Many people living in central Oxford choose not to own a car because traffic can be very congested and parking is difficult.
If you decide you would like to bring your car to the UK, or plan to buy one, it would be useful to read the government’s motoring in the UK website and to familiarise yourself with the Highway Code, which sets out the legal rules of the road in the UK.
You will need to ensure that both you and your car are fully insured: in the UK both the car and the driver(s) who need to be covered (unlike in some countries where it is just the car itself that is covered and anyone can drive it).
Parking spaces in the city are very limited. In many areas, street parking is restricted to 'residents only' for some or all of the day. If you do not have a driveway or allocated parking area on or near your property, you may need a resident's parking permit which you can purchase from Oxfordshire County Council here.
A helpful route planner can be found at the Automobile Association, normally referred to as 'the AA'. If you would like to find others with whom to carpool, you may search Oxfordshire County Council's Liftshare database which includes a group specifically for Univeristy staff.
If you have a foreign driving licence, you may be able to use it to drive in the UK for a limited period before having to qualify for a UK driving licence. In certain cases, you may be able to exchange your existing licence for a UK licence. For guidance, please consult the UK government website on driving licences.
Seatbelts and car seats
iI is compulsory for the driver and all passengers to use a seatbelt or suitable safety restraint. Children are required by UK law to be in a car seat when travelling by car until they reach the age of 12 or a height of 135cm, whichever comes first. The type of car seat required depends on the height and/or weight of the child. Details of UK car seat requirements can be found here. Car seats are sold in many department stores throughout Oxford. If purchasing a seat second-hand or online, please ensure that it complies with UK requirements to ensure the safety of your child. New regulations came into force in February 2017 meaning that booster seats sold after this date will be suitable only for children over 125cm or weighing over than 22kg, although existing models of booster seats may still be used.
An exception to the use of a car seat is if you and your children are travelling by a licensed taxi or minicab. If your child is under the age of 3, they must travel in a rear seat (any seat behind the driver) and a child over the age of 3 may travel without a car seat if an adult seat belt is worn.