Community Matters: Cycling Rules In Hungary

  • 4 Oct 2019 11:31 AM
Community Matters: Cycling Rules In Hungary
Recently a member of the local expat community asked about what laws apply to riding a bike on the pavement in Hungary. Here below are a few of the helpful hints offered via XpatLoop's group on Facebook from Xpats in the loop.

Christopher Long explains:  
I ask because I won't cycle on certain major roads where there isn't a bike lane. And I cycle on those with them with trepidation.

On the sidewalk/pavement I'd like to know if I do in fact have a right of way or not. I meet grumpy pedestrians who seem to think that bikes aren't allowed at all. Just want to be sure.

Kimberley Pearson Marcali: 
People seem to do as they please here! Id say as long as your curtious to pedestrians then unless a cop stops you. Maybe next time you see an officer ask them!

Denes Varga: 
Not really, riding on the footpath is not allowed, except kids younger than 12 yrs. Cycling on the foot path only allowed, if the carriageway for some reason is not suitable for cycling, max seed 10 km/h.

If you are using a pedestrian crossing to get to the another side of the road, you are supposed to push the cycle, not to ride. So, there are the rules, but not every police officer is keen on them, I guess.

Alexander Drijver: 
The official rule is NO - unless it is unsafe to cycle on the road (which is not well defined). Even if the road has a "no cycling" sign it ia still not allowed to cycle on the pavement (you should walk and push your bike).

The exception os children under 12 as by law they are not allowed to cycle on the road. In all cases where cycling might be allowed the max speed limit is 10 km/h.

About using the bell - my experience is only that it seems to make people jump :-) - it is also somehow impersonal. A polite "elnézést" as you approach works just as effectively and is "softer" and means you are not just another annoying ping! Just my 2 cents.

Joe Miano: 
The bike path belongs to cyclists so ring softly on the bike paths and people will move out of the way. they know they ought not walk on bike paths. The sidewalk belongs to walkers so defer to them.

If there are only ones or twos walking, ride slowly around them. If the sidewalk has a lot of foot traffic, dismount and push your bike past the congestion. Don't ring your bell on the sidewalk.

In practise a lot of people do cycle on the pavement (as do I sometimes). In these cases I think we have to remember that the pavement is there for the use and safety of pedestrians.

Ride slowly with consideration, give people a wide berth, don't ring you bell etc ... so the grumpy pedestrians are within their rights but if you are polite and considerate they will be forgiving.

If you are stopped by police on the sidewalk, state that you felt the road was unsafe for cycling. I cycle on sidewalks in certain instances for precisely that reason.

 

Click here to read more about the cycling rules in Hungary
 

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Notes:

XpatLoop readers include both valuable expats and high-level locals in decision making positions. We refer to this inclusive and cosmopolitan group of internationally-minded folks as the Xpat Community.

We believe that the advice given above, and so this Community Matters content, is given in good faith and is accurate at the time of publication - however it's always wise to consider that changes do happen in Hungary, as everywhere. 

This content is intended to support the communiy at large, as well as the person asking the question, based on publicly viewable posts on XpatLoop's open group on Facebook. So of course the opinions above do not necessarily represent the views of XpatLoop.com or the publisher.

Please note that readers need to use common sense when acting on any advice provided online. Xpatloop.com (and publisher) can not be held liable in any way related to advice here from Facebook user posts nor elsewhere on any of our social media platforms.

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MTI Photo: Marjai János 

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