All You Need To Know About Driving Abroad


Driving at home can be a challenging task, but it becomes even more complicated when you choose to drive overseas.

Experiencing France can be fascinating, but driving by the Arc de Triomphe at rush hour can be terrifying!  To prepare you for driving overseas, here is an article with information on what you need to know about driving abroad.

Firstly, the majority of countries drive on the right-hand side of the road.  This means that all the controls in a car will be on the left.  If you are from a country with this setting, it is not a problem.

However, if you are not then you will be negotiating roundabouts anti-clockwise instead of clockwise. To avoid any collisions, always be extra careful and highly observant! 

Here are some top tips for driving overseas:
  • Always have your driver’s license, car insurance certificate, and V5 vehicle registration document available.


  • Always ensure that the car insurance policy offers coverage for international driving. This will help lower compare insurance premium.


  • Check whether or not you need an international driving permit to drive in the country.


  • Ask the car insurance company for an international car insurance certificate if you are heading to a non-EU country.


  • Be sure that you have breakdown coverage in your insurance policy.


  • Check that you have travel insurance and review the level of insurance coverage.


  • Check which side of the road you will be driving on.


  • Always carry your EHIC card as this will entitle you to state-offered emergency medical care in all EU countries. The EHIC card will also offer family members emergency medical care if they are injured or ill. You can obtain an EHIC card from post offices, using online applications at the Department of Health, and by reading more at this link.


  • Always adhere to the country’s local speed limits. Attempting to discuss a speed offense with a policeman who does not speak English can be complicated.


  • Know where you are heading and plan your travels. Prepare the journey, carry a map, or use a GPS system if possible.


  • Always review the legal regulations regarding what you should be carrying for each country. For example, some countries require a person to carry a warning triangle, first aid kit, spare lamp bulbs, headlamp beam reflector, and fire extinguisher when traveling. This may seem odd to you, but it is a legal requirement and needs to be followed.


  • Place a GB sticker on the back of your vehicle ensuring that it is clearly visible to other drivers.


  • Obtain a camping card international if you are considering going camping. This international card provides you with liability insurance coverage and lots of camping discounts. Organizations, such as RAC, will be able to supply you with a card for a small fee.


  • Check that you are carrying the correct type of fuel pump adapter for the car. This is important in the case of LPG-fuelled cars because you will also need a special sticker for this type of vehicle. Remember, LPG-fuelled vehicles are not allowed in the Channel Tunnel.


  • Always be sure that the driver of a car with over nine seats is over the age of 21 and has at least 12 months’ experience using a full license.


  • When hiring a car, it is essential that you have your driver’s license and ensure that the company offers comprehensive collision damage insurance.

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