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Traffic in London
Photograph: Brian Minkoff / Shutterstock.comLondon traffic is seriously bad

London’s traffic has been ranked the absolute worst in the world

We are at the top of the list of the world’s most congested cities

Written by India Lawrence

Londoners are so smug. Rightly so: our city is home to some of the best food, nightlife and American candy shops in the world. But if there’s one thing to come and knock us off our high horse, tumbling down into the gutter with the rest of the frankly sub-par cities of the earth, it’s our congested roads. Now, London’s traffic has been ranked as the worst in the whole world. 

According to data from INRIX, drivers spend more time stuck on gridlocked streets in London than in any other city on the planet. In 2021, our road hogs lost a whopping 148 hours each to congestion. And spending hours stuck behind the wheel has taken a toll on our bank accounts and businesses too, with the average cost of congestion £980 per driver over the year.

INRIX’s Global Traffic Scorecard takes into account the unique commuting patterns of each city, measuring collision trends, travel delays and average last-mile speeds. In the survey of congestion in more than 1,000 cities in 50 countries, London came top (bottom?) ahead of Paris, Brussels, Moscow and Rome. Within the UK, London was far and away the worst city, with Cambridge second (really??) and Exeter, Cheltenham and Bristol next. Clearly no one owns any kind of a motor vehicle up north.

So, plenty of scope there for the capital to do A LOT better on its roads. Still, if the UK can’t ever win Eurovision, at least we’re topping the global leaderboard at something.

London is also one of the most stressful cities to drive in.

Check out plans to make London the biggest car-free capital in the world.

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