Half of Brits say they would not want their family or friends driving on a smart motorway

  • 45% of motorists also admit to not knowing what to do if they broke down on a smart motorway

Half (50%) of Brits do not like the idea of their family and friends driving on smart motorways, according to new research1 from GoCompare Car Insurance.  

Almost a third (31%) also said they themselves would not drive on a smart motorway, with the number increasing to 40% for those aged 65 and over. Perhaps surprisingly, nearly the same number of 18 to 24-year-olds (39%) also said they would not drive on smart motorways either.

The GoCompare research also found that nearly half (45%) of those questioned admitted they weren’t sure what do to if they broke down on a smart motorway – many of which have dynamic, digitally managed hard shoulders that are turned on and off to help with traffic flow.

Ryan Fulthorpe, car insurance expert at GoCompare said: “Our research shows that there is clearly a need for further education about the smart motorway system for all ages.

“The fact that more experienced drivers are reluctant to use these new road systems would come as no surprise, but that nearly the same number of young drivers are also keen to avoid using smart motorways just shows that British motorists don’t know enough about them to feel confident when driving on these new kinds of roads.”

“Even more concerning is the fact that nearly half of those we questioned would not know what to do if they broke down on a smart motorway,” Ryan added.

“This is a clear demonstration that, before a further roll out of these road networks across the UK can begin, a clear and simple driver education campaign must be carried out to ensure British motorists are taking to these roads knowing how they work, and most importantly, how to navigate them safely.”              


Lynsey Walden or Kath Chadwick at Gocompare on or

Keep up-to-date with GoCompare on Twitter; @GoCompare

Notes to editors

1On October 8th to 11th 2021, an online survey of 2,060 randomly selected Great British adults was executed by Maru/Blue. For comparison purposes, a probability sample of this size has an estimated margin of error (which measures sampling variability) of +/- 2.1%. The results have been weighted by age, gender, region and social grade to match the population, according to Census data. This is to ensure the sample is representative of the entire adult population of Great Britain. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

About GoCompare

GoCompare is a comparison website that enables people to compare the costs and features of a wide variety of insurance policies, financial products and energy tariffs.

It does not charge people to use its services and does not accept advertising or sponsored listings, so all product comparisons are unbiased. GoCompare makes its money through fees paid by the providers of products that appear on its various comparison services when a customer buys through the site.

When it launched in 2006, it was the first comparison site to focus on displaying policy details rather than just listing prices, with the aim of helping people to make better-informed decisions when buying their insurance. It is this approach to comparing products that secured the company an invitation to join the British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) in 2008, and it is still the only comparison site to be a member of this organisation.

GoCompare has remained dedicated to helping people choose the most appropriate products rather than just the cheapest and works with Defaqto, the independent financial researcher, to integrate additional policy information into a number of its insurance comparison services. This allows people to compare up to an extra 30 features of cover.

GoCompare is part of Future Plc and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

More information can be found here or here

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