Before being a driver I always aspired how great it would be to roll a 4 wheeler on these shiny roads of Oman. My dream came through when I passed the road test on the third attempt with flying colours. Bismillah, what a feeling of emancipation.
I come from a city where you get public transport for 18 hours a day, however in Oman the scenario is quite different. Without a driving licence in Oman, life is cut short, as public transport is almost non-existent. However recently the municipality has started Mawsalat Bus Service from Ruwi to Mubaila and back. However most folks still rely greatly on their personal vehicle as their only reliable mode of transport.
So for my future fellow-mates and future inhabitants of this great city, I have sat down today to pen down my experience of learning to drive in Muscat. I will try to describe and enunciate as much as possible, but as rules and regulations often change in Oman, so I would request new drivers to consult a professional trainer before taking any decisions.
I have often travelled miles on road, but this shortest and the most tense road trip was worth mentioning as it was the only one so far with an Arabic cop sitting beside me. As I look back now I can still feel the sense of adrenaline that rushed through my veins when he said "Start the car..lets hit the roads".
Step 1. Eye Test/Signal Test: Go to the nearby Royal Oman Police driver License department. Currently two are there. One in Al Khoudh another in Al Qurm. Get hold of a learners book for which you will need two passport size photographs with blue background and undergo an eye test. Also mug up the road signs then and there and give the signal test. These two tests are easier to pass, just take a day off for these two. Even you can go alone to the ROP license department and take these tests. All you need as paperwork is a valid civil id.
Step 2. Drum Test: