa Ricaright side
Côte d’Ivoireright side
Croatiaright side
Cubaright side
Cyprusleft side
Czech Republicright side
Denmarkright side
Djiboutiright side
Dominicaleft side
Dominican Republicright side
Ecuadorright side
Egyptright side
El Salvadorright side
Equatorial Guinearight side
Eritrearight side
Estoniaright side
Ethiopiaright side
Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)left side
Faroe Islandsright side
Fijileft side
Finlandright side
Franceright side
French Guianaright side
French Polynesiaright side
Gabonright side
Gambia, Theright side
Georgiaright side
Germanyright side
Ghanaright side
Gibraltarright side
Greeceright side
Greenlandright side
Grenadaleft side
Guadelouperight side
Guamright side
Guatemalaright side
Guernseyleft side
Guinearight side
Guinea-Bissauright side
Guyanaleft side
Haitiright side
Holy See (Vatican City)right side
Hondurasright side
Hong Kongleft side
Hungaryright side
Icelandright side
Indialeft side
Indonesialeft side
Iranright side
Iraqright side
Irelandleft side
Isle of Manleft side
Israelright side
Italyright side
Jamaicaleft side
Japanleft side
Jerseyleft side
Jordanright side
Kazakhstanright side
Kenyaleft side
Kiribatileft side
Korea, Northright side
Korea, Southright side
Kuwaitright side
Kyrgyzstanright side
Laosright side
Latviaright side
Lebanonright side
Lesotholeft side
Liberiaright side
Libyaright side
Liechtensteinright side
Lithuaniaright side
Luxembourgright side
Macauleft side
Macedoniaright side
Madagascarright side
Malawileft side
Malaysialeft side
Maldivesleft side
Maliright side
Maltaleft side
Marshall Islandsright side
Martiniqueright side
Mauritaniaright side
Mauritiusleft side
Mayotteright side
Mexicoright side
Micronesia, Federated States ofright side
Moldovaright side
Monacoright side
Mongoliaright side
Montenegroright side
Montserratleft side
Moroccoright side
Mozambiqueleft side
Burmaright side
Namibialeft side
Nauruleft side
Nepalleft side
Netherlandsright side
Netherlands Antillesright side
New Caledoniaright side
New Zealandleft side
Nicaraguaright side
Nigerright side
Nigeriaright side
Niueleft side
Norfolk Islandleft side
Northern Mariana Islandsright side
Norwayright side
Omanright side
Pakistanleft side
Palauright side
West Bankright side
Panamaright side
Papua New Guinealeft side
Paraguayright side
Peruright side
Philippinesright side
Pitcairn Islandsleft side
Polandright side
Portugalright side
Puerto Ricoright side
Qatarright side
Réunionright side
Romaniaright side
Russiaright side
Rwandaright side
Saint Barthélemyright side
Saint Helenaleft side
Saint Kitts and Nevisleft side
Saint Lucialeft side
Saint Martinright side
Saint Pierre and Miquelonright side
Saint Vincent and the Grenadinesleft side
Samoaleft side
San Marinoright side
Sao Tome and Principeright side
Saudi Arabiaright side
Senegalright side
Serbiaright side
Seychellesleft side
Sierra Leoneright side
Singaporeleft side
Slovakiaright side
Sloveniaright side
Solomon Islandsleft side
Somaliaright side
South Africaleft side
Spainright side
Sri Lankaleft side
Sudanright side
Surinameleft side
Svalbardright side
Swazilandleft side
Swedenright side
Switzerlandright side
Syriaright side
Taiwanright side
Tajikistanright side
Tanzanialeft side
Thailandleft side
Timor-Lesteleft side
Togoright side
Tokelauleft side
Tongaleft side
Trinidad and Tobagoleft side
Tunisiaright side
Turkeyright side
Turkmenistanright side
Turks and Caicos Islandsleft side
Tuvaluleft side
Ugandaleft side
Ukraineright side
United Arab Emiratesright side
United Kingdomleft side
United Statesright side
Uruguayright side
Uzbekistanright side
Vanuaturight side
Venezuelaright side
Vietnamright side
British Virgin Islandsleft side
Virgin Islandsleft side
Wallis and Futunaright side
Western Sahararight side
Yemenright side
Zambialeft side
Zimbabweleft side
Midway Islandsright side


Why Do Some Countries Drive On The Left Side Of The Road?

When comparing left-handed vs right-handed people, lefties are definitely the minority. 70-90% of the world’s population is right-handed. Thanks to right-handed instinct, it’s natural for most people to walk or drive on the right side of the road.

So why did the British choose the other side of the road? Swords. Since most people are right-handed, feudal societies, like early England, preferred to pass someone on the left so they could draw their sword with their right hand if necessary.

Left Hand Drive vs Right Hand Drive

So what side of the road do you drive on? Have you driven on both sides of the road? Which side do you prefer left hand drive or right hand drive? Please tell us in the comments below.

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