There are restrictions on the design, number and the possible locations of controlled crossings such as zebra and signalled crossings. Courtesy crossings can be positioned to allow people to cross the road at places that are most convenient for them such as on a direct desire line of pedestrian flow. Because they may be spaced more closely so that only a few people need to cross at one time, there is less delay to traffic.
Courtesy crossings need to be at places where drivers are already travelling slowly. This includes city, town, suburban or village centres where people expect to be able to move about safely in a pleasant, interesting place.
They work well within a 20mph zone or where actual speed is at or lower than 20mph, such as at a roundabout, or where speeds can be reduced as a result of traffic calming. Many existing informal crossings are quite inconvenient for pedestrians. There may be ways to convert an informal crossing into a courtesy crossing.
The most significant advantage is that they can be designed to fit in more precisely to the physical characteristics of the location: rural village, historic town, elegant suburb or pristine city centre.