European Road Rules

We all know that our road systems change when we’re abroad. For instance, everybody bar Malta, Cyprus, Ireland and the United Kingdom drives on the right side of the road, so be sure you remember that important fact before you set off… well, anywhere.

Speed Limits

We’re pretty tame here in the United Kingdom when it comes to the speeds at which we travel at. This is all down to our road safety regulations, however other countries in the continent have a different set of rules when it comes to the maximum speed at which to travel at.

Urban Roads

In France, if you’re driving a vehicle over the 3.5 tonnes you’re only permitted to drive at 50km/h in urban areas. This is the same in Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, and pretty much anywhere else you may be travelling to.

Non-Urban Roads

In non-urban areas you’re only permitted to drive at 80km/h in France, the Netherlands and Germany (so long as your weight is up to 7.5tonnes, any more and the limit is 60km/h). In comparison, you can drive up to 90km/h in Belgium on a dual carriageway.


Travelling on the motorway allows you to get up to speeds of 90km/h in France and Belgium, though only up to 80km/h in Germany and the Netherlands.

Understanding the limits at which you are permitted to drive will help save a tonne of time and reduce the risk of accidents later on.


While the laws on the use of mobile phones in Europe are pretty sound, it’s always good to double check. There shouldn’t be any reason for you to be using your phone whilst in your vehicle.

As one of the leading forms of distraction whilst in your vehicle, it’s illegal in Europe to use your phone whilst in a car, stationary or moving, unless it’s being used by a hands-free set. In France you’re permitted to use a Bluetooth hands-free set whilst Switzerland have incorporated navigation devices, radios and computers to the mix.

Basically if it’s hands-free, you’re good to go; if not, don’t touch.

Safety Equipment

Not many people consider breaking down on the road. It happens when you least expect it so it’s a good idea to be prepared for any circumstances. Different countries in the EU have different rules on what you should always have in your vehicle. These can include a warning triangle, first aid kit, reflective vest and even a fire extinguisher.

No matter where you travel to in Europe, you’re sure to find some of the simple road rules are different. To ensure you have a safe journey, make sure you read up on where you’re going and prepare yourself, especially for expensive fuel costs! Here, at least, we can help. Our effective fuel dispensing and fuel management systems are able to help you monitor the fuel intake of your fleet efficiently and effectively. If you’d like to find out more, contact us today on 01254 291391.

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