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To turn down a job offer based on this requirement

(62 Posts)
autrejour Wed 06-Mar-19 11:30:38

I have been offered a job where I am required to do some driving in Europe ( 2- 3 hr journeys). There are no other options as sites are in very remote locations so no trains or taxis. I am a very nervous driver and the thought of driving on the wrong side by myself really puts me off.
I also have another offer and currently trying to weigh the pros and cons of both jobs .
Am I unreasonable to even think this will be a problem and worry about it or should I just get a grip and think I’ll be fine.

Sparklesocks Wed 06-Mar-19 11:35:35

If it’s an amazing job it would be a shame to turn it down for this, but depends how bad your anxiety is.
If you got a few ‘refresher’ lessons with an instructor, did some motorways/rural areas/things you’re anxious about, would that help do you think?

Otherwise thinking about the other job, is it the better option? If so, sorted! But if the only thing stopping you taking this job is the driving you might regret it down the line.

EmmaGrundyForPM Wed 06-Mar-19 11:38:48

If you are driving abroad then presumably it will be in hire car. It is easier to drive a hire car abroad than a British car.

WinterHeatWave Wed 06-Mar-19 11:41:28

Of course taxis are possible!
Work regularly used to book taxis for me to get from airport to the factory where the journey was a couple of hours. We were given a complete choice on whether to drive or not. I used to get a taxi the first few times, then take a hire car when I started knowing the way. I refused point blank to drive in South Africa or Malaysia tho!

TheInvestigator Wed 06-Mar-19 11:42:14

If you take the job, be prepared with the documentation and international driving permit and all of that which you will need if we leave with a No Deal.

TheInvestigator Wed 06-Mar-19 11:44:03

WinterHeatWave, some very remote places do not have taxis or taxis from the closest town/city will not go there.

And what's wrong with driving in Malaysia or south Africa. I was born in South Africa, and we never had problems driving. Lived in Malaysia for 4 months and no problems driving...

hellsbellsmelons Wed 06-Mar-19 11:46:21

You'll be amazed how easy it is to drive on the other side of the road.
But if you are really anxious then I'm not sure it's the best idea.
Could you go on a holiday before starting the job and see how you get on.
Just head to Europe. Hire a car and do some driving.
Don't do it in your own car.
The steering wheel needs to be on the other side!

user1471592953 Wed 06-Mar-19 11:46:27

If the two jobs are broadly equivalent but the driving abroad makes you nervous, you’re not unreasonable to turn that job down.

If the driving job pays you eg loads more or has significant other benefits then what would it take for you to be happy with the driving? Can you take a few pointer ‘lessons’ with an instructor to increase your confidence?

Remember if the company has offered you the job, they want you - so you have some negotiating power. There may be other arrangements you can secure to make the prospect of driving abroad less worrying / eg borrrowing a company car that is automatic so you don’t have to worry about gear changes abroad.

autrejour Wed 06-Mar-19 11:47:05

Thank you for the replies. Yes, it will be a hire car. I am usually not bad in UK but the idea of driving on the other side of the road for some reason terrifies me. I'm usually bad in big cities where I have never been before and need to change lanes as not sure where I'm going.

Miffymeow Wed 06-Mar-19 11:48:01

If you are not comfortable then don't do it. Depending on the area in europe, drivers tend to have different mannerisms too, and slightly different style roads like no cats eyes, etc.

Only do what you are comfortable with, no job is worth being stressed out all the time.

If you really want the job then you could go over to the location for the weekend and try out driving around with someone you trust? See how you feel?

Mmmhmmm Wed 06-Mar-19 11:48:15

Is this a job you applied for or did the company approach you? I'd find it very odd if you applied for it knowing the requirements.

Bumblebeezy Wed 06-Mar-19 11:48:17

We moved to Germany last year and I had huge anxiety about driving- it genuinely terrified me. I lost sleep over it the night before I had to go and pick up my car and felt utterly sick!

It honestly does not take long to get into the swing of it though. I would imagine you'd feel pretty comfortable fairly quickly so I wouldn't turn down a great job just because of this.

BlueSkiesLies Wed 06-Mar-19 11:48:29

Of course taxis are possible!

