To drive a rental car, it is sufficient your valid driving license and to be 21 years old.
Driving is on the right and also the precedence, but it is a good idea to maintain a defensive driving, since often such priority is not respected and not always a stop sign or a red light are used to stop a reckless or drunk driver, especially on Friday and Saturday nights.
All cities are drawn as the Roman Quadra, with roads running through them, forming straight lines and intersections at 90 °, with square blocks of houses, arranged in precise measurements, so with a little memory and attention, orientation is quite easy.
The right turn is continuous even at a red light while, to turn left, you have to wait for the green light with an arrow, before to turn left.
Even the U-turns are possible, as long as there is a sign that indicates it is forbidden.
You will find the famous 4 ALTOS signs, a system of four places stop, at an intersection, where you have to stop and give way not to the right, but to whom physically comes there first. Then will follow the vehicles arriving there, in chronological order. But even in these occasions, be very careful, because many drivers try to "eat" the stop!
Often, especially in La Paz, the signs that indicate the stop, are covered by vegetation and therefore invisible to those unfamiliar with that road, so be very careful and drive at low speed.
Another problem, especially in larger cities, is the fact that often you go along a road that leads into a one-way street, but if there is not a sign that announce that, it's quite easy to make a mistake and maybe find yourself turning against traffic. To avoid this, see how the vehicles are parked in the street, and if on both sides, cars are all parked in the same direction, that one is the traveling direction. And in fact, it is prohibited to park in the wrong direction.
The latest trend of the various municipalities, is to put countless speed bumps, called TOPES, across the road, in order to slow down the speed, while crossing towns. They are marked by warning signs, but especially at night, many times you can see them at the very last minute and that can produce an inevitable heavy jolt.
The whole peninsula is crossed in the middle, from North to South, by the A1, a two-lane paved road, called Carretera Transpeninsular, which combines all the major cities and is served by a good network of Pemex petrol stations, the only brand sold in the country. There are two types of gasoline: the red, with more octane and higher price and the green, called MAGNA, with less octanes, used practically by the majority of vehicles. The diesel is only used by large trucks.
The road surface is generally good, but often there are sites that, given the narrowness of the road, off-road detours are obliged. These sites are always well marked, but even there, caution is never enough.
In principle, it is good practice to maintain a moderate speed, that can allow sudden braking safely, since very often the road is crossed by animals such as cows, horses, donkeys, dogs, coyotes, chickens, whose impact, as well as the kill or injure of the animal may, depending on its size and your speed, severely damage the vehicle and its occupants.
Beware of overtaking from either direction, in the vicinity of bumps, dips or curves that limit visibility.
About overtaking, often slow moving trucks in front of you, turn on their left direction, as if to turn left but, instead, that is a warning sign that it can be overtaken.
As regards to the speed limit, on the open road it is 55 km. but no one respects it; whereas, during the crossing of towns, it could also be of 25 km. I advise you to comply with this limit, which is well marked with signs, especially through small villages, where the police, having nothing else to do, use those limits, to fine drivers who do not respect them.
To the north of La Paz, before Mulege and after San Ignacio, you will meet military checkpoints, where you will be asked to stop the vehicle for inspection. Do not worry, this is a routine operation of a control to prevent the trafficking of drugs and weapons. Be gentle with the soldiers and do not shoot photograps or videos.
Finally, and I will never get tired of repeating it, driveby carefully.
This is a page of our legendary Road Book that will guide you, step by step, for the duration of your trip.
It will be prepared especially for you and tailored for the season and dates you have chosen.