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Driving in the UK 在英國駕駛

在英國駕駛 There are quite a lot of differences between Taiwan’s and the UK’s roads. The most obvious difference is that in the UK people drive on the left of the road. Secondly the are lots of roundabouts in the UK, sometimes with many lanes, often it’s important to get in the correct lane before you enter the roundabout (in American English they call a roundabout a rotary). Also on a positive note there are lots less annoying scooters around.

Roundabouts in Warrington

Roundabouts in Warrington, near Gemini Retail Park

Minor differences are that most distances are quoted in miles (8/5 of a kilometer), speed limits are in miles per hour (mph) but that’s not difficult to deal with since all cars have an mph readout in the car. Also it’s not very often people press their car horn. Only rarely do you hear someone remind a fellow driver that the red light has changed to green already.

A Taiwanese drivers licence cannot be swapped directly for a UK one unfortunately. When you leave Taiwan you can get an international licence which can be used for quite a long time (my wife’s had 5 years on it) but for cheaper insurance it’s best to pass the UK test. Also doing the lessons will get you more used to the UK roads where you live and keeping to the left. Everything you need to know can be found at the government website and the DVLA website.

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There are lots of places to buy cars around the UK, most towns have one or several areas with groupings of major name garages, usually on an “A” road, out of town. Alongside the main dealers you will find private non-chain garages, sometimes offering better cheaper deals but without the confidence you get from buying from a main dealer. Nearly all the brands you can buy in Taiwan are available here in the UK; Honda, Ford, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Toyota, Lexus, Chrysler. Also you will find a lot more European cars of course! From my experience it’s cheaper to buy good used cars here in the UK. If you know enough about cars you can buy one privately online through eBay or AutoTrader. With newer cars you can buy a guarantee from the AA or RAC, who also offer breakdown rescue sevices like the AAA in the USA.

Happy motoring!

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