Trailer towing in the U.K.

What can I tow?

Check out what you can legally tow with your driving licence by visiting: 

How much weight can my car / van tow?

This information is specific to the vehicle.. you can find out this information by: 

  • Checking your vehicle handbook
  • VIN (vehicle identification number) plate - usually located inside the drivers door or under the bonnet

Do I need brakes on my trailer?

  • YES - if it weighs over 750kg when loaded

What are the Speed limits when towing a trailer?

  • Single carriageway = 30, 40 or 50mph i.e. the stated speed limit of the road 
  • Dual carriageway & motorways = 60mph
  • Vehicles with trailers aren't allowed in the outside (fast) lane of a motorway

What else do I need to consider before I tow my boat trailer?

  • Tyres: must have at least 1.6mm tread depth across 3/4 of tyre width, be in good condition, be inflated to the recommended pressure
  • Brakes: Trailers with an overall weight of over 750kg must have functioning brakes. Braked trailers must also be fitted with a breakaway cable that operates the hand brake attached to the the vehicle NOT on the towbar

  • Wheel Bearings
  • Break Away Cable or second coupling (in case the hitch fails) attached to the the vehicle NOT on the towbar


  • Lightboard: 2 red sidelights, 2 red stop lights, 2 red reflective triangles etc
  • Number Plate showing same number plate as the vehicle 
  • If your vessel overhangs the trailer it must be clearly marked, Propellor cover or flag?
  • Tie Down Kit - tie down your boat / PWC (jetski) at the bow D-ring to the trailer (to stop bow bounce and to save the craft if the winch strap fails), and stern D-rings to the trailer (to stop the stern/back bouncing)