New Driving Rules & Laws For 2021

Published Date: 21st Feb 2021

Here are the latest rules and changes drivers should be aware of for 2021

Changes To Driving Your Car In Europe Post BREXIT

operating phone while driving

If you plan on driving your car in Europe once we get back to some kind of normality, then you will need to take your Photocard Driving License. You will also need a GB sticker on our vehicle and Green Card which you can get from your insurance company. If you own the vehicle you will also need to take your V5C logbook or a VE103 form if the vehicle is leased or hired. We have covered post BREXIT driving in Europe in more detail here.

Stricter Rules Regarding Using Your Phone Whilst Driving

The rules on using your phone or a sat nav device while driving have been tightened. You cannot take photos/videos or use the device while driving. The tightening of the rules includes operating the screen with gestures like scrolling or swiping through options/menus for example when selecting music.

The rule of thumb is set up your music playlist or sat nav route before you set off as the implications can be a £200 fine and 6 points on your license.

New ‘Green Flash’ Number Plates For Zero Emissions Vehicles

operating phone while driving

New electric and zero emissions vehicles will get a new unique Green Flash number plate. The new plates will make clean electric cars easily distinguishable and could be used for automatically recognising such vehicles when they enter low and emissions free zones. It could also be used to identify such vehicles for cheaper or free parking in designated town centres and parking areas.

New Low and Emissions Free Zones Planned

2020 lockdown has seen a lot of of ‘best laid plans’ put back and some of the new and scheduled low emissions zones fall into that category. The following were deferred from their original launch dates in 2020.

London ULEZ sign

Birmingham’s Clean Air Zone will go ahead on 1st June 2021 and Bath will also have a similar system operable on the 15th March 2021 (assuming there are no more delays). You can check if your vehicle will be subject to a levy when entering these zones on the Government website here.

London’s ULEZ zone will be extended from October 2021, the new larger zone will be enclosed by the A406 (North Circular Road) and the A205 (South Circular Road). You can check if your vehicle meets London’s ULEZ requirements here

Oxford’s Zero Emissions Zone should be in operation by mid-2021 after being delayed in 2020 due to the COVID situation. As the name suggests only zero emissions vehicles will be allowed into the designated area. More info can be found here.

Bristol’s CAZ (Clean Air Zone) is expected to be operational by October 2021, you will need a clean hybrid or electric, a EURO 6 or better diesel or EURO 4 or better petrol vehicle to avoid the £9 charge.

Cleaner E10 Petrol Fuel Rollout

A new cleaner petrol fuel called E10 is expected to be rolled out in 2021. The new cleaner petrol fuel should reduce carbon emissions further.

Automatic Lane Keeping Aids Could Be Officially Approved

Automatic Lane Keeping Systems or ‘ALKS’ that keep vehicles positioned in their lanes automatically at lower speeds could be officially approved mid to late 2021. The outcome is still pending the results of safety tests and scrutiny, but should it be approved it will mean drivers will be able to designate control of their vehicle at lower speeds, if equipped with the relevant Lane Keeping technology.