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Urdu in Pakistan


Cars and Driving

Car rental services can be found in most major cities. However, unless one is accustomed to driving on the left side of the road and to navigating very free-flowing and crowded traffic situations, it is probably best to hire both a car and a driver. Most car rental services will have cars with drivers as an option. Drivers tend to be aggressive, so drive carefully. Pedestrians should be especially careful.

The term "gas station" is not used. The preferred English term is "petrol pump." Petrol pumps usually have signs indicating the pump's services in English. Petrol is purchased by indicating the monetary amount for the quantity of petrol. For example, one might ask the attendant for 200 rupees of petrol. A sign on the pump should indicate the number of liters that specific amounts of rupees will purchase. Prices are fairly consistent between various pumps. Watch the meter on the pump to make sure it starts at zero and ends at the amount requested.

The attendant does not expect a tip. However, often little kids will start to wipe the windscreen (windshield in American English). This happens at petrol pumps and also when cars stop at intersections. Drivers who want the windscreen cleaned should tip the person 1-2 rupees. Drivers who do not want the service should say a firm "No, I don't want it" without making eye contact. One will also find a variety of hawkers at intersections selling goods such as flowers and newspapers. These should also be given a firm "No" without making eye contact or should be paid or tipped accordingly.
In Pakistani English, traffic lights are called "signals." Rotaries or traffic circles are called "roundabouts." Speed bumps are called "speed breakers."


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