13 Weird car traditions around the world & stories behind them


Posted by: Joshua-Philip Okeafor

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What happens in your locality when someone buys a new car? How is it celebrated? Well, it won't get weirder than these weird car traditions around the world!

Have you ever seen or heard about certain traditions that sound absurd to your ear? They have even extended and involved cars, especially new cars.

It might sound absurd but there are things you should watch out for when you travel all over the world so that they won't look too strange to you, even if you are not the superstitious type. These 13 weird car traditions are just a fun or unusual way folks celebrate.


Wow! You just bought the ride. Now, how you gonna celebrate?

It doesn't matter if you bought one of the best new cars for a beginner driver, or bought a performance machine for experienced drivers. You will always celebrate somehow when you welcome home a new car. Let's take a look at some of the weirdest new car traditions, from place to place.

Countries and their weird car traditions

1. Europe

It's not exactly clear which part of Europe exactly. Anyway, it is strangely believed and widely accepted in parts of Europe that once you are in your new car and drive past a cemetery, you must hold your breath.

It does not matter how long this takes but you just need to follow this tradition so that the evil spirits hovering around the cemetery will not enter or possess you and lead to an accident afterward.

A scientific study of this tradition states that it is to prevent bacteria from the cemeteries being inhaled. This got you to laugh, right?


Europe is not without its own weird car traditions

2. India

The next weird car tradition can be seen in India. There is a tradition common in India that when you buy lemons, buy four, one for each wheel of your car.

This tradition is to ensure the safety of the new vehicle and prevent it from getting involved in accidents in the future.

The fact here, however, is that if you do not drive carefully, you will meet with an accident and no lemon can save you. It’s funny but the absolute truth.


In India, to celebrate new cars, buy four lemons for the four wheels

>>> Also read - Top 10 most funny-looking cars in the world

3. China

When money is being given to someone in the form of "keeping the change", it is not meant to be kept under the seat of the driver but it is very much common and accepted in China that when you put such money under the seat of the driver, it brings good luck.

This good luck helps you give out to the needy, buy what you desire from vendors on the streets, or, at times, pay a toll for the new car.

The tradition above is termed Car Coining and has its origin in China. Many people all over the world are adopting it as a car tradition for both new and old cars.


Buy a new car in China, and don't forget the local superstition

>>> Read also - Why auto brands give weird car names?

4. France

People think good wine, romance, and art are just what France is known for. However, a deeper study of them shows that in the past, friends of newly-weds would make noise outside their house, using pots and pans, until they are called in for refreshments.

Nowadays, it has taken another form which results in tying tins at the back of a car meant for the wedding. The reason for this is that neighbors who are non-tolerant of the serenade would have made with their pans and pots.

The overall reason for this is funny, weird tradition is to be invited in for refreshments. Isn't it quite amusing?


France is always elegant, but with wacky car traditions like the rest of us!

Weird car traditions around the world

Let's take a look at other weird car traditions:

5. Raising feet near railroad trucks

There is one other weird tradition in the world which cannot be traced to any origin. It states that once you are driving a new car over railroad trucks, you are to raise your feet. This is believed to have the power to bring you good luck.

Funny enough, it is said that if you do not wish to lose your love, you need to do it. You would ask me what your love life has to do with your driving.

6. Tapping on the new car's roof

Tapping on the roof of the new car after passing by the yellow traffic light is another tradition.

This tapping is a way of showing gratitude for making it through the traffic and roads without having a collision with other cars.

Some even have to kiss the tips of their fingers before tapping the roof. Surprisingly, such exists, right?

7. Scratching the new car

Another one is scratching your new car. This necessitates that when you drive around in a pristine car, you are tempting fate.

Some believe the only way to protect a new car is by doing the honors yourself by scratching it. In so doing, you are protecting it against any ugly scratch.

The smart ones amongst these believers make the scratch in a spot that cannot be easily noticed by passers-by.

8. Holding your breath through the tunnel

It is also believed that you should hold your breath when driving a new car through the tunnel.

This is believed to prevent bad luck when you do this. Some of these groups of people believe that as you hold your breath and pass through the tunnel, anything you wish will be granted.

It sounds terrible, especially for asthmatic patients who cannot hold it in for long.

9. Wishing for birth poop

Another notable one is bird poop. Does it sound irritating? Hold it in a bit. In some countries, it is not considered cool for bird droppings to fall in your new car. In some others, it is a good sign of future fortune.

Furthermore, once these bird droppings fall on Friday, the 13th, it is considered really good luck, and people are advised not to wash it off immediately.

10. Washing celebration

In Nigeria & Vietnam, when you buy a new car, friends and families expect you to “wash” the car. The meaning of this is to take them out to buy drinks or make them catch fun and rejoice on the “birth” of the new car.

The literal meaning of “washing” would have been using sponge and soap to make it clean but in the Nigerian and Vietnamese sense, “washing” a new car involves rejoicing over drinks and foods on its arrival.

11. Changing oil every 3000 miles

Right next is the changing of car oil after every journey of 3000 miles. This is not harmful as a habit, but experts believe you don't need to change the oil so often, especially if employing the advantages of synthetic oil. Some others feel conventional oil is the best for oil changes though.

12. Closing your eyes if a black cat passes

Some drivers see it as a car tradition not to see a black cat when it passes your new car by as it is considered a signal of bad luck. You should not hit it and you will be fine.

13. Avoiding your vehicle to know about your plan!

Lastly is the "Not talking about selling a car while you are sitting right in it".

In Russia, it is widely accepted that if you have bought a car and you are planning to sell it soon, you should not let it hear you say it. It is believed that the vehicle can resent you and make it begin to malfunction.

This can then result in spending heavily and wasting money on the car.

Meanwhile, take a look at these funny car commercials to brighten your day:


Did you get a kick out of these 13 weird car traditions? How do you think you will celebrate when you buy your car? Do not hesitate to write to us to share your feelings.

>>> Stay tuned with Naijauto.com and you won't miss the most interesting automotive news!

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Joshua-Philip Okeafor

Joshua-Philip Okeafor

Car buying & selling

Joshua, or KK as friends call him, is a Filmmaker, Writer and Director. A Christian, Joshua is a product of Nigeria’s foremost film school, the National Film Institute, Jos, where he majored in Writing/Directing. Joshua began his writing career at age 18 when an older brother gave him a four page outline of a children novel. Joshua intends to keep writing and directing. His screen name is sometimes Joshua Kalu Ephraim (Writing), and sometimes Joshua KK (directing).

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