Expatriates bemoan Asian traffic

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According to a recent study, expats in Asian cities such as Tokyo and Singapore have cited traffic as their biggest annoyance, with many encountering highly-congested roads on a day-to-day basis.

The report was conducted by a leading human resources company, Orc Worldwide, their executive vice president, Siobhan Cummins told The Telegraph: "Driving through congestion is a problem in many cities around the world, and reasons can, of course, vary from place to place. In Asia however, where many cities are developing, infrastructure is often just too basic to cope with the increasing traffic levels."

The report surveyed expats in Bangkok, Bangalore, Delhi, Istanbul, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Seoul, Taipei and Tokyo. Miss Cummins added that “Expats who have moved to these countries can often find this incredibly stressful because they have become used to Western standards which no longer apply.”

The different countries had a number of varying factors that caused the road-stress. Despite Japan’s well maintained roads many expats begrudged long drives from housing in the suburbs to work in the city. Pollution was a big factor in some places, in Shanghai for example, 72 percent of expats saw pollution as the biggest problem, and 63 percent traffic. In Mumbai, 88 percent of expats saw traffic as the biggest problem, but this was very closely followed by pollution. Pollution is clearly connected to traffic problems, and makes life abroad often very difficult for expats with health problems, or those who worry about the health of their children”, said Cummins.

Some foreign employers recognise the stress with driving on new roads and offer their expat employees a driver, however this differs from nation to nation. In Bangalore 61.5 percent of expat employees were given drivers but in Singapore this figure is just 10.3 percent.