Driving Overseas: Uncommon Guidelines and Legal guidelines


For those who’re heading overseas this 12 months, likelihood is you’ll be renting a automotive that will help you get round, and even making the journey in your individual automobile.

Nonetheless, it may be simple to get caught out by unfamiliar driving legal guidelines, particularly when some are so totally different from the foundations within the UK. So, we’re rounding up a few of the most uncommon driving legal guidelines from all over the world, so that you don’t get caught out in your travels.

1. You possibly can’t carry bikes on the again of your automotive

The place: Portugal

For many people, biking is a vital a part of our vacation. Whether or not you’re exploring new sights on two wheels or taking a leisurely experience by means of town, our bikes generally is a welcome boost to a visit. Nonetheless, for those who’re travelling in Portugal, you’ll must be cautious of the way you transport them.

It’s unlawful to hold bikes on the again of your automotive within the nation, which implies that each rear-mounted and towbar-mounted bike racks aren’t allowed. As a substitute, you’ll have to hold your bikes on the roof. A roof-mounted bike rack can really be fairly useful for holiday-makers, as you’ll be able to nonetheless entry your boot or tow a trailer while transporting your bikes.

For those who’re unsure which mannequin is finest for you, take a look at our bike rack purchaser’s information for some useful data, or pop into your native Halfords retailer the place one among our colleagues shall be completely happy to assist.

2. You should have a tow rope or a tow bar

The place: Serbia

Whereas they’re an non-obligatory further right here within the UK, some sort of towing gear is a authorized requirement in Serbia – you’ll want both a tow bar or a tow rope at the least three metres lengthy, that will help you or one other driver for those who get caught. It’s as much as you which ones possibility you select, however you’ll want one or the opposite always.

Though a tow rope might be the extra handy possibility, tow bars are a useful fixture to have in your automotive – you’ll be able to transport your bike on a towbar-mounted rack, and pull a caravan or trailer, so it could be a function price investing in.

At Halfords, we provide a cell tow bar becoming service, so you’ll be able to improve your automotive with out leaving the home. Learn extra in regards to the course of right here.

3. Flip off the ‘fastened velocity digital camera’ operate of your sat nav

The place: Most EU nations

Driving in an unfamiliar place – particularly a international nation – might be intimidating, so it’s no marvel that many people use sat navs to assist us get round. Most trendy sat navs have a useful ‘fastened velocity digital camera’ operate, or you’ll be able to choose up a devoted velocity digital camera detecting gadget, to warn you to any upcoming velocity cameras so you’ll be able to ensure you’re under the restrict.

These gadgets are completely authorized within the UK, however in lots of European nations, this may get you in large hassle. Radar detectors and every other gadgets that warn you to the placement of velocity cameras are unlawful in France, Italy, Spain, Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal, and extra, and their use can land you a hefty high-quality. You possibly can nonetheless use your sat nav in these nations, however simply you should definitely flip this operate off earlier than you get there.

4. Take a spare pair of bulbs

The place: France and Croatia

There are few issues worse than realising that one among your headlight bulbs has gone. Within the UK, you’ll obtain a hard and fast penalty discover high-quality of £100 for those who drive at night time with just one headlight, and also you’ll have to get it fastened as quickly as attainable.

In France and Croatia, nevertheless, drivers are required to hold a spare pair of bulbs always, in addition to the instruments to vary them themselves. Many different nations suggest you retain a spare set within the automotive, but it surely’s not a authorized requirement. Once more, this rule is a sensible one, and it’s a good suggestion to maintain a spare set of bulbs useful within the UK too, simply in case.

For those who’re unsure what bulbs you want, take a look at our automotive bulb purchaser’s information for a serving to hand.

5. You should have winter tyres and snow chains

The place: Serbia

The Nice British climate might be lower than superb, particularly within the colder months, however Serbia’s winters are particularly freezing. Due to these excessive circumstances, it’s a authorized requirement to make use of winter tyres and carry snow chains between November 1st and April 1st. You’ll discover comparable guidelines in different mountainous areas, like Switzerland, Southern Germany, and the French Alps.

This solely applies if there’s snow or ice on the roads, however since it may be troublesome to anticipate modifications within the climate, we’d suggest swapping your tyres out anyway to be on the secure aspect.

We inventory hundreds of winter tyres in each premium and funds manufacturers, and we are able to match them whilst you wait at your native Halfords storage, or proper in your driveway.


For those who’re heading to Europe this 12 months, take the whole lot you want in a single useful bag with the Halfords Motoring Overseas Equipment. It comprises objects you’re legally required to hold in most European nations, like headlight deflectors, hi-vis jackets, a warning triangle, and extra.

Remember to analysis the motoring legal guidelines of your vacation spot, to ensure you keep secure on the roads. You possibly can take a look at our information on Driving in Europe for extra in-depth recommendation for driving on the continent or head to the authorities web site for the most recent rules.