Top 10 cities with the worst traffic

Top 10 cities with the worst traffic

Traffic is a growing problem in many parts of the world, but if you’re going to these cities — pack some extra patience.

In 2004, a company TomTom launched the first personal navigation device, and the world would never be the same. Since then, they’ve sold tens of millions of such devices around the world, and as a result, have access to a trove of data about the world’s traffic. They’ve charted the world’s cities based on how bad the traffic is, based on a congestion score which shows how much extra time you need to navigate that city. A 33% score means you need 33% more time.


Worst traffic in the world

  • 10. Beijing (China) — 46%

China’s bustling capital “only” comes in at number ten, despite being the world’s second most populous city proper. Thanks to its national highways, expressways, and high-speed rail network, things aren’t worse, but even these thick veins can’t keep up with the over 21 million people who call Beijing home.

  • 9. Tainan (Taiwan) — 46%

The congestion of this Taiwan municipality grew by a whopping 10% since last year, in part due to tourism.

  • 8. Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) — 47%

Despite remaining stable since last year, Rio’s streets are still a nightmare to drive on. Rio is surrounded by mountains, and that makes traffic management even more difficult.

  • 7. Chengdu (China) — 47%

Unsurprisingly, China’s sparkling metropoles often have massive traffic problems, largely due to the fact that they weren’t designed to fit so many people.

  • 6. Istanbul (Turkey) — 49%


Despite a slight improvement from last year, the roads of Istanbul are still a chaotic drag to navigate. Traffic jams are a common sighting, as are drivers trying to improvise their way out of a jam and making it much worse.

  • 5. Bucharest (Romania) — 50%

Perhaps surprisingly, the Romanian capital of Bucharest is Europe’s most congested city. Improper city planning and an overall disregard of such problems have made driving in Bucharest worse and worse, after year.

  • Chongqing (China) — 52%

The most congested city in China (though not in Asia) is Chongqing, a municipality which was created only in 1997, but now has a population of over 18 million.

  • 3. Jakarta (Indonesia) — 58%

Everyone who’s ever been in Jakarta will tell you its streets are a nightmare. Jakarta’s business opportunities, as well as its potential to offer a higher standard of living, attract people from all over Indonesia, but that’s taking a toll on the streets.

  • 2. Bangkok (Thailand) — 61%

Asia’s most congested city is Bangkok. The city hosts 12.6 percent of the country’s population, dwarfing all other urban centers in Thailand, but also having the obvious downside of bad traffic.

  • 1. Mexico City (Mexico) — 66%

According to TomTom, the world’s most congested city is by far Mexico City. From morning to evening, the city’s streets are clumped with cars that seem to be going nowhere — and often, they really are going nowhere.

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