Empty Bottle on a Car Roof - What It Means and What to Do if You See It

Empty Bottle on a Car Roof - What It Means and What to Do if You See It

Have you ever seen a water bottle sitting on the top of a parked car? There are a couple of meanings behind it, and one of them is concerning.

An empty bottle on the roof of a car might seem strange, but it carries a specific meaning for certain people and can signify a significant opportunity. Initially, you might think the driver has an issue related to fluids, such as running out of fuel or an overheated engine. However, the true meaning is quite different and deliberate. 

Interestingly, there is another possible reason for a water bottle on a car, which involves a trick used by thieves, although this isn't the case here. 

The practice of placing a water bottle on a car dates back to the 1950s in Argentina, where placing an empty bottle on a car roof indicated that the owner intended to sell the vehicle. Originally, this method helped avoid certain taxes imposed by the government, but it has since become a local tradition, with many Argentinians continuing to use this technique to signal a car for sale.

Even though the practice of placing a water bottle on a car roof to indicate that is for sale began in Argentina, similar methods have been adopted in countries where displaying "for sale" signs in car windows is prohibited. 

For example, in Spain, many regions have local laws that forbid such signs on public roads to prevent the streets from becoming informal car lots. Similarly, in parts of the UK, Australia, and certain US cities, local laws restrict the use of "for sale" signs in vehicles parked on public streets. This ensures that public areas are not misused for private sales.

In this case, where the water bottle is placed deliberately on the car, there is nothing to worry about. However, if you find a water bottle on your car and you didn't put it there, it could be a trick used by thieves to get you out of your vehicle. While you're distracted removing the obstruction, they may try to steal your car. If you see anything unusual on your car, like a t-shirt on your windscreen wipers, get in your car and drive to the nearest safe place before removing it. If possible, head to a police station where you can safely take it off.