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Driving in Europe – the need to knows

Driving in Europe is not a scary or as complicated as you may think. However, there are some requirements you need to be aware of before your trip. This simple checklist will help you ensure you are ready.


Driving a car on a mountain winding road in Europe

Important Documents

  • A full, valid driving licence

  • A national insurance number

  • Proof of your vehicle insurance

  • Proof of ID (your passport)

  • The V5C certificate for your vehicle (the log book)

  • Travel insurance documents

  • Your European breakdown cover policy number and documents

  • Ensure your vehicle’s tax and MOT are valid and your car is in good running order

  • A Crit’air sticker if driving in France’s restricted traffic or low-emissions zones (The easiest way to stay informed on all EU emission zones is to check the official website HERE. This website will inform you which zones are currently active and if you need to pre-purchase a sticker)

  • A UK sticker if your numberplate doesn’t have the UK identifier with the Union flag on it

  • You may also need one or more international driving permits (Check this guidance page for full information: https://www.gov.uk/driving-abroad/international-driving-permit)


Required Equipment

  • Reflective jackets for each passenger

  • A warning triangle

  • Headlamp beam deflectors either in the form of stickers or by manually making the adjustments

  • A first aid kit is compulsory in Austria, France and Germany


It is important to check and familiarise yourself with the driving laws of the country in which you will be driving through/in. More information and driving advice for European countries can found on the RAC website HERE. Just select the country from the dropdown box and press go.


Other items we recommend you take with you on your drive in Europe are:

  • A spare fuel can

  • Extra engine oil and water for topping up should you need it

  • SAT Nav or up-to-date road map

  • A fire extinguisher

  • Spare replacement bulbs

  • A high quality torch

  • A blanket

  • Sun cream

  • Extra supplies of any medication you may need

  • Refreshments and plenty of drinking water

Take in the scenery, drive safely and enjoy your trip!


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