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Travelling by car abroad can make for a cheaper holiday and is a popular choice with those who choose to visit France and other nearby European countries for a holiday. It is a flexible choice of holiday and can be a thoroughly enjoyable experience providing you leave home well prepared.
GEM Motoring Assist has provided motorists with a comprehensive ‘Driving in Europe’ online guide, which includes advice on experiencing different signs, motorways, tolls, and ever-changing regulations. The guide aims to equip motorists for driving in Europe, to ensure they are as prepared as possible for the different driving experiences on the continent.
Follow the tips below to ensure a safer driving experience abroad this summer, or for further information visit the GEM website.
Get a service
Make sure your car has recently been serviced before you embark on a trip abroad, to ensure that your tyres have plenty of tread left in them and that your water and oil levels are topped up to the correct level.
Check what the adjustments are for your headlights in other European countries as these can differ from the UK guidelines. You can buy beam converters from ferry terminals or garages if required but prices will vary so make sure you shop around.
Make sure you have an approved GB plate for your vehicle to notify other drivers that you are from the UK. The GB Euro-Plate has been a legal alternative since 2001 but is not valid outside the EU.
There are several documents you will need to take with you when travelling abroad which include your vehicle registration document, a copy of your MOT certificate (if your car is more than 3 years old) and your insurance certificate as well as necessary contact details for your insurance provider.
Update your licence
Always make sure that your licence is fully up to date before you embark on a trip and that you have the counterpart as well as the photo card.
Check GEM’s website for any special rules and requirements that relate to the specific country you are visiting, for example, in France it is a legal requirement that you carry a reflective jacket which is accessible from the driving seat (ie not stored in the boot of the car).