How to be a good car passenger: 7 Dos & Don'ts to remember

Updated Apr 20, 2019 | Same topic: Let's Drive Smart!

The behavior of a car passenger can positively or negatively affect the whole trip.

Many people would love to be the passenger rather than be the driver when riding in a car. However many passengers are not aware of how they should behave or portray the role really effectively.

You might be surprised to find out that you are capable or guilty of doing things that can be bad for the driver. Also one of the reasons why passengers are unaware of their annoying behavior is because no one dares to call it out, not even the driver.

Here in the Philippines, it is part of our culture to keep mum or let things slip away because it’s we are too shy or timid about discussing specific topics or behavior with other people because we have this mindset that we are bound to hurt their feelings.

Types of Passengers in a Car!

However, if we keep on ignoring bad passenger behavior, they will always think that they are right because nobody told them about it. That is why in this article, aims to educate the passengers about the proper passenger etiquette or behavior and make your journey with the driver a pleasant experience.

1. Be the best driver's assistant 

A good passenger helps the driver by guiding him through challenging scenarios. It would help if you always were on the lookout for things that the driver may not be able to see or notice right away. Helping him park on tight spots, reminding him of a reckless driver behind or assisting him by preparing the toll fees will be much appreciated.

You can also help the driver when it comes to road navigation in the absence of a GPS by reading the map and going out of the car to ask directions from the locals

help driver to search route

Be the best car assistant driver by reading the map or going out to ask for directions

2. Do not distract the driver

You have to keep in mind that not all drivers are great at multitasking. Some of them can only focus on one task at a time. You are doing your driver a massive favor by keeping your voice down or using an earphone while using your smartphone.

Your driver might get distracted upon listening to your conversation. It is best not to take in calls while you are on the road unless its really a matter of life and death. However, you can start returning your missed calls once you have reached your destination

do not distract driver

Make sure that the driver keeps his focus on the road at all times by avoiding distracting them while driving

3. Be a calm passenger

It is understandable when passengers get scared on the road especially if the driver is on a tight spot. When you happen to be in this position, the rule of thumb is: do not ever show panic by shouting or raising your voice due to fear. Because this kind of behavior can cause the driver to panic and lose focus.

Overreacting in difficult situations won’t help the driver; thus it can make things worse, so do everyone a favor by learning how to control your emotions

panicky passenger

Do not scare the driver by being too nervous because there is a big chance that the driver might panic and cause an accident

>>> Related post: 10 types of people in the car during a road trip

4. Avoid playing the role of a backseat driver

Did you know that many Filipino passengers are not aware that they have been backseat drivers at some point in their lives? Some people think that it is okay to be a backseat driver especially if you know the driver too well. However, in reality, you are bound to piss off the driver and make him lose focus on the road.

Unless you have been a driver yourself, you will never realize how annoying it can get when your passengers love to give unsolicited feedback about your driving skills. It is okay to provide comments but telling the driver what to do is a different story

backseat driver

It is better to keep quiet rather than make unnecessary comments that may cause the driver to lose his patience

5. A sensitive passenger

Some passengers fall behind in this category, and most drivers keep mum about insensitive people. If you want to make a lasting impression with the driver or car owner, then you should also be sensitive enough to offer to shoulder a portion of the expenses.

Paying toll fee

Ask to share the toll fee, fuel cost or parking fees with the drivers

Always remember that it is not fair for the driver to shoulder everything from fuel costs, toll fees and parking fees if you are sharing a ride with the driver almost every day. Please do not wait for the driver to ask for your share; it is best to be proactive and initiate paying your share at all times.

6. The conscious passenger

Most drivers treat their cars like it is their second home that is why they make sure that it is well taken care of. Grand gestures are not expected, but if you are one of its usual passengers, then it won’t hurt to show a little bit of concern to the car.

eat inside car

Make sure not to spill food or drinks inside the car

Make sure that the vehicle is litter free, by not spilling food or drinks or by being aware of your surroundings to make sure that the car does not sustain any damage, dents or scratches.

>>> Check out more useful tips and advice for smart driving.