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Belfast, United Kingdom

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Travel Infomation Description

Road Conditions and Safety: Road conditions in the United Kingdom can differ significantly from those in the United States.

  • In contrast to the United States, UK traffic drives on the left. Read the Highway Code before driving.
  • Emergency call boxes (orange telephone booths with ?SOS? printed on them) are found at half-mile intervals along motorways. White and blue poles point in the direction of the nearest call box. Call boxes dial directly to a motorway center. Use these phones rather than a personal cell phone, because motorway center personnel will immediately know your exact location.
  • Generally, pedestrians do not have the right of way and should not expect vehicles to stop for them.

Many U.S. citizen pedestrians are injured, some fatally, every year in the United Kingdom, because they forget that oncoming traffic approaches from the opposite direction than in the United States. Exercise extra care when crossing streets; remain alert and look both ways before stepping into the street.

Traffic Laws: 

  • UK penalties for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs are strict and often result in prison sentences.
  • Using a hand-held cell phone or similar device while driving is illegal in the United Kingdom. Only hands-free phones may be used. You will be fined, or in the case of an accident, arrested and serve time in prison.
  • The speed limit on highways/motorways in the United Kingdom is 70 mph, or lower when posted.
  • You will be detained and arrested if you cannot provide a UK address to receive a subpoena or are about to depart the United Kingdom and have to be brought to court quickly for a motoring offense.
  • In Central London, a congestion charge is levied on all drivers who pass through the congestion zone. You will be fined or arrested if you do not pay the charge. See Transport for London for more information about driving in London.

Public Transportation: Public transport in the United Kingdom is extensive.

  • Information on disruptions to London transportation services can be found on the Transport for London website.
  • Information about the status of National Rail Services can be found on the National Rail Enquiries website.
  • Bus and train service information in Northern Ireland can be found on the Translink website.
  • Bus and train service information in Scotland can be found on the Traveline Scotland website.

See our Road Safety page for more information. For specific information concerning UK driving permits, vehicle inspection, road tax, and mandatory insurance, refer to the UK Department for Transport website or the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency website.

Aviation Safety Oversight: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of the United Kingdom?s Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of United Kingdom?s air carrier operations. Further information may be found on the FAA?s safety assessment page.

Maritime Travel: Mariners planning travel to the United Kingdom should also check for U.S. maritime advisories and alerts at www.marad.dot.gov/msci. Information may also be posted to the U.S. Coast Guard homeport website and the NGA broadcast warnings website (select ?broadcast warnings?).

Belfast, United Kingdom
Belfast, United Kingdom
Belfast, United Kingdom
Belfast, United Kingdom

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