My favorite is to look for the newest car, because I know I can intimidate them into letting me in. Yours???
I just punch it early, so I’m at highway speed when it’s time to merge. If the car in front of me seems, as is often the case, unaware that they’re getting on a freeway, I’ll try to get over to the second driving lane and go around 'em.
I do what the highway patrol recommends. Get up to 55 MPH by the time you reach the end of the ramp. My left hand turn signal is on the entire time and I always make sure to let one car in the slow lane pass me. After that, people are welcome to trade paint with my Swedish armor plated snow mobile.
I fade back on the first part of the on ramp, then accelerate to interstate speed (70 mph) by the end. That way I have room to merge with traffic, slide to the left lane, and blow by the SOB that was in front of me on the ramp who is still trying to merge at 50 mph.
What??? That sounds like you are stopping at the end of the ramp.
You should match your speed with the traffic, otherwise you are putting your life in danger.
The oncoming traffic can adjust to avoid you if you have a small difference in speed, however if you are travelling at, say, 10kph and they are travelling at 100kph you are putting yourself and them at risk of harm.
Sorry to sound to serious, but this is dangerous.
Well, having a few HP, I like to be going about 80 when I hit the end of the on ramp. It’s easy to slow down and merge, or just blow the doors off the jerks that won’t move over. In Orlando, you should know, only during rush hours is the traffic due to anything but rudeness, bad driving, and lousy lane discipline. So, if you live in LA, this won’t work.
I also ignore striped white lines if there is a nice space to merge NOW, and a zombie in front of me. I’m already going fast enough and I refuse to merge behind someone going 15 under. I’m not that much of a thrill seeker.
I actually move over to the middle or left lanes so other people can merge. I keep waiting for it to catch on.
Here in Sydney it’s really easy. Despite the signs saying “Keep Left Unless Overtaking” most drivers drive in the middle lane at all times. Consequently the merging lane is often empty. Of course once you are on the freeway you spend lots of time passing people on the left because they won’t pull over into the slow lane. I think Aussie drivers think there is some shame in being in the left hand lane.
Ahahahahahaha…how naive. He’s in America, my friend, where highways turn into parking lots at rush hour.
Oops. We need a red with embarassment smilie.:smack:
I slam my foot on the gas and get up to 60 in time to merge. It’s the only time to legally use all my car’s power (especially since we have an elevated freeway, so the on-ramp really is a ramp), why waste the opportunity?
Around Atlanta the GAAMM’s (Generally Accepted Merging Methodologies) seem to be evenly divided between:
- Press gas pedal to floor
- Lock neck and eyes in straight ahead position
- Use The Force to determine the exact time to careen left
- Move over at least 3 lanes before straightening wheels
- Slow to 20 MPH
- Look only left and behind, never mind what the people in front of you may be doing
- Slow down some more
- Wait for entire expressway, in both directions, to be devoid of human life
- Wait some more
- Come to a complete stop
- Wait for earthquake to move your vehicle into the traffic lane.
I’m so glad I don’t have to drive rush hour interstates anymore.
It depends. If there’s a stop sign at the end of the ramp (Frighteningly common in MA), I just look for a gap, and floor it, and try not to spin my tires too much.
Otherwise, if it’s a ramp I can accelerate on, then it’s get going to about 60 before I hit the end of the ramp, and slide in gracefully.
Man, you gotta just go for it. Get to highway speed and start going over. Those fools in the right hand lane better not be speeding, and they better not be tailgating the person in front of them.
Our on-ramps here in the mountains are pitifully short, and merging can be real interesting sometimes: you’ve sometimes got about four seconds of highway in which to merge, and if the right-hand drivers are being jerks, it gets exciting.
And there’s a section of highway between my gym and my house where the on-ramp is on the right, the exit is on the left, and there’s about an eighth of a mile and four lanes to cross in order to make it from one to the other. Thrills every minute!
Mine is very similar. I look for mini-vans. New minivans are the perfect they’re-definitely-going-to-let-me-in vehicles.
My strategy is similar to bojon and Munch, except instead of looking for a new car, I just drive an old junker with dramatic rear-end damage, and so there are very few who have less to lose than me.
Thus, most folks happliy make room for me to merge when I want to change lanes.
Fortunately, the car still drives fine, and the engine is in good shape, but the ass end looks like, well… ass.
Word. I have never been so afeer’d for my life as when I’ve been a helpless passenger in a car in Atlanta during rush hour. Terrifying experience, that.
I’m also of the get up to highway speed, look for a reasonable-sized gap, adjust your speed to match the gap, and go, unless the ramp you’re using ends in a stop sign. Back when I drove a 3-cylinder Geo Metro, I used such a ramp quite a bit, and to make matters worse, it was one where the rightmost (slowest) lane became an off-ramp within a few hundred yards. On that ramp, my strategy was wait for the biggest gap I was likely to get, hit the accelerator, wake up the hamsters, and pray real hard.