Getting onto a motorway from a slip road

I have passed my driving three months ago and I'm now planning to go on a short trip using the motorway. I know slip roads are there to gain appropriate speed before joining a motorway's left hand lane.

What if even gaining the appropriate speed while on slip road, I can't manage to get on to the motorway when the slip road ends? What should I do in this situation? Should I stop on the slip road, put on the right indicators and wait for a safe gap before I start changing lane?

Asked on 26 October 2021 by Junaid Akhtar

Answered by Russell Campbell
£100 on some motorway lessons would be money well spent – joining the motorway can be a daunting experience, but it shouldn't be.

In practice, you need to accelerate up to motorway speeds and check your mirrors to find a gap in traffic. You'll find most motorway traffic will move from the slow lane to the middle lane to let you on, leaving slower traffic like HGVs (which are limited to 60mph) that will be easy to overtake, allowing you to filter into traffic. The last thing you want to do it stop on the slip road – this should only ever happen in busy traffic – because you'll leave yourself exposed to quick traffic and find it hard to accelerate up to speed without the slip road run up.

The highway code says, you should:

Give priority to traffic already on the motorway

Check the traffic on the motorway and match your speed to fit safely into the traffic flow in the left-hand lane

Not cross solid white lines that separate lanes or use the hard shoulder

Stay on the slip road if it continues as an extra lane on the motorway

Remain in the left-hand lane long enough to adjust to the speed of traffic before considering overtaking
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