Discuss the Driving in Europe guide

edited 8 August 2018 at 4:12PM in Overseas Holidays & Travel Planning
32 replies 4.7K views
MSE_KelvinMSE_Kelvin MSE Staff
240 Posts
Fourth Anniversary 10 Posts Photogenic Name Dropper
MSE Staff

Hello there,

We've written a new guide to Driving in Europe and would love your feedback on it.

Please let us know if you find it helpful, what improvements we could make and if there are any other tips you think we should add.

Thanks for your help! :)

MSE Kelvin


  • unforeseenunforeseen Forumite
    6.9K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
    Definitely for Spain, and it may be other countries as well. If you require spectacles to drive then you must also have a spare pair in the vehicle
  • knightstyleknightstyle Forumite
    6.6K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts
    Two suggestions to add to a good article.
    1. Download a European Accident Statement form in English and the language where you are going to take with you.
    2. In France you must have the car docs with you at all times and the reflective jacket must be in reach of the driver.
    3. In France the town and village name signs are the speed limit start and end. White background 50kph, black background 70kph.

    OK, that makes 3, I never was any good at maths!
    Strangely in our area there are 3 lane roads and they are 90kph in the two lane direction and 80kph in the single lane direction, fortunately there are plenty of nice new speed signs so no excuses!
  • edited 7 August 2018 at 8:59PM
    richardwrichardw Forumite
    19.5K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts
    edited 7 August 2018 at 8:59PM
    Andorra, Croatia and Greece are missing from country specific guides.

    Can you take a hire car on ferries?

    What happens if I accidentally take a hire car out of the country? i.e hire in Italy take a wrong turning around Lake Como and end up in Switzerland?

    Is it worth buying a car seat at a local supermarket near the airport instead of taking your own?

    Driving to Ski resorts from the airport, do you save on transfers?

    When is it worth hiring a car with automatic transmission?
    Posts are not advice and must not be relied upon.
  • lovesgshplovesgshp Forumite
    1.4K Posts
    Ninth Anniversary 1,000 Posts
    When driving in Italy, watch out for signs saying TUTOR on the motorways. These are average speed cameras between different points.
    Also road work speed cameras. The Italian police are usually quite good when they set up a mobile speed trap as they put up a sign a few hundred metres ahead to let you know?
    Checks by the Carabinieri are quite frequent for documents and licenses are quite frequent, with one of them standing with a sub-machine gun as a guard.
    Italian drivers are usually on their mobile phones and many have never discovered what a indicator is for either.
    Don't be surprised if the car behind is inches from your bumper and then decides to overtake on a blind bend as this is normal.

    Watch out for motorcycles on weekends as they obey no rules and all think the road is a racetrack.
    As Manuel says in Fawlty Towers: " I Know Nothing"
  • cubegamecubegame Forumite
    2K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
    Biggest tip.

    If the locals drive like utter tits, don't try and compensate for it. Join in. You don't want to look like the British hire car driver who obeys the speed limits when no one else does.
  • AS most modern cars no longer have spare wheels nor the tools to change one, what doyou doin Spain if you get a puncture??
  • Having had a puncture whilst in Germany in April this year, Good old RAC European Breakdown took me to the nearest Main dealer for reasons best known to themselves who did not stock tyres and I was advised it would take 1-2 days to obtain one, no hotel rooms available locally, so after 4 hours they managed to find a WINTER TYRE, which whilst it was the correct one I had to be restricted to 80klms all the way back at a cost of £198.72 cash only, so was back on the road by 8.15pm. RAC response this was fine and that the dealer looked after us well which they did, being that I am a MOBILITY VEHICLE USER I found this all to be bizarre at the very least, on returning and researched tyre specialists in Germany I found one 15 minutes away in the next town who stocked my tyres. as an aside a lady who worked at the dealership and had a similar car to mine spent 20 minutes looking for a spare tyre that was not there, so me next time will be taking my own tyre with me along with the tools if possible, SO BE AWARE.
  • CambiaCambia Forumite
    7 Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    Can you add in driving speed limits for motorhomes? Lots of us go abroad and this would be a great help. Thank you.
  • Driving License expiry dates: we usually assume that our driving license is valid until we reach age 70, but in fact more recent photo Id licenses expire after 10 years, when you need to up-date the photo. I didnt realise this and was refused a hire-car last year as I had not taken the paper license. I'd never noticed the expiry date on the replacement license I received after reporting mine lost. On return, I found the 'lost' one which was valid until age 70.
    Please remind people to check / renew their plastic card in good time before their holiday, or use the paper license.
  • No mention of dash cams, banned/restricted in some countries, or speed camera detectors/alerts, also banned in some countries.
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