How to stick within the speed limit

Lesson Type
Last updated: 12 Nov 2019

Everyone’s got something that’s certain to make them drive a little faster than normal. For some people it’s a certain song, others rush to get to the gym (lunatics), and some people find their accelerator-foot getting heavy when they’re in a bad mood.

That’s not to say that speeding is okay, quite the opposite in fact. We want to make sure that you stay safe on the road, and sticking to the speed limit is a massive part of that. The incredibly quiet and comfy cars of today do a great job of disguising just how fast you’re travelling, but there are things you can do to make sure that you stay within the limit at all times.

We’ve put together 10 handy tips to help you to avoid slipping over the speed limit. See how many you can use during one of your driving lessons.

1) Watch your speedometer When you’re focussed on driving by-the-book and your instructor is watching your every move, it can be easy to focus on what’s outside of the car and totally forget to check your speed. Make sure you glance down at it once in a while, especially when you leave high speed roads.

2) Be a sign-spotter Before your test, try and make sure that you’re certain of the speed limit of all the roads around your local test centre. If you drive on an unfamiliar road, be sure to keep an eye out for speed limit signs, particularly near junctions.

3) Lamp posts are hints Assume that the presence of lamp posts means a 30mph limit unless you know otherwise. Some areas with lamp posts have a 20mph limit, so keep an eye out for those signs!

4) It’s a limit, not a requirement Speed limits are not a target; there’s no need to go hurtling around country roads at 60mph just because it’s not illegal. Drive at a sensible speed and stay safe.

5) Sometimes, 20mph is more than enough Take it easy around schools, playing fields or residential areas where kids might be playing. If you’re in a place where a child could dart out in front of you, stick to 20mph.

6) Use your gears Trying to avoid going higher than 3rd gear in 30mph zones, it’ll make it a bit easier to avoid accidentally creeping over the limit.

7) Why do you speed? Understand what it is that makes you drive over the speed limit and try to address it. Always in a rush? Leave earlier. Bad moods? Keep a CD of your favourite songs in the car.

8) Focus A good drive can be really relaxing, but that’s no excuse to let your concentration lapse. Keep an eye on the speedo, your surroundings and the traffic around you. Everything else can wait.

9) Always slow down for villages Whenever you enter a village, slow down. It’s a simple one, but no less important.

10) Enjoy yourself Driving is fun, why ruin that by rushing around and stressing yourself out? Give yourself plenty of time to get wherever you’re going and just enjoy the ride.

Image courtesy of dsagovuk @ Flickr via Crown Copyright.