If sun, sea, sand and road trips across Europe are in your future, you may need to know a few things about staying on the right side of the law when you’re on the right-hand side of the road.

Driving in certain European countries is a little different to driving in the UK – the main difference being that some countries require you to carry certain items in your car in case of emergencies. It’s pretty sensible when you think about it, but it’s something that’s easily overlooked when you’re no doubt dreaming of beers in rural Spanish bars or hammocks on sandy beaches. And we wouldn’t want you to risk a fine whilst the exchange rate isn’t at its best!


If you’re off to France, you’ll need a breathalyser. But not just any! By law, you’re required to carry an NF-approved breathalyser such as the Alcosense Single Use NF Breathalyser. This one’s really handy as it comes in a twin pack, so if you happen to use one you have another in the event that you’re pulled over.

If you don’t have a license plate with the GB symbol, GB stickers are another thing you’ll have to pop on your car, no matter where in Europe you’re going.

Several countries either require or recommend a high visibility jacket to be present in your car. It’s a good idea to get one for each member of your family.

Warning Triangles are required in many countries. In case you break down you can place this on the road to alert other drivers. In Spain you’ll need two of these.

If you’re taking a right-hand drive car with you, you’ll need headlamp converters. These change the angle of your headlights’ beam, so you’re not dazzling oncoming drivers when driving on the opposite side of the road.


It’s also strongly recommended in several countries to ensure you have spare bulbs on you in case one of your lights decides to give up the ghost.

To help save you money, we’ve put together a handy Motoring Abroad Kit which contains most of what you’ll need.

We’ve also compiled the checklist below to show you what you need to carry with you when travelling in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Italy, Austria, Switzerland and Poland. If you’re off anywhere else, it’s a good idea to search online to see if you require anything.

But above all, have an amazing time!


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