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Driving in France - the essential guide!

If you are driving abroad this year and especially France then our quick guide will help you stay on the right side of the law.

From headlight beam deflectors for right-hand drive cars, a ban on hands-free devices, different speed limits, and a lower alcohol limit for driving, to the things you need to carry in your car, don’t just set off and hope for the best.


10 things your need to travel abroad!

  • Passport
  • Driving License
  • Insurance Documents
  • V5 Log Book
  • Warning Triangle
  • Spare Bulbs
  • Reflective jacket for each occupant 
  • Headlamp Converters
  • GB Sticker (unless already on your numberplate)
  • Breathalysers

We also think its worth adding a First add kit to the pack!

To stay the right side of the law you must carry these items in your car when driving in France:

  • Two NF certified disposable breathalysers
  • Reflective jackets for all passengers
  • Warning triangles
  • Headlamp beam deflectors
  • A GB sticker to attach to your car if your number plate doesn’t already include this
  • For compulsory items in other countries please see the country table below

Remember:

  • Tell your car insurers that you’ll be driving abroad, some policies will not cover you as standard and require your dates of travel.
  • Don’t use your mobile phone when driving unless you have a built-in fully integrated hands free kit in the car. Bluetooth earpieces or wired earpieces are strictly forbidden and receive a €135 fine.
  • Drive on the right and watch your speed. Speed camera detectors are illegal in France. By law, if your sat nav comes with them or with camera locations, you are required to disable the alerts. Failure to do this can result in a €1,500 fine.
  • Driving in Paris requires you to buy a clean air sticker for your car that shows how much you pollute. Buy these online for around €4/£3.50. If you fail to do so and you’re stopped, there is a fine of between €68 and €135 awaiting you.
  • Carry your full and valid UK driver’s licence that will allow you to drive in all EU countries, including France, proof of insurance, proof of ownership (V5C is accepted), ID (Passport/national ID)
  • Alcohol Driving Limits and Local Laws Don’t drink and drive at all. And be aware of ‘morning after’ drink driving. It’s easier to be over the limit the next day without realising than you might think.
  • NF approved Breathalyser. It is illegal to drive in France without an NF approved breathalyser in your car.

Don't forget to check your breakdown cover. Many policies are only for breakdowns in the UK. You can add additional cover while you are away. One of the cheapest we have found is Start rescue at startrescue.co.uk

A quick guide to your driving essentials.

Drive safely and we hope you have a great trip!

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Posted on 26th March 2018 at 1:56 PM

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