Where can you drive your mobility scooter?

If you have trouble walking or getting around a mobility scooter can transform your day-to-day life, but one of the most common questions customers ask is, where can they legally drive their mobility scooter? There is a lot of misunderstanding on the subject of where mobility scooters can be driven, users are often concerned that they are breaking the rules, while some able-bodied members of the public can often be quick to criticise and complain. This is because the information is not readily available and many people don’t know what the rules are. Here we’ll answer all the most common questions people have asked.

A busy street in London, with a pedestrians and vehicles in background

Types of mobility scooters

Mobility scooters are officially split into two different categories. Class 2 and Class 3 scooters.

Class 2 mobility scooters

Class 2 mobility scooters are intended for pavement use only – they can only reach up to 4mph, which is the legal limit for use on pavements.

Class 3 mobility scooters

Class 3 mobility scooters are intended for use on the road or the pavement – they can reach up to 8mph, but must have a setting that can limit their speed to 4mph for use on the pavement. They must be fitted with lights and indicators and be registered with the DVLA (driving license by the government of the UK) to be used on the road.

Mobility scooters and the Highway Code

Many new mobility scooter users may be unaware that they are classed by law as a type of vehicle and as such certain rules apply to them.

Class 2 mobility scooters are limited to a maximum of 4mph and are only permitted for pavement use. However, because class 3 scooters can be taken on the road, they must be registered by their owners with the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) and cannot be driven by anyone under 14 years of age. However, as long as they have a device that limits them to 4 mph on the pavement, class 3 scooters are exempt from road tax. If you have a class 3 scooter and you need to register it, you’ll need to complete form V55/4 for a new scooter, or form V55/5 for a used scooter, and return it to the DVLA.

Most common questions asked

  • Are mobility scooters allowed on pavements? Yes. Both Class 2 and Class 3 mobility scooters are allowed on pavements. The maximum legal limit for vehicles on pavements is 4mph. Class 2 mobility scooters are limited to 4mph. So long as Class 3 mobility scooters have a device fitted that limits them to 4mph while on the pavements, they too are permitted.
  • Are mobility scooters allowed on the roads? Yes. Class 3 mobility scooters are permitted on the roads, though there are some restrictions. The maximum road speed is 8mph, they cannot be driven on motorways, bus lanes or cycle lanes. They must have an effective braking system, front and rear lights as well as reflectors, indicators that are capable of acting as hazard lights, an audible horn, a rearview mirror, and an amber flashing light.
  • Are mobility scooters allowed in shops? Yes. By law all public buildings must have disabled access, this includes access for mobility scooters as well. Class 2 and Class 3 mobility scooters are allowed in shops, however, Class 3 scooters must have a device that can limit them to 4mph, as 4mph is the legal limit for inside shops. If you have a large all-terrain scooter, you may struggle to navigate around some shops as the access is usually designed for wheelchairs and smaller pavement scooters.
  • Are mobility scooters allowed on buses or trains? The answer to this can vary and is dependent on the company providing the service. It is the user’s responsibility to check before travelling with the service provider.

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