Are you venturing across the ocean to spend time in the United Kingdom? Are you going to rent a car and drive around the country? Then here are a few helpful driving tips.
• GPS – If possible I would highly recommend renting a GPS, it will save you a lot of headaches if you plan on driving any distance.
• Road Map – If you can't get a GPS buy a good detailed road map. It`s nice to have in advance to mark off all the routes you`re willing to travel on.
• Driving on the left – Be careful on turns, remember that a left hand turn is into the closest lane & a right hand turn into the furthest lane. If you get that part down, it gets easier. Also when you`re driving in remote areas, remind yourself to drive on the left. When a car does show up, out of habit, you tend to think they or you are on the wrong side of the road.
• Roundabout's – These can be very confusing. Getting into them & out of them isn't too bad but knowing which way to go is another story. Be careful, watch when entering a roundabout that you are in the correct lane & most roundabouts they don't use compass directions (N, S, E & W) they instead use the names of towns. These towns can be the next closest town or a town many miles away. Study your route before you go to make sure you know what towns you want to head towards.
• Speed Limits – The national speed limit is not on the signs. When you see a round white sign with a black hash-mark on it then you know you can drive the national speed limit. Check UK websites before going, but the national speed limit on dual carriage roads (expressways) is 70mph on all other highways it's 60mph. There's not a lot of notice for the change in speed limits so pay attention. Many towns are only 20mph or 30mph so you have to slow down quickly. There are speed cameras all over the country so be careful to drive the speed limit.
• Seat belts – In the UK seat belts are mandatory so make sure you wear one all the time. There are fines if you are caught without one on.
• Big Cities – If you drive into London, there's a congestion charge of ₤8 just for driving into the city. Plus parking in London is very expensive if you can even find a spot to park. Many times it's easiest to park on the edge of the city & either take a bus into town or walk.
A special thanks to Bill for helping me with these great driving tips!
If you want to know more tips on driving abroad, check out Isabelle`s Travel Guide.