+1 for this. Or if regular taxis are not possible, it will be possible to have a car+driver for the trip duration.

anniehm Wed 06-Mar-19 11:50:40

If it's an amazing job don't let it stop you - you will learn. If there's other reasons then maybe it's a good excuse

ResistanceIsNecessary Wed 06-Mar-19 11:52:18

Do it, do it, do it!!

We have family in Spain so go over regularly. It took me over 10 years before I dared try driving a LHD car. First time was a 5 minute pootle on a very quiet side street with DH talking me through what to do. Second time was also with DH and was a very quick trip to the local shop - again very quiet roads. Third time I went off on my own and was a nervous wreck but did it. After that it became quite normal and I love driving over there now because it gives me so much more freedom.

It's just like learning to drive - each time you do it you become more confident. The weirdest thing is getting used to everything being on the 'wrong side', but you do become accustomed - and then come back to the UK and go to change gear and end up opening a window instead!!

Most people worry about drifting onto the wrong side of the road but the trick is to use a car that's set out correctly for the road position because it's a natural reminder IYSWIM?

My only regret is not getting on with it sooner! I'm quite happy now on motorways, in busy towns, roundabouts - feel the fear and do it anyway!

Jamhandprints Wed 06-Mar-19 11:52:26

When the steering wheel, gears and everything are on the other side it just feels normal to drive on the other side. But you could ask the company to pay for a driving lesson in one of the locations, so you can gain some confidence. Its worth asking! :-)

DarlingNikita Wed 06-Mar-19 11:53:34

it will be possible to have a car+driver for the trip duration.

Really? confused

Jaxhog Wed 06-Mar-19 11:54:25

For me, it would depend on which country it is. I've driven in France, USA and Canada, without a problem. And, yes, it is much easier driving a car configured for that side of the road.

But there are some countries I wouldn't want to drive in, especially on my own.

AuntieOxident Wed 06-Mar-19 11:56:51

Actually I find it slightly easier driving my own car in Europe than a hire car, although I'm fine with both. It's just a question if practice.
France is absolutely fine for longer journeys and rural areas, slightly more difficult in towns, of course. French motorways are generally a breeze, except in August.grin.
I've also done quite a bit of driving through Spain (north to south and back) , and Portugal (no problems at all) . The only places I'm less keen on are Italy (Italian male drivers seem to live just to overtake, but motorways are fine) and German no-limit motorways. But I expect the latter can be avoided.
Specify you want sat-nav for the hire cars. Takes a lot of the anxiety away.

ArialAnna Wed 06-Mar-19 11:57:29

If you are driving from the airport to a remote location then hopefully you wouldn't need to drive through any city centres? I'm also not a confident driver but I don't find driving abroad too bad. I always stay in hotels on the outskirts of town tho so I can avoid stessful town centre driving.

Wallsbangers Wed 06-Mar-19 12:00:05

It's much easier in a hire car because everything is already on the wrong side! You get used to it very quickly. Go for it!

MargoLovebutter Wed 06-Mar-19 12:04:40

I think it would be a real shame to turn down a great job because you are nervous about driving abroad. Why not think of it as a great opportunity to become more confident on roads abroad. Ask for a refresher course driving abroad - I can't believe such a thing doesn't exist.

Also, the cars you have will have sat navs in them, so you don't have to worry about getting lost or taking the wrong turning!

I've driven all over Europe - almost every country - and the great thing is that it is usually just like driving in the UK, except you are on the other side of the road. If you are in locally hired car, that will mean you are also in the correct road position too, rather than making the best of it in a UK car. If you are worried about changing gear with the other hand, then request an automatic.

ReanimatedSGB Wed 06-Mar-19 12:09:11

It's not unreasonable to turn down a job if one of the requirements is something you are not willing or able to do. only you can decide whether there are enough positives about this job to make it worth putting in effort to overcome your fear of driving, or whether the other one is a better bet anyway.

MatildaTheCat Wed 06-Mar-19 12:10:42

I would suggest taking a holiday in Europe before starting the role and driving a hire car at every opportunity when you are there. It would soon become second nature.

Is that possible?

letallthechildrenboogie Wed 06-Mar-19 12:14:10

I hadn't driven in Europe before and was very nervous, but actually found it really easy. The roads are often much quieter and it's all a lot less stressful. Good luck!

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