UK Driving Advice

UK Driving Advice

If you're driving in the UK for the first time it could be a little daunting, so we have compiled this document as basic guideline for you and help you enjoy driving in the UK by knowing what to expect.

The Basic Rules
  • Drive on the left-hand side of the road.
  • When approaching a roundabout, give priority to traffic approaching from the right, unless otherwise indicated.
  • You must always stop at a red traffic light.
  • At a junction there's no general priority rule - priority is marked at most junctions.
  • All traffic signals and road signs must be obeyed.
  • All vehicles must give way to emergency services vehicles.
  • The use of a car horn is not permitted in built-up areas from 23:30 to 07:00 hours.
  • Do not drive in bus lanes during restricted hours. See signs by the side of the road for times.
  • It's illegal to use a mobile phone when driving. If you need to make a call, find a safe place to stop first.
  • Seat belts must be worn by the driver and front seat passenger. Where rear seat belts have been fitted, they must also be worn.

On Motorways or multiple lane roads:

  • Always pass (overtake) on the outside (right) lane.
  • Do not block the middle lane if the inside lane is clear.
  • UK Service stations usually have a maximum 2-hour time limit on how long you can stay without incurring a fine. Please the check signs on entry to avoid getting any fines!
Red & yellow lines

Single, double yellow and red lines along the edge of the road are used to show where you can and cannot park.

  • Single yellow lines: there are restrictions on parking at certain times. You can pull over on a single yellow line to let a passenger in or out of the car, but the driver mustn't get out. Check the signs on the road to find out parking restriction times.
  • Double yellow lines: You cannot park at any time.
  • Single red lines: You cannot park or STOP at certain times
  • Double red lines: You cannot park or STOP at any time.
Speed Limits

Different speed limits apply depending on the type of road and the vehicle you're driving. You must not exceed the maximum speed limit set for the road and your vehicle.

Built-up areasSingle CarriagewayDual CarriagewayMotorways
Cars and motorcycles 30mph
(48kph)
60mph
(96kph)
70mph
(112kph)
70mph
(112kph)
Other Vehicles (Including Motorhomes) 30mph
(48kph)
50mph
(81kph)
60mph
(96kph)
60mph
(96kph)

Remember: The speed limit is the absolute maximum and does not mean it is safe to drive at that speed irrespective of conditions. Driving at speeds too fast for the road and traffic conditions can be dangerous.

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*information courtesy of www.visitbritain.com