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Driving can both be a pleasurable and stressful thing to do, but the latter rings true in the case of traffic congestion. Rush hours, collisions, and ill-timed road works are just some of the most notorious reasons why cars get caught in traffic, and the mismanagement that ensures in those situations just make things worse for drivers. Large cities, where many people congregate for work and education, are often the most terribly-congested areas in the world – it goes without saying that the large concentration of cars in those places is a reflection of higher income and greater commuting demands. Knowing how traffic congestion goes in different parts of the world may prove to be helpful to you, especially if you’re the well-traveled type who’s looking to avoid traffic-related inconveniences. Here’s a list of five cities across the world that are known to have the worst traffic congestion around.

Rank 5: Chongqing, China

China’s burgeoning population makes traffic congestion a natural consequence, which is why the central megalopolis of Chongqing figures in this list of worst traffic cities. Towering skyscrapers characterize Chongqing’s urban landscape, which indicates that it’s definitely a place where heavy commercial activity resides. Rivers dominate the whole of Chongqing, and while bridges are pivotal to keeping several of its parts connected, they are also infamous for being typical scenes of heavy traffic, especially during rush hour. For such a large Chinese city, and a continuously-expansion one at that, Chongqing may just as well be a place to avoid in your travel plans as long as deadly traffic jams are concerned.

Rank 4: Mexico City, Mexico

As the site of the central government of Mexico, Mexico City is expectedly congested in all of its road arteries, and that owes to its valley-like landscape with roads that inadequately handles a growing population of around 22 million people. Pollution is a notorious problem in Mexico City, what with the heavy reliance on cars people have there. Despite the existence of a rather-expansive metro system that straddles across multiple parts of Mexico City, travelling within the city by car takes almost one hour from one point to another during rush hours for journeys that typically takes just 30 minutes. Therefore, if you have no other special plans to visit Mexico City, try your best to steer clear of that city because it is definitely top on the worst traffic cities list.

Rank 3: St. Petersburg, Russia

Home to stunning palaces and an array of unique experiences characteristic of Russian culture, St. Petersburg incidentally has one of the world’s worst traffic cities congestion cases. Understandably, St. Petersburg’s heavily-urbanized landscape, as well as being a tourist draw, accounts for the influx of people leaving there – at five million people, the city has all the bragging rights to prove its further potential to growth. But now, the reality is that traffic congestion has constantly plagued the potential of St. Petersburg to reach greater heights. Rush hours in St. Petersburg typically feature a 29-minute increase during rush hour to the usually-30-minute journeys. Being stuck in traffic for that long can certainly frustrate workers who are already running late for their multiple appointments.

Rank 2: Moscow, Russia

If you’ve yet to wonder at this point why Moscow, Russia’s governmental seat, is currently experiencing terribly backbreaking scenes of traffic congestion despite the existence of an extensive metro system, then you’re certainly not alone. Just like in St. Petersburg, Moscow’s terrible traffic situation shows that many Russians are highly reliant on their cars. You may pinpoint that to the relative absence of car ownership restrictions or failure to convince more people to sacrifice their individuality for transport efficiency by using the metro system, which by the way is known for the grandiose design of several stations. But for sure, travelling within Russia for journeys typically taking just 30 minutes can delay you for a further 31 minutes during rush hours. Indeed, you may well expect nothing but chaos in many of Moscow’s roads. Make sure to put Moscow in your worst traffic cities list.

Rank 1: Istanbul, Turkey

Again, Istanbul is another European city in this list that is well-served by a comprehensive network of metro lines throughout its entirety. Nonetheless, much of Istanbul’s network of roads are relentlessly clogged with several cars – it’s possible that a good number of them come from the city’s sleeper outskirts, but the fact that a poor traffic management system is in place makes the city quite a waste for drivers. Being stuck on gridlock for an average of 125 hours yearly is by no means a joke, which is why when travelling to Istanbul isn’t totally necessary, then you’d want to consider that city’s severe traffic problems as a disadvantage for visiting it at all.