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Ola! Tips for driving in Europe

2012-07-25 06:55

DON'T BE ALARMED: Some European road signs are in English but, depending on the country you're travelling in, you may be required to know more than just your road signs.

How often do you need to travel – and drive – abroad? Many countries require more than a simple AA-supplied international driving permits to take to their roads; get clued up before you go.

Be sure to know the latest driving laws of the respective countries you’ll be travelling in on your next European getaway with this handy guide.

The UK’s GEM Motoring Assist has thrown together a little leaflet with tips to help drivers prepare for the road – whether travelling in SA or abroad.

1 Have your car serviced before you go, but as a minimum check the tread on the tyres, oil and water levels
2 Keep a copy of your vehicle’s registration documents with you, never leave them in the car
3 Your nationality plate with the approved pattern, design and size
4 Make the necessary mechanical adjustments if there are particular headlight requirements
5 Take your driving licence
6 Make sure you have high visibility jackets for each person, at least one warning triangle, a first aid kit, replacement bulbs and a spare pair of prescription glasses
7 Take a detailed map and plan your journey well in advance

If your trip includes a twirl in Paris rather than Parys, GEM’s listed its 10 most unusual road rules for European countries

1 In Finland, if you hit an elk or deer you must immediately report the collision to the police
2 Both Spanish and Swiss law demands that if you need glasses for driving you must carry a spare pair with you in the car
3 In Sweden, it is compulsory to have dipped headlights on during the day and night
4 If you are towing a caravan in Portugal you must have a current inventory of all contents to show a police officer if requested
5 In Germany, it is an offence to run out of fuel on a motorway or to make rude gestures to other road users
6 In Austria, you must not park a caravan within 500m of a lake
7 In Italy, police can impound your car if you do no present the relevant ownership documents
8 In Norway, vehicles travelling downwards on hilly roads have priority
9 In Greece, carrying a petrol can in the car is forbidden
10 In France, police have the power to confiscate your car and your licence on the spot if you are caught speeding

Enjoy your trip!

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