Driving in Europe checklist – how to drive in Europe this summer

Jun 25 2019

Driving through Europe can be an amazing experience, and when you live in Europe, it’s not that difficult to achieve. However, there are some tips and pointers to keep in mind before you embark on the journey of a lifetime.

Whether it’s a short trip to the South of France, or a full-on 4 week journey through Eastern Europe, these summer driving tips will hold true. Take a look at how to drive in Europe this summer to ensure that your trip is hassle free.

 

1. Make sure you have insurance

There’s nothing worse than having a little bump in the car and not being insured. Whilst it’s probably nothing that our Car Touch Up Paint can’t fix, if you damage another car abroad and you’re not insured, you could be in serious trouble.

Not to mention that if you get caught, you’ll face an on the spot fine and won’t be able to drive until you’ve fixed it. Avoid this by checking that your car insurance covers you across Europe and update your policy to include it if not – it’s definitely worth it!

 

2. Make sure you have a driving license

It goes without saying that to drive anywhere you’ll need a driving license, but when driving in Europe be sure to take it with you. The chances that you’ll get stopped are slim, but if they ask you for your license and you can’t present it, you’ll be in serious trouble.

In fact, in the UK you’re supposed to have your driving license with you at all times when driving, but most of us ignore that rule. Back home, if you do get asked to present it the likelihood is that you can just nip home and get it. Not in Europe though, so don’t forget to pack your license when driving in Europe.

 

3. Check the oil and water levels in your car

An important but easily forgotten check to do before embarking on your travels. This one is especially important in hot weather, where a lack of these two checks could cause your car to overheat. Simply look at the oil and water levels before you start your trip and ensure that they’re filled up and good to go.

 

4. Think about getting breakdown cover

Getting breakdown cover isn’t an essential when driving in Europe, but my god will it help you out if you do break down. If the thought of getting stuck on the side of a road for 4 hours in Croatia is enough to send you into a hot sweat, then get breakdown cover to be on the safe side.

This one also depends on your car. If you’re driving a 19 plate that’s only got 5,000 miles on it, you’re probably going to be fine. However, if your car is 5+ years older, it’s a good idea to get covered.

 

5. Practice driving on the right somewhere quiet

When driving in Europe, you’ll need to get used to driving on ‘the wrong side of the road’. It can be a really weird experience, especially if you’ve never done it before, so it’s worth stopping in a car park or on some quiet roads to get 5 minutes of practice in before you hit the big roads.

 

6. Check your MOT is up to date

Checking your MOT is one of those things that can slip your mind from time to time. However, before you start driving in Europe you need to check you have your MOT. Obviously it’s illegal to drive without an MOT, but it’s also essential to ensure that your insurance works. Don’t be without it when you drive in Europe this summer.

 

7. Be identified

Did you know that if you’re taking your own vehicle over, it needs to display a GB sign? Most number plates already have the EU/GB sign, in which case you’re covered. However, if your car number plate doesn’t have the identification then you’ll need to buy a GB sticker before you start driving in Europe.

 

8. Check your tyre pressure

Tyre pressure affects everything from control of the vehicle, running costs and ultimately your safety, so it’s worth checking it before you take a big journey. Find out how to check by heading over to our blog article on How To Check Your Tyre Pressure Before a Long Journey.