Transport & Car Blog

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Top tips for driving on holiday in Spain

  Monday, 18 June 2012

For many of us driving abroad is a necessity to fully enjoy everything our holiday destination has to offer. If you are heading to Spain for a summer break in the coming weeks heed our advice with these top tips for driving on Spanish roads.


Before you even begin to think about exploring the Spanish mainland by road it is important to ensure that you have sufficient car insurance cover. Some insurance providers will cover you for overseas travel, but you may have to be prepared to pay extra for insurance from your hire car firm if you don’t take our own car overseas.

Flashing headlights

British drivers can often react particularly angrily to being flashed by other drivers’ headlights on a motorway. However, don’t be alarmed if you find yourself being flashed on a regular occurrence on the Autopista – it is the law for Spanish drivers to warn fellow motorists they are about to pass.


When driving onto a Spanish motorway you should *never *cross a solid white line for any reason whatsoever, drivers must wait until the broken line and similarly indicate for pulling out and back in. The Spanish authorities are strictly enforcing this law so be careful.

Drink driving

It is not advised to risk drink driving whatsoever. The Spanish blood alcohol level is 0.5 per mg, equating to one very small beer. Drivers who have been driving fewer than two years, the blood alcohol level is reduced further to just 0.1 per mg – it’s not worth the risk!

Driving licence

British drivers are required to always carry around their driving licence. EC-format pink and green licences are accepted; however the old-style green or any non-European licence must be accompanied by an International Driving Permit. For more information on International Driving Permits visit:

Simon Elstow, head of training at IAM, added: “Rest up before any long journey, prepare your car for the trip, and if you have a passenger get them to remind you that you’re driving on the right-hand side of the road.

“The Spanish issue on-the-spot fines and these can be hefty. Make sure you get an official receipt if you find yourself on the wrong side of the law, so you have a reference in the event you wish to appeal.”

Related posts

The 5 most scenic roads in Europe for this summer
Summer holidaymakers alert: Driving laws in France

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