Driving in Europe – don’t get caught out

You may have seen our guide to summer driving last week and one of the comments in particular can be expanded upon if you’re driving abroad this summer.

UK drivers can fall foul of the law very easily abroad simply through not researching what is and isn’t allowed on European roads.

As a blog post from last year showcases, the laws vary hugely between EU nations, and can result in large fines if they are not adhered to.

Driving to a holiday destination is an increasingly popular choice – so we’ve listed some of the pitfalls that can affect the unwary motorist.

Alan Greenwood, General Manager at Perrys said: "With the number of people traveling to Europe in their own cars this summer, Perrys want to ensure that people are prepared and aware of the rules and regulations that apply when driving on foreign roads."

– When driving abroad it is essential to carry appropriate paperwork, this includes; a full UK driving licence and paper counterpart. If necessary an international driving permit and the original V5 document may also be required.

– Make sure you contact your insurer at least one month before you plan to travel to ensure that you and your vehicle are adequately insured.

– In most European countries a fine will be issued to motorists who fail to use hazard lights when stopped on the roadside or who fail to carry a reflective jacket and warning triangle in their vehicle.

– Make sure your vehicle displays a GB sticker, if you don’t you could face an undisclosed on the spot fine.

– If you get into a spot of bother dial 11215, which is an emergency call number that can be used in 27 member states of the European Union in case of accident or any distress situation.

– Make sure that you do not overload your vehicle as this can invalidate your insurance and lead to on the spot fines.

– Speed trap detection devices which are used to notify of police radars are illegal in most European countries. If caught using one expect to receive a fine, driving ban, or in some cases imprisonment.