European Roads Autobahn Motorway Travel Information – advice speed limits road conditions in europe

European Roads – Autobahn Motorway Travel Information

essential information and advice for motorists driving in Europe

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Essential Considerations

Visitors intending to drive abroad should check that their UK or EU driving licence is valid. If you are planning to drive, make sure your driving licence is current and valid. In some countries you may additionally require an International Driving Permit.

It is also generally advisable to carry your vehicle registration documents with you or alternatively a letter of authority (or hire contract) from the owner of the vehicle with contact telephone numbers. In some countries without these details the border guards customs and police have the power to impound the vehicle. These problems are more frequently encountered when you try to leave a country.

It is also advisable to carry sufficient local currency to purchase fuel as credit cards are not always accepted at petrol stations particularly in Eastern Europe and Scandinavia.

Sufficient local currency should also be carried to by the autobahn motorway road tolls.

Single parents, carers or guardians of accompanying children should also carry evidence (which can be confirmed) that they have the consent of the other parent or parents to have the child with them.

Further information on the requirements on these issues is available from the respectve country’s consulate office. Please see the links on the euromost consulate page.

Specific Advice By Country

The thirty euromost country profiles contain specific and essential advise for motorists travelling to that country specifically – for more information please click here

General Advice
Ensure you understand the laws of driving in the country you are visiting. Some countries impose on the spot fines for driving offences. Wherever you are going you should not drink or drive.

Though road signs are similiar across across europe especially within in european union member states, road traffic laws are not universal. For example motorists in Britain are allowed to drive with a higher level or alcohol in their blood than most european countries. Each country deternines its own these limits and some tolerate no alcohol in the blood at all.

Similiar differences apply to the speed limits on roads and motorways. In some countries such as Germany speed limits may vary from one autobahn ( motorway ) to another where the limits are set by regional authorities rather than the national government. In several areas in Germany, once renowned for its policy of not having any speed limits on the autobahn, various limits now apply.

In some countries it is compulsory to drive with dipped headlights even in daytime. In some contries motorists are breaking the law if their car tyres in winter do not have a specified tread and possibly snowchains as well. Many countries require motorists to carry warning triangles, which must be put a certain distance behind the car in the event of a breakdown.

Laws about seatbelts and children also vary. International Driving Licences are not accepted in all countries and where they or a foreign national driving is permissible – that permission may be time constrained so long stay visitors may have to take a driving test. In some countries you must carry your original insurance certificate and car registration documents with you whenever you are driving.

Motorists in some countries who break road traffic laws may have to pay on the spot fines – detained and taken before a local court. In some countries motorists who do not carry their car original registration documents with them or their ‘hire’ contract or satifactory evidence of the owners permission to drive the vehicle risk having the car impounded especially when they try to cross the border out of the country.

Roads in Western Europe are generally well maintained but in some parts of Eastern and South Eastern Europe their condition can be poor or very poor especially in rural or mountain areas. However even in cities, Tirana in Albania being one example, pot holes can be commonplace. In some towns sreet lighting may be poor or non existent.

In some countries the standard of driving is agressive, with locals blatantly ignoring traffic laws and other hazards can include slow moving farm vehicles and horse drawn trailers etc. Weather conditions in winter can be extremely dangerous.

Information on these issues is given in the Country profiles for each country. Please use the links on the right hand coloum.



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