Despite our recent exit from the EU, many UK motorists will still be taking to the roads and crossing the English Channel to enjoy holiday destinations throughout Europe, but being clued up on European travel is vital for a straight forward, fuss free and thoroughly enjoyable journey. Check out the following guide to travelling by car to and throughout Europe.
Get Europe ready
There is much research to be done prior to your trip to Europe, and whilst you may be familiar with driving at home, things are of course very different elsewhere. In addition to getting the information you need regarding road rules, toll booth locations and parking facilities – three factors that we will explore throughout this article – making sure your vehicle is ready for European travel is of the utmost importance.
Here at Collison Vehicle Rental, we stock and supply vehicles that are insured and fully equipped to go abroad, a move that has set us apart from other hire companies. Whether you wish to hire a van or car, our European travel ready vehicles come with a continental kit as standard, which contains items that you may not normally carry at home but are legal requirements in numerous EU countries. Our specially prepared vans and cars are also insured, taxed and breakdown covered for European travel.
Be aware of EU road rules
As we’ve mentioned road rules throughout Europe are different than those enforced in the UK, and as well as carrying the continental kit supplied with all of our European travel ready vehicles, you must carry certain documents within your vehicle or face fines and other penalties. A valid full driving licence, copy of your DVLA driver record, International Driving Permit, original vehicle registration document, motor insurance certificate, passport, travel insurance and visas where applicable must be transported on-board with you. If your vehicle has been borrowed, hired or leased a letter of authorisation must be provided by the registered keeper of the vehicle.
Many European cities also operate low emission zones and congestion charge schemes, so do register where necessary before you set off. Country specific road rules differ, and analysing each country that you pass through on your European trip and the associated road laws is highly recommended.
A word about tolls and parking
Toll booths are very much part and parcel of every European trip and road charges apply in most European countries, particularly on the main motorway network. Make sure you factor toll charges into your overall travel budget, and carry some cash if possible as whilst some countries operate automatic and cashless toll systems many use the old fashioned way.
Parking fees also apply, but it is important to note that the Blue Badge is recognised throughout all European countries.