Brummies react as Birmingham ranks in top 10 best cities to drive in Europe

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BirminghamWorld readers shared their reactions to a new study which has ranked Birmingham in the top 10 best cities to drive in Europe

New research has ranked Birmingham in the top 10 best cities to drive in Europe - and it’s prompted quite a reaction from Brummies.

Birmingham was the only UK city in the top 10 in the survey, by car insurers Compare the Market, with only two other UK cities making the list of 30 destinations.

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Birmingham was ranked at number 7 of the best cities to drive in Europe, while Liverpool is at number 16 and London is 23rd. Prague in the Czech Republic topped the list with a low traffic inefficiency score of 77.50 and 168 car parks per 100,000 people.

Researchers examined 30 of the most popular European cities on metrics including traffic inefficiency, car density and road quality revealing the best and worst European cities to drive in.

Birmingham at number seven had a traffic inefficiency score of 130.06 - almost double that of Prague. The bigger the score the more inefficient a city’s traffic is, according to the analysis.

Driving in BirminghamDriving in Birmingham
Driving in Birmingham | Adobe

Brummies were surprised that Birmingham was in the top 10 and Birmingham World readers shared their reactions with us.

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  • One person said: “We need an underground network as the traffic is beyond a joke.”
  • Another added: “Not after 10pm, it’s not.”
  • Another Brummie said: “No chance....I avoid it at all costs. It is one of the worst places I have driven. It is full of roadworks, diversions, closures.... oh and this ULEZ rubbish of which is more of a deterrent. Paying an ULEZ Tax does not clean the air and neither does it lower vehicle emissions!”
  • Another reader wrote: “Birmingham city centre is a construction site.”
  • Susie Barr said: “They’ve obviously never driven down Coventry Road! Sadly the very worst thing about our City!”
  • Martin Westwood wrote: “If you like counting pot holes.”
  • Another BirminghamWorld reader said: “Definitely not true, 15, 20 years council has messed up the city centre and surrounding areas big time.”
  • One person said: “I love loads of things to do in Birmingham and do not follow the trend to trash it as I enjoy the art exhibitions and cultural events and the canals and the restaurants etc a lot....but driving through Birmingham.”
  • Yet another person said: “Wait till they make it 20mph.”

Read the full table about the best European cities for driving, with Birmingham ranked at number 7:


  • One person posted: “F"***g jokes, no way... you travel from north Brum to south, for at least an hour!”
  • Another person commented: “I drive all day, everyday around lots of Birmingham and don’t find it good unfortunately. Lots and lots of road works with unclear signage and a lot of roads shut in the evenings from 9ish until the next morning at the moment. So, I’m really not sure who or at what time of day this was asked to, can they tell me the good bits and good luck to anyone negotiating it all, watch out for them fines.”
  • However, some people agreed with the survey as well. One person wrote: “Apart from a few areas, I actually agree, very courteous and calm drivers compared to a lot of other cities.”
  • Another person said: “I like driving along the A34 and over the flyover.”
  • Another person posted: “I agree. Unfortunately you always have brum bashers who are clearly sad people and really need to get a life.”
  • Birmingham has had several road traffic collisions in the recent past that lead to injuries and fatalities with several community organisations have been campaigning to make the streets safer.
  • Better Streets Birmingham are set to hold another demonstration in the city on Saturday (September 30) at 11am in Erdington at Gravelly Lane/Chester Road Junction.

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