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Advice For Irish Drivers Going To Britain Advice For Irish Drivers Going To Britain


Advice For Irish Drivers Going To Britain

Published 17th August 2023Read Time 3 min

Whether you’re planning a long weekend with a trip over by ferry, or you’re looking to journey on the roads from Land’s End to John O’Groats, driving in Britain

Don’t confuse the speed limits

You don’t want to be in a situation where you’re driving along and get pulled over by police for speeding. Without having to start making calculations, UK speed limits are as follows:

  • Towns and built-up areas – 48km / 30mph
  • Single carriageways – 96km / 60mph
  • Dual carriageways – 112km / 70mph
  • Motorways – 112km / 70mph

Also, keep an eye out for specific speed limits. For example, many streets in Scotland will have 32 km/20mph limits in place, while a lot of “bendy'” country roads and carriageways carry an 80mkh/50mph limit.

Make sure your license is valid

One of the confusions post-Brexit for motorists around the legality and rules for Irish drivers on British roads. This is a topic we’ve discussed previously on the blog and our social channels, but if you’re not quite sure what the rules are, the Department of Transport clearly states the rules as such (source):

“All holders of an Irish licence driving in the UK, whether they are UK residents or visiting there, do not need to take any action, as the UK has agreed that all licences held by a driver from any EU Member State continues to be valid for driving in the UK.”

Simply put, you don’t have to get any specific clearance or special documents if you’re going to be driving in the UK.

What if I’m an AA member driving in Britain?

AA Ireland members driving in the UK will be covered for a breakdown based on their policy. We recommend reading over your policy booklet for a complete overview of what is covered, but remember that:

  • AA membership covers YOU and not the car
  • AA membership covers ANY vehicle you’re in, even if you’re not the driver
  • If you do break down in NI or GB, you can call +353 1 6497460 for assistance

For those driving to the UK and further afield

If you’re planning a car holiday which will see you travelling through GB and onwards to mainland Europe, note that your AA membership will not cover breakdowns. In such cases, we highly recommend researching your options for European Breakdown Cover, which has access to a round-the-clock English-speaking helpline and cover for your whole trip.

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