AA Ireland said the Christmas holiday season will bring bumper-to-bumper traffic.
"Christmas is still likely to cause some issues for motorists as AA Roadwatch warn drivers to expect jammed roads in the final days before Christmas," it said.
The traffic information provider said traffic levels in Ireland are at their heaviest in recent years and this is unlikely to ease off over the holidays.
“Motorists can expect to see a surge in city-centre traffic on Thursday 21 December, as last-minute shoppers try to take advantage of late closing hours to get all of their gifts sorted,” said Elaine O’Sullivan, Editor of AA Roadwatch.
“Meanwhile, on Friday December 22 traffic levels will start to build up from 1pm as those leaving city centres around the country make their way home for Christmas before traffic starts to die down again after approximately 4pm,” she added.
As for Christmas Day itself, AA Roadwatch said traffic will be light as people are most likely to stay in and spend the day with family or friends and this will also likely be the case on St Stephen’s Day. However, on December 27 local town centres are likely to experience heavy congestion due to retail sales, for which AA Roadwatch are advising shoppers to leave early to avoid queues.
AA Rescue tips to ensure your Christmas in a merry one:
Not all service stations are open on the 25th – remember to fuel-up in advance using the
correct fuel type
Make sure to have a spare wheel as a lot of tyre centres and garages are closed
To avoid your battery going flat remember to switch off all headlights, interior lights, heaters
and the radio when leaving your car
Keep a pair of jump leads in your boot
Prepare an in-car safety kit to include: a demisting cloth, de-icer, shovel, salt/sand,
AA Membership card, torch, warning triangle