UK the most gridlocked country in Europe

London, UK:  Britain is the most gridlocked European country according to the latest traffic study from TomTom, which reveals some of the most congested hotspots in Europe.

It shows that 16 British cities feature in the top 50. London, despite a 0.2% decrease in traffic, climbs up the rankings to take third place in the most congested city list, while Edinburgh and Manchester both feature in the top ten.

“With traffic congestion already costing the UK economy £8bn a year, it’s no great surprise that so many UK cities feature in the European top 50,” said Giles Margerison, director, UK and Ireland, TomTom Business Solutions

But where there a problem there’s always a solution. “For businesses that rely on drivers getting from A to B as quickly as possible, fleet management technology can be used to cut journey times by as much as 15% by automatically routing around congestion,” Margerison says.

Brussels is still topping the chart as the most congested European city and congestion in the Belgian Capital is getting worse, showing a 1.2% increase in traffic since 2010.

It’s not all bad news however. Six of the continent’s most congested cities have significantly reduced traffic since 2010.

Polish city Wroclaw has seen a 2.6% drop, moving it down to fourth place out of 50. Meanwhile, Toulouse in France has reduced congestion by an impressive 1.9%, making it fifth in the rankings with 33% of roads congested in the city.

In comparison, the German city of Cologne sits at the bottom of the top 50; only 18.9% of its roads are congested. But Germany still features six times in the overall list.

The data shows that your drivers will have the most stress-free trip in Spain, Switzerland, Norway, Hungary, Ireland or the Czech Republic, each of which has only one city in the top 50.

The most positive change of all has been made by Ireland. While Belfast still sits at number 12, there has been a reduction of 2% in traffic congestion over the last year. And Dublin has seen its traffic by a staggering 9.7% since 2010 – although at 24.2%, it’s still got some way to go to beat traffic-efficient Cologne.

The research is based on TomTom’s real travel times database, compiled over years of researching and tracking road speeds with the help of TomTom users worldwide. Travel information is sent anonymously to TomTom every day when users connect their device to TomTom HOME, its free desktop software. The anonymous data provides an insight into how fast traffic can travel on a city’s road network at different times of the day, allowing TomTom to provide the most up-to-date routes and diversions around traffic via its IQ Routes technology.

The Top 10 most congested cities are:

  1. Brussels
  2. Warsaw
  3. London
  4. Wroclaw
  5. Toulouse
  6. Lyon
  7. Edinburgh
  8. Marseille
  9. Paris
  10. Manchester