But like motorways, parking or taking your first lesson out on the road, roundabouts quite simply aren’t as bad as they appear.
What’s more, they get easier and easier the more you use them.
Let’s take a look at a few tips to make the process easier.
Tip 1 – Choose your exit, and your lane
The first thing you want to think about is which exit you’ll be taking.
You should know this in advance of entering the roundabout, and your sat nav will also tell you. Stay to the left-hand lanes, or the left of the road, for the first 50% of exits, and be on the right-hand side for the following ones.
For a three-lane roundabout, only the first exit requires you to be on the left-hand side.
Tip 2 – Watch your gears and speed
An appropriate speed is absolutely essential to tackle a roundabout. If you go to fast, you’ll make hasty decisions and potentially endanger other road users. Too slow and you’ll hold things up, which is also very dangerous in itself.
Second gear is absolutely fine for your average roundabout, and you can go up to third for faster ones on A-roads and dual carriageways. Sticking to these gears is a good way to ensure you keep the right speed.
Tip 3 – Remember to give way!
You’ve probably heard a bit about this one already. Put simply, by ‘giving way to the right’, we mean to allow traffic coming from the right-hand side to have priority. Once there’s no more traffic coming from the right, then you can enter the roundabout.
Tip 4 – Indicating
Indicating at the right time is very important – doing it incorrectly is confusing for other drivers. Indicate for your lane as soon as you pass the exit point of the preceding lane. So if you’re coming off on the second exit, begin indicating as you pass the halfway point of the first exit.
Tip 5 – Be assertive
It’s important to be assertive, yet careful, when you’re exiting the roundabout. After you’ve checked your mirrors and indicated, begin to move into the next lane if appropriate, and ensure that you’re in the right position to leave the roundabout.
Tip 6 – Get away!
After you’ve exited the roundabout, it’s important to get away from it quickly so as to keep the traffic flow moving. Go up a gear and accelerate away.