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Driving in Europe


Tony Bennett

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Tony Bennett

I see that the club regularly does trips abroad into Europe.

I have hired cars abroad but never driven my own car there.

 

I was reading recently about all the kit required for France and the things that are not allowed and also the costs of driving on french motorways and wondered, is the same to be said for other places like Spain or Portugal?

 

Does the club have any guidance please?

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I think the AA site shows the comparisons between all the different countries and what is required by law to have in the car.

 

We drive across France twice a year (Ski and Summer) and, to be honest, most of the kit is either standard on modern cars or common sense. Triangles and the like, high-vis vests and spare bulbs all make sense. Breathalysers not so much, but think France may have repealed that law not too long after they announced it. In Winter, snow socks or snow chains a necessity and I think law when driving up into the mountains, 4WD or not.

 

As for costs, we use a tag and that saves an enormous amount of time through the tolls, especially in ski season. If you are not planning on doing this regularly, then a credit card and some patience will do the same job :)  As an indication, it is around £100-£130 for a round trip to the French Alps and I think about £60-£80 to La Rochelle or Royan (west of France).

 

The one consolation is that fuel off-motorway in France is normally much cheaper than in the UK.

 

Hope that helps.

 

Mark

 

 

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Hi Tony, it is a moving target ( how many and type of breathalysers, position of hi-viz etc) so best to check right before you go with the likes of Halfords, etc. They usually have handy checklists.

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Hi Tony,

 

will not speak on behalf of the Club, but as I am getting ready for yet another road trip across Spain and Portugal (and back!) I will share some info with you.

 

You can check this site, that I find very useful: http://ec.europa.eu/transport/road_safety/going_abroad/spain/index_en.htm. One can simply chose the countries and check all sorts of info.

 

The only item I believe is somehow different and you need to be aware, namely in Spain, is the need for 2 warning triangles. From the info listed on the above site, I believe is up to date.

 

Will let others chime in on the topic of France, since I have no experience driving there with a UK registered vehicle.

 

Best reagards,

Hugo

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Tony Bennett

Thanks everyone.

 

One of the things I fancy doing once I'm jeeped up is to drive to either Portugal/Spain/South of France.

I have yet to sit down and work out cost comparisons between driving the whole way or going on the ferry to santander.

 

I do wonder what route was used for say, the Corsica trio and if it was economically worth taking ones own vehicle or renting at the other end.

 

Early days yet.

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Tony,

 

I am Portuguese and I am happy to give you some tips, if you want. Or any of the club members!

 

Just send me a PM and we can discuss it further.

 

Hugo

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Tony Bennett

Tony,

 

I am Portuguese and I am happy to give you some tips, if you want. Or any of the club members!

 

Just send me a PM and we can discuss it further.

 

Hugo

 

 

Am happy to once I get nearer to going there, appreciate the offer of assistance.

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Am happy to once I get nearer to going there, appreciate the offer of assistance.

 

Happy to help!

 

Also take into account that, if your trip is longer than 30 days OR for peace of mind, you need to take a Green Card to prove your insurance policy is valid. Especially in Portugal! The highway patrol can be a bit nasty at times...

 

Also, on your original question on the OP, I think if you avoid the high-season and a Commodore suite in the ferry, UK - Santander might be a bit less exhaustive, cheaper and "safer" than driving along the entire west coast of France. Of course, you loose the opportunity to do some pretty outstanding scenic driving!

 

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Tony Bennett

Ah, but i can drive the scenic route on the way back :icon_e_biggrin:

 

Shame there isnt a halfway down the wesy coast ferry route

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The only advise I have to offer is don't even glance at your mobile phone whilst in France. Those boys will come out of nowhere and read you the riot act about it. I got a one off exception after they made me empty the Jeep (just to take the piss) and verify I was not carrying guns and all that shit.

 

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Thanks everyone.

 

One of the things I fancy doing once I'm jeeped up is to drive to either Portugal/Spain/South of France.

I have yet to sit down and work out cost comparisons between driving the whole way or going on the ferry to santander.

 

I do wonder what route was used for say, the Corsica trio and if it was economically worth taking ones own vehicle or renting at the other end.

 

Early days yet.

 

 

There isn't much in it in terms of cost to the Pyrenees with a one night stop over in France. It's still typically cheaper via Calais

 

Tolls to Andorra from Calais are around €70

It's around 400 miles more via Calais to Andorra as an example.

The ferry from Portsmouth typically I have found is around £250 to £400 more depending on type of ticket etc

 

So more fuel, 1 nights hotel and €70 tolls but £250 to £400 cheaper and that's on the Eurotunnel. If you take a ferry from Dover instead you can save another £80 to £100.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

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One thought, if you happen top collect Tesco Clubcard vouchers, you can use these to against the euro tunnel.

 

Also, for driving through France, you'll need to have hi-vis vests, warning triangle, spare bulb kits, first aid kit and breathalyser kits.

 

Also remember to have a copy of your V5 and insurance certificate.

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do not take a radar detector with you, the fine is very heavy, just for having one in the car. I think it was Pete that is on this site got caught with one, not only did he have a huge fine, he was in the local cop shop for a while, and they made him pay them to destroy it.

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