Parking and waiting

  1. General advice
  2. Road use and Navigation
  3. Parking and Waiting
  4. Vulnerable Road Users
  5. Drivers and Motorcyclists
  6. Rules for Motorcyclists
  7. Pedestrians
  8. Defensive driving tips
  9. Road Test Tips
  10. Road Signs
  11. Highway Code Test
  • You MUST NOT wait or park on yellow lines during the times of operation shown on nearby time plates (or zone entry signs if in a Controlled Parking Zone).
  • Double yellow lines indicate a prohibition of waiting at any time even if there are no upright signs.
  • You MUST NOT wait or park, or stop to set down and pick up passengers, on school entrance markings when upright signs indicate a prohibition of stopping.
Cars parked underground


Use off-street parking areas, or bays marked out with white lines on the road as parking places, wherever possible. If you have to stop on the roadside :

  • do not park facing against the traffic flow.
  • stop as close as you can to the side.
  • do not stop too close to a vehicle displaying a Blue Badge: remember, the occupant may need more room to get in or out.
  • you MUST switch off the engine, headlights and fog lights.
  • you MUST apply the handbrake before leaving the vehicle.
  • you MUST ensure you do not hit anyone when you open your door. Check for cyclists or other traffic.
  • it is safer for your passengers (especially children) to get out of the vehicle on the side next to the pavement.
  • put all valuables out of sight and make sure your vehicle is secure.
  • lock your vehicle before you leave it and make sure all windows are wound up tight.

You MUST NOT stop or park on :

  • the carriageway or the hard shoulder of a motorway except in an emergency.
  • a pedestrian crossing, including the area marked by the zig-zag lines.
  • a clearway.
  • taxi bays as indicated by upright signs and markings.
  • a road marked with double white lines, even when a broken white line is on your side of the road, except to pick up or set down passengers, or to load or unload goods.
  • a cycle track.

You MUST NOT park in parking spaces reserved for specific users, such as Taxi Cabs, residents or motorcycles, unless entitled to do so.

DO NOT stop or park :

  • near a school entrance.
  • anywhere you would prevent access for Emergency Services.
  • at or near a bus stop or taxi rank.
  • on the approach to a level crossing.
  • opposite or within 10 metres of a junction, except in an authorised parking space.
  • where the pavement has been lowered to help wheelchair users and powered mobility vehicles.
  • in front of an entrance to a property.
  • on a bend.
  • where you would obstruct cyclists’ use of cycle facilities except when forced to do so by stationary traffic.

Parallel parking

Car parallel parking
Parallel parking car
  • Look for a space you can safely get your car into without hitting another car. It’s best to find a space that’s a few feet (a meter or so) longer than your car.
  • Pull up even to the front car. If your cars are different lengths, line up the back of your car with the back of the front car as best you can. You don’t have to be exact here.
  • Stop.
  • While stopped, turn your wheel all the way to the left. ALL THE WAY. Don’t move forward or back while doing this! Keep your foot on the brake!
  • Turn around and look out the back of your car.
  • Begin backing up. Your car should start turning into the spot. Don’t turn your wheel away from the all-the-way-left position!
  • Stop backing up when the right-front corner of the rear car is in the exact middle of your rear windshield. If you imagine a line extending backwards from your car along its centerline, you stop when the right-front corner of the rear car reaches that line.
  • While stopped, turn your wheel back to the middle position. Keep your foot on the brake!
  • Back up slowly until your car just barely clears the front car, then stop again.
  • STOP.
  • Turn your wheel all the way to the right. All the way! Stay stopped while you do this. Keep your foot on the brake!
  • Now keep backing in. Don’t turn your wheel away from the all-the-way-right position!
  • Once your car is parallel, STOP and then turn your wheel to face forwards again.
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