Bristol supposedly has the worst congestion of any place in the UK. Here are some tips for surviving.

Lyndon's law of driving states "Anyone who thinks they are a good driver usually isn't".

Driving Position

The recommended position for the hands on the steering wheel in the UK is "ten minutes to two o'clock". In Bristol, the left hand should be at the 10 o'clock position and the right hand hovering over the horn. You will get cut up, badly and you will need to use your horn.

Traffic Conditions

In moderate-heavy traffic people will usually let you merge. If someone leaves a reasonable gap in front of them for braking this is an opportunity to undertake and move into the space.

Use your mirrors like a hawk because someone will be moving into your lane without indicating or even looking.


In Clifton particularly, pedestrians will cross the road only a few metres from a zebra crossing.

In Cotham and the areas around university you will find pedestrians walking in the road without looking to see if there are any cars approaching. And they won't get out of the way when they see you.

Watch out for pedestrians loitering next to zebra crossings but not actually wishing to cross the road.


Taxis will weave into bus lanes and use them to undertake you, even if traffic is light and you are driving at the speed limit.

Beware taxis emerging from the rank at NatWest by the Clifton Triangle crossing 2 lanes of traffic to turn right.

Basically, taxis seem to be allowed to do anything, so Bristol is a great place if you are a taxi driver.


If you drive at 20 in a 20 mph zone there will be a car behind you wanting to go 30. If you drive 30 in a 30 mph zone then you'll find other drivers still going 20 because they didn't realise they'd left the 20 mph zone.

Crash Zones

When joining the A370 into town before Plimsoll Bridge you have to turn your head almost 180 degrees to see oncoming traffic and there is very little road to judge speeds before you pull out. Most cars on the A370 don't slow down for the junction. Furthermore, while queueing, it is common for the car in front to hesitate resulting in getting rear ended.

When traffic starts to build up at the junction between Whiteladies Road, Tyndalls Park Road and St Pauls Road, drivers can try to cross the junction without realising the lights have changed.

Elite Driving Tips

(These may not be Bristol specific)