Driving to Spain: rules of the road

Posted on 16 August 2017

It’s that time of year when people decide to combine a viewing trip in Spain with a road trip through Europe. Hitting the open road is a great way to add a bit of adventure to your journey, as you take in the stunning scenery in France and Spain. To make sure it’s a resounding success there are a few rules and regulations you’ll need to be aware of.

Driving through France

Rather than hopping on the ferry to Bilbao or Santander, why not go the whole hog and drive the entire length of France to cross the border into Spain.

We all like to do our bit for the environment, so you shouldn’t have any problem remembering that you are required to display an emissions sticker on your windscreen when driving through Paris, Lyon or Grenoble, as part of the Crit’Air scheme to reduce pollution. Stickers can be purchased online for just €4.80, which includes postage to Britain. Failure to do so could incur an on-the-spot fine of €68!

For the first time British drivers can be traced via the DVLA and fined for driving offences committed in France and other EU countries. This includes speeding, failing to stop at a red light, not wearing a seatbelt and driving while using a mobile phone.

Driving in Spain

We all know not to break the speed limit or drink and drive – the limit for alcohol in the blood is lower in Spain than the UK – when we get behind the wheel, so here are some less obvious road violations that you could fall foul of without a bit of warning:

  • Throwing litter out of your car window – €80 fine for littering, €200 fine for throwing a cigarette butt.
  • Distractions such as eating, drinking or even powdering your nose could incur a €100 fine.
  • It’s illegal to drive wearing flip flops.
  • Children must always sit in the back.
  • High visibility jackets MUST be worn by the driver and all passengers when leaving the vehicle in the case of an accident or breakdown. Two warning triangles must also be displayed. Failure to do either could incur two separate fines of €200.
  • Keep your number plates clean so they are legible.

If you stick to the rules of the road you won’t have any problem making it from A to B. And who knows you might enjoy the freedom of driving – not to mention the extra room for luggage – so much that you decide to drive down to your new pad in Spain once you have the keys.

When you’re ready to make the move, click here to download the Spain Buying Guide. It’s completely FREE and packed with great advice.

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