What Frustrates Drivers


What frustrates you the most when driving?
Inconsiderate drivers who don’t give the road their full attention are New Zealand’s biggest driver frustration, according to this year’s AA Insurance survey has found.
Last year’s most frustrating driver behaviour – driving while using a mobile phone – fell 23 places from number 1 in the 2011 AA Insurance Driver Frustration Index, which polled 3,550 New Zealanders aged 18-65 to gain a better understanding of what causes drivers to become frustrated and take unnecessary risks,

The Top 10 Driver Frustrations are:
1. Drivers who are not paying full attention to the road.
2. Drivers who are not courteous while changing lanes or merging.
3. Drivers who don’t indicate or continue to indicate after they need to.
4. Drivers who don’t dip their lights for oncoming traffic at night.
5. Drivers who increase their speed at a passing lane so you can’t pass and/or slow down after the passing lane.
6. Drivers who don’t pull over to allow others to pass.
7. Drivers who turn corners from the wrong lanes.
8. Drivers who follow too closely.
9. Drivers who park very near an intersection and compromise visibility.
10. Drivers of cars who block intersections to get through a phase of lights.

The 2nd most common frustration was drivers who aren’t courteous while changing lanes or merging. This particular behaviour jumped 5 places from seventh in last year’s Driver Frustration Index.

Drivers who don’t indicate, or continue to indicate after they need to, were ranked as the 3rd most frustrating behaviour.
City drivers ranked this as their top frustration, compared to rural drivers who ranked it 7th.
Drivers who don’t dip their lights at night for oncoming traffic placed 4th overall. Male motorists ranked this as their top frustration while female drivers ranked the same behaviour 6th.
Ranked 5th were drivers who increase their speed at passing lanes so others are unable to pass safely. The actions of slow drivers who don’t pull over to allow others to pass them placed 6th overall.
Motorists who block intersections, either by parking too close to an intersection and compromising visibility, or obstructing intersections to get through a set of changing lights, were listed as the 9th & 10th most common frustration respectively.
Auckland city drivers were the only drivers to rate motorists who park near an intersection as a top 10 frustration.




  1. Greg says:

    I don’t spend much time driving - avoid it as much as possible - but my big issues are:

    1) Red light runners - it’s stupid, dangerous and getting worse.
    2) Competitive merging - merge from a stand-still? It’s like saying, “we like congestion”.
    3) Lack of spacial awareness - safety is not up to someone else.

    I gave up driving because Kiwi drivers make the experience painful. As a pedestrian and a bus patron, Kiwi drivers still manage to make transport painful.

  2. Daniel says:

    I really hate it when drivers put on the brakes, and slow down for no apparent reason, then they indicate just a millisecond before they turn. That’s bloody pointless to indicate now because I already got the hint you wanted to turn. It should be Indicate before you Brake!

  3. Ingolfson says:

    Drivers who shout at me when I call them out for speeding out of a driveway, right over a footpath, screaming that “next time I WILL run you over”.

    That said, I have actually been seeing more courteousness from Auckland drivers these days. But it is these occasional extremely bad apples who really can spoil a day.

  4. Matt L says:

    I assume “Drivers who are not courteous while changing lanes or merging” is talking about either those who don’t let you in or even worse the ones who will travel down an empty lane that turns off then at the last minute force their way into a line of traffic that has been waiting paitiently for 20 mins?

    Ingolfson - I agree that in town at least, drivers seem to be getting a little better.

  5. Geoff says:

    People on the motorway who slow to 65km/h because the intend to exit in another kilometre or so.

  6. Matt says:

    Very interesting to note that the 10 most annoying things to drivers are other drivers, and not pedestrians or cyclists.

  7. Ingolfson says:

    Matt - that, like in any survey, responses may also depend on whether this was multiple choice, or a write-in survey…

  8. James B says:

    People who insist on entering the motorway at 20 -30km below the speed limit.
    People who don’t use median strips when turning right or who leave half their car hanging out into the lane when they do.
    People who get stuck in intersections then try and edge their way through crowded pedestrians while giving them a dirty look.
    People who think that orange means go faster. It means stop if it’s safe people!!!!
    People who don’t know where they are going and either a. go slow, b. change lanes suddenly without indicating, c. stop suddenly.

  9. Mike F says:

    My biggest frustration is slow drivers in the “fast lane”.
    I think the above photograph shows the lack of understanding of the road rules - keep left.
    Knowing Auckland drivers these people are probably in the “fast lane” doing under 100km. (by fast lane I refer to maintaining 100km/hr not speeding) regardless of their speed they should keep left unless passing.


  10. James says:

    Red light runners and people following too closely (just about every driver, it seems) are my biggest annoyance.

    As a “slower” driver (I keep to the speed limit), I seem to be constantly being tailgated.

  11. Anthony says:

    My dad ALWAYS put down the pedal when the light goes yellow.
    He seems to think they when we stop at one light in Timaru, we will get stopped at them all.

    Mind you the amount of Traffic Lights in Timaru is getting silly, 13 Traffic Lights and another being put in soon.

  12. James B says:

    @Mike F. Just over take on the left. It’s perfectly legal.

  13. richard says:

    James - overtaking (undertaking) on the left is legal here but if drivers obeyed the law “use left lane unless blocked” it would not be necessary. In UK its illegal to pass on the left and as a result the motorways flow more smoothly with less surprises. I think it is illegal to overtake on the right in mainland Europe as well

    With our haphazard use of motorway lanes we couldn’t operate the higher speed limits they have in Europe.

  14. BD says:

    Dont forget to read this article guys!!!!!!!!!!! NZ is a backwards thinking country, what a waste of $14m this money could be spent on much better things than an ugly looking useless carpark building. Auckland is already dominated by ugly carparks, hope you are reading this Len Brown, i’ve had enough of carparks!!!!!!!!!


  15. James B says:

    One thing I don’t quite understand is what happens in countries that have the no overtaking rule during high congested times when the outside lane happens to be going faster than the right lane due to people leaving the motorway etc. Does this mean that you have to wait for the cars in the inside lane to move before you can move? Or does it become acceptable to overtake using the outside lane?

  16. richard says:

    James I understand that in congestion when traffic in lanes is continuous if one lane is faster than the other then you can pass on the left . However, when traffic overtakes only on the right (left driving) and the left lane is the slow lane , outer fast lane, the outer lane seems to progress faster even when congested.

  17. Helfiah says:

    The rider on the keep left rule in New Zealand is “unless it’s busy”. It would be ludicrous to expect people to continually switch lanes when the left lane is emptied due to an upcoming off-ramp. I guess you know you are in the wrong lane when you are at the head of traffic and not passing anything.


Leave a Comment


XHTML: You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>