Forward Bay Parking Tips

Forward Bay parking to the Right

Driving tips forward bay park

Forward park into a bay – turning to the right

This covers a forward bay park to the right. The reversing part of the manoeuvre will be covered further into the tutorial.

  1. To turn into the bay easily, you need to be as far away from the bay as possible.


  1. To do this, use as much of the road as possible by moving over to the left as far as you can, avoid driving over bay markings or getting too close to parked vehicles. Before you do this however, check your internal and left mirror to ensure it’s safe for moving over to the left.


  1. It’s important that you show your intentions by signalling to the right if necessary. Before doing so, check your interior mirror followed by your right door mirror.


  1. You will now reach your first reference point. This reference point is also your point of turn (see forward parking to the right reference point). From the bay which you intend on driving into, when the first line appears just under your right door mirror, stop the car (you don’t have to stop, but it slows the manoeuvre down, allowing for better observation). Now take a final look into your interior and right mirror, followed by the right blind spot. If all clear, very slowly move off and immediately steer quickly to full right lock.


  1. As you enter the bay, straighten up your steering when your dashboard is in line with the horizon, or something else such as a hedge or fence.


  1. In order to know where to stop, the next reference point is when the end bay kerb or line comes just under your door mirror (see reference points). When the kerb reaches this point, you will be safely in the bay. Once there, select neutral and apply the handbrake.


Reversing Out of the Bay

  • Some car parks, particularly those that may be of limited space may have a one-way system. If there are painted road arrows which dictate the flow of traffic, it’s important that you reverse in a direction that allows you to drive off with the flow of traffic.

  • Your view of the road that you’re reversing into can be significantly restricted, particularly if there are vehicles parked either side of you – the green shaded area of the inset image displays the limited view in which you can see of the road. It’s critical that you begin reversing very slowly, continuously look up and down the road that you’re reversing into and stop if any vehicles approach. If possible, look through the windows of parked vehicles to aid observation.

Reversing out of a bay

Before reversing, get the car ready to move by selecting reverse gear and hand on the handbrake ready to release. Look up and down the road that you’ll be reversing into as much as your view will allow. If all looks clear, look in the direction of travel and begin very slowly reversing, think of a ‘crawling’ speed. It’s essential at this point that you’re prepared to quickly stop your car. If a vehicle approaches, stop to assess their actions. They may drive around you or they may stop. If they stop, continue with the manoeuvre. Continuously look around before moving and during. Continue to reverse straight until you reach the reference point.

  1. As you begin to turn, the front of your car will swing out. It’s important that you not only observe the road you are entering, but now also the front of your car so to avoid it hitting a car parked in the bay alongside you. At the reference point, or ‘point of turn’, turn the steering wheel half turn to either the left or the right.

Which way you turn depends on which way you want to reverse and drive off. For your car to reverse to the left, steer to the left and for your vehicle to reverse to the right, steer to the right. When you are confident that the front of your car is clear of vehicles parked alongside you, proceed to full lock.

  1. Continue to reverse for a sufficient distance on full steering lock until you are confident that you have enough space to drive off. Stop the car and select first gear and before moving off, check the left side blind spot if you reversed out to the left, or the right side blind spot if you reversed out to the right. You check the blind spot before moving off to ensure there are no pedestrians, cyclists or motorcycle riders about to pass in front.