Sarah Hunt

Sarah Hunt

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Here are the latest rules, regulations and guidance around driving in a private vehicle during the Coronavirus outbreak.

All information is provided from information* published by the government. For further information on any COVID-19 guidance or support on travel and driving, please visit GOV.UK.

*Information correct as of 19/07/2021 and may vary in accordance with local legislation. 


The Government have confirmed that as of 19 July, England will enter Step 4 of the roadmap. As part of the fourth stage of the Government’s plans, most legal restrictions that have previously been put in place will be lifted.

Although restrictions are being eased, we are still being urged to exercise caution and manage our own risk. With COVID-19 still prevalent, we are being asked to use common sense to protect ourselves and those around us.

Find more information on what you can and can't do in: 




Northern Ireland

When can you drive or travel during COVID-19?

Most legal restrictions will end from 19 July, meaning there will no longer be a limit on the number of people you can meet. As a result, there is likely to be increased travel among the general public.

The Government recommends that people continue to wear face coverings if they’re in crowded areas such as public transport.

To gain entry in some events, businesses or companies may require you to show your NHS COVID Pass. This will show your coronavirus vaccination details or test results. 

How far can you travel during COVID-19?

The Government’s traffic light system currently determines where we can travel and the quarantine rules that follow.

With countries on the green list posing the lowest risk, people travelling to and from those locations will not be required to isolate upon their return to England.

If you are arriving from a country on the red list or have not been fully vaccinated and are returning from an amber list country, you will be required to isolate upon your return to England.

Travel is permitted to countries on the amber list and as of July 19, those fully vaccinated will not be required to isolate. The traffic light system will be reviewed in July and October.

We are advised not to travel to red list countries or territories for leisure purposes.

Strict border control measures will remain in place, including pre-departure tests. The measures you are required to take both before travel and upon your arrival can change depending on your location. 

Find the current Red, Amber and Green list rules for:

Entering England

Entering Wales

Entering Scotland

Entering Northern Ireland


Can you drive if isolating?

Government advice is strongly against you or anyone else in your household going out if you are self-isolating. Please make use of home delivery services for shopping or call upon the help of friends and family if you need essentials.

If you have symptoms, you can have self-sampling kits delivered to your home, but it is also possible to drive to a test site. The Government’s advice states that there are a ‘few specific circumstances’ in which you can leave home while isolating, to find out more information see here

If you do need to drive to a test site, observe strict social distancing rules, do not go to work, school, or public areas and do not use public transport or taxis.

Can people take driving tests during COVID-19?

Driving tests are taking place in England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. Depending on your location, how you prepare ahead of your test may change. You might be asked to take a rapid lateral flow test and/or wear a face covering for the duration of your test unless exempt.

Find out how you should prepare for your practical driving test in:

England, Scotland and Wales

Northern Ireland

The DVSA has introduced several safety measures, including your driving examiners being required to wear face coverings, to ensure the safety of both parties.

You must not go to your driving test if:

  • you or someone you live with has COVID-19 symptoms
  • you’ve been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace
  • you’re quarantining because you recently entered the UK


The government did announce a six-month extension for vehicle MOTs that were due between 30th March – 31st July 2020. This means that for those who have an MOT that expires after this date, you must continue to book for MOT as usual. You should not however take your vehicle for its MOT if:

  • You or someone you live with has coronavirus symptoms
  • You have been in contact with someone with the virus
  • You are shielding

COVID-related FAQs for drivers

I now no longer need my car. What are my options?

Many might have experienced a period over lockdown where their cars were not in use, and subsequently, their circumstances might no longer mean they need daily use of a vehicle. 

Unfortunately, a lease agreement cannot be terminated early. However, lease funders do accommodate extenuating circumstances, so it's worth contacting them to discuss (however, bear in mind that fees may apply). 

Can you start a new lease?

Carparison has been and continues to operate as usual with extra precautions in place. We are still able to source and secure you the best lease deals and arrange a Covid-secure delivery.

So if you have your heart set on our Mercedes lease deals, or are still exploring your options, we at Carparison are here to help.

Not all manufacturers are back up to full capacity yet, and so there is a bit of a wait for factory-order vehicles. So why not make the most of ‘In Stock’ stocklists for cars that are ready and raring to go!

Can I have a lease car delivered?

We have been safely delivering lease cars throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite restrictions easing from July 19, many dealerships will continue to exercise caution during their delivery process. 

Want to know more about what your lease car delivery will look like after July 19? Read our extensive guide that takes you each step here.

For more guides, reviews, tips, and advice, make sure to visit our coronavirus guidance for drivers.