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Road Safety Scotland's Seasonal ‘Drive on the Left’ Campaign

Introducing Road Safety Scotland's latest 'Drive on the Left' campaign, which urges drivers to stay safe and alert during their journey through Scotland.

We recognise that it’s tough to override ingrained, unconscious habits when it comes to driving, so we are grateful for any additional opportunities to remind visitors to drive on the left and to take extra care on Scotland’s roads. 

Campaign Background

  • Scotland welcomes millions of visitors every year, and many of these visitors enjoy hiring a vehicle to experience the beauty of Scotland’s rural landscapes.
  • Many visitors may be unfamiliar with driving etiquette in Scotland, particularly for more rural locations e.g., using single-track roads and passing places.
  • Recently, there has been a number of fatal accidents and near-misses on the A9 between Perth and Inverness with some involving drivers from overseas.
  • To tackle this, the Scottish Government and Road Safety Scotland (part of Transport Scotland) are running a campaign to remind visitors to drive on the left, to plan ahead and be cautious on Scotland’s roads, in preparation for the 2023 peak tourist season.

Key Messages

  • For many visitors, Scotland’s roads are unfamiliar and demand more concentration. Drivers from overseas are less used to driving on our rural roads, which can be long, twisty, undulating and often single-track.
  • Habit determines much of our driving behaviour. If you're not used to driving on the left, it’s easy to go into autopilot and drive on the right.
  • When driving in Scotland it's important to override the autopilot and drive 'consciously' – especially when entering a road with no other traffic or entering a roundabout.
  • Junctions can be tricky if you're not used to driving on the left. Make sure you look both ways when checking for traffic, and turn onto the correct side of the carriageway. This can be particularly hard to remember if there is no other traffic about.
  • It's particularly easy to go into autopilot if you are distracted by other people in the car, if you're tired or trying to decipher directions to find your destination.
  • Avoid driving tired by planning ahead and taking regular breaks. If you feel tired while driving, stop for a coffee and have a rest.
  • Visitors can pick up our handy Driving in Scotland leaflet, wristbands and stickers at car rental venues, tourist spots and VisitScotland iCentres during their visit.

How You Can Help

We would love your help in getting this message out via your communications channels. Attached is a Stakeholder Toolkit which includes example social media posts plus images and videos available for use.

Campaign Materials Available

Driving is an ingrained habit and so we have prepared materials to remind visitors to drive on the left during their experience. You could help by distributing these campaign materials:

  • ‘Drive on the Left’ wristbands - Available in various languages.
  • ‘Ride Left’ brake/clutch reservoir gaiters for motorcyclists - Available in various languages.
  • Instructional windscreen sticker – these sit on your windscreen with a visual representation of where to turn into.
  • ‘Driving in Scotland’ Leaflets – An instructional leaflet in various languages.
  • ‘Driving in Scotland’ Animation-  a short (90s) animation highlighting key points about driving in Scotland, available in multiple languages and formats (Available from w/c 10-April.)

To receive a batch of the materials above please contact to order.