July 30, 2018

It’s a sign! Over three-quarters of Brits are not familiar with UK road signs.

With the surprisingly hot summer we are having in Britain, many of us classic enthusiasts are taking our classic car or classic bike out for a spin; but how many of us are up to date and familiar with the Highway Code?

A new study commissioned by easyJet and Europcar amongst 2,000 British motorists revealed that 76% of us admit to being unfamiliar with UK road signs and their meanings. So, we thought, why not put you to the test and select the most common signs you regularly see on the road and how many you know?

Each sign you guess correctly +1 point!

(Answers can be found near the bottom)

Let's Play!

Highway code signs

More highway code signs

More highway code signs


Sign 1 Answer: National speed limit

The national speed limit sign is depicted by a white circle with a black diagonal strip across the centre. These are most commonly found on the motorway, dual carriageways and country roads.

Did you know that the national speed limit changes depending on the type of road you are on? If you are on the motorway or on a dual carriageway and see the national speed limit sign, the speed limit is 70mph. If you are on a single carriageway/road and see the national speed limit sign, you are restricted to 60mph.

If you guessed this right +1 point

Sign 2 Answer: No entry for vehicle traffic

This sign is used to indicated that entry to the area where the signs are displayed is forbidden for vehicle entry.

If you guessed this right +1 point

Sign 3 Answer: No motor vehicles

As much as we would like to think that this sign means no flying motorcycles, it doesn’t. Unfortunately, whether we have a classic car or a classic bike, modern car or modern motorcycle, this sign means no motor vehicles; however, pedestrians and cyclists are still free to use the road beyond the sign. 

If you guessed this right +1 point

Sign 4 Answer: No overtaking

The no overtaking sign is a white circle with a red outer line and a black and red vehicle alongside each other.

Top tip: When you see a red sign, remember it is giving you an order.

This sign, therefore, orders you not to overtake as it would be illegal to do so. The restriction ends when the lines in the road change from a continuous white line to a broken white line.

If you guessed this right +1 point

Sign 5 Answer: Give way to oncoming traffic

These signs are often seen when a lane is too small to get two vehicles through. The red arrow is instructing you that you don’t have right of way. The large black arrow instructs you that the oncoming vehicle has priority.

Sometimes these signs are in blue, but the arrows still indicate who has priority. If the white arrow is bigger it indicates that you have right of way and the smaller red arrow tells you that the oncoming traffic is instructed to wait for you to pass.

If you guessed this right +1 point

Sign 6 Answer: No stopping (Clearway)

This sign is one that confuses many as the sign can be accompanied by other signs and lines, which in the end just confuses us all; but we will try our best to explain.

No stopping (clearway) or no stopping on double red lines means no stopping at any time, even to drop off or pick up passengers.

No stopping on red route single red lines has restricted stopping times that are displayed on the sign adjacent to the line.

If you guessed this right +1 point

Sign 7 Answer: No waiting

In essence, the no waiting sign allows motorists to stop briefly to drop off or pick up a passenger (for example).

If you guessed this right +1 point

Sign 8 Answer: Give way

Some signs are not always risen on a pole, some signs you must watch out for can be road markings. The sign above is giving you the warning to give way. This is represented by the white triangle and the two broken lines.

Did you know that the triangle points towards the vehicle that needs to give way?

But there’s no need to worry as many of the road markings come with a clear sign risen off the ground, stating give way.

If you guessed this right +1 point

Sign 9 Answer: Minimum speed (example 30mph)

All of us will be familiar with general speed limit signs, where a number is highlighted in a red circle with a white background, but are you familiar with minimum speed limit signs?

When you see a blue sign with no red border, it often gives you a positive instruction. For instance, the blue circle above with a white number tells you that the minimum speed limit is 30mph. Other blue (positive signs) include ahead only or mini-roundabout.

If you guessed this right +1 point

Sign 10 Answer: Traffic merging from the left-hand side

It is what it is. The triangle sign is warning you that there is merging traffic from the left-hand side. If you have always wondered who has right of way, it is always the traffic on the freeway as there is no law that requires a driver in the right-hand lane to move over, slow down or take another action.

If you guessed this right +1 point

Sign 11 Answer: T-junction with priority over vehicles from the left

A T junction is a 3-way junction with an intersection that has three arms (a Y junction generally has arms of equal length). This sign indicated a T junction

If you guessed this right +1 point

Sign 12 Answer: Sharp bend to the left

This sign is commonly seen on country roads to indicate a very sharp bend ahead that you may not see or realise. As the arrows are pointing to the left, the sign is telling you that the sharp bend will be to the left, and vice versa, if the arrows are pointing to the right, the sharp bend will be in that direction.

If you guessed this right +1 point

Scoring System

Tell us how well you have done and post your score on our Facebook or Twitter post!

0-4: We think you need to revise The Highway Code from scratch.

5-8: Maybe now is the time to read up on your Highway Code. The roads are constantly changing and with the introduction of smart motorways and different systems, you need to make sure that you are aware of all the new road signs, as well as the old.

9-12: Congratulations! Just remember there are many more signs on the road; spot one you don't recognise, take a minute to look it up.

These are just a few of many road signs to be cautious of when taking your classic car or classic bike on the road this summer; it gives you a small indication as to whether you are all up to speed with your Highway Code and its signs.

If you feel like you need to brush up your knowledge on the variety of signs you see, visit the Highway Code website.

Please note: the signs in The Highway Code are not all drawn to the same scale and some older design of road signs may still be on the road.