Can I Bring my Car to University?

AFS Team·24 May 2023·4 min read
Can I Bring my Car to University?

The idea of driving your car while at university is appealing. You won't be restricted to bus or train schedules and have an additional layer of freedom. While there often aren't any restrictions saying that students can't bring a car to their university, there are some reasons why it might not be as nice as you first anticipated. It’s important to do your research before making the decision to bring your vehicle with you as a student.

University regulations

Many universities, such as the University of Bristol, recommend that students do not bring a car unless absolutely necessary. If you would still prefer to bring one, see if your university has any restrictions or regulations. You can usually find this online but can also speak to your university directly with specific questions.

A lot of universities require students to register if they are planning on bringing cars and apply for parking permits. The permit allows you to park in designated car parks but will usually only be available for a fee. The University of Leeds, for example, has zoned areas where you have to pay additional parking fees if their free car park is full.

Local Regulations

If you're comfortable with the university regulations, it's time to take a look at the local regulations. Some cities or towns may have restricted parking zones or require residents to obtain parking permits to park on the street. Cities such as Bristol and Birmingham are chargeable Clean Air Zones, meaning high-emission vehicles are charged for driving through the city. Be sure to familiarise yourself with these regulations to avoid any potential fines or penalties.

Student Accommodation Location

When deciding whether or not to bring your car to university, it’s also important to consider where your student accommodation is in regards to your university campus. Many universities offer accommodation that is within walking distance of university buildings or offer free/discounted student bus routes. You can read more about what type of accommodation most universities offer on What type of accommodation do Universities offer? If you are planning on finding private accommodation, don’t neglect prioritising the location as it can heavily influence your need for a vehicle. You can check out what accommodation is available in your city here.

Bringing a car to university definitely seems like the most convenient option, and in some cases it is. But, before you make the decision, we recommend looking at what your university and the city requires. It might help save you from some future hassle!