Top tips for driving in Germany
Bags packed? Check. Excitement levels at fever pitch? Check. Ready to hit the open road? You sure? There are some important things to remember about driving abroad, but don’t worry, because this handy guide should provide the info you need to stay on the right side of the law.
Emergency number 112 is the European version of 999. Only to be used in times of severe distress.
This is really important. Headlights set up for use on British roads could dazzle other drivers when used on the right side of the road so make sure you adjust them before setting off. This is easily done using a convertor kit.
Adjust your sat nav
Have you set your sat nav to be used in Germany? Bear in mind it’s actually illegal to use a speed detector in Germany. So, if your sat nav has this function, make sure it is turned off, or you could face a fine.
Autobahn speed limits
There is no one single speed limit on German Autobahns.However, during bad weather and in some zones, for example those that are particularly accident-prone, there will be sign-posted limits that are often strictly enforced. In other areas, that don’t have a posted speed restriction, there is an advised limit of 130km/h.
Drive on the right
It’s very easy to forget this one but they drive on the right in Germany, so don’t get caught out. Similarly, the left lane of the Autobahn is used for overtaking, so keep an eye on it and don’t overtake on the right like you would in the UK.
It’s fairly common for motorists on the Autobahn to drive at speed and cut in front of you. This takes a little getting used to. Always be aware of fast approaching vehicles in your rear view mirror. You will be expected to get out of the way.
Cruise don't booze
The drink driving limit in Germany is slightly lower than in the UK, and for drivers who have held their license for less than two years or who are under 21, absolutely no alcohol is allowed.
My car has broken down
If things do go wrong, don’t panic. A few phrases (along with our helpful diagram) should ensure you get the message across:
Three more useful phrases:
Do you speak English? Sprechen Sie Englisch?
I am lost! Ich habe mich verfahren!
Can you send me a mechanic/breakdown van Können Sie mir einen Mechaniker/Abschleppwagen rufen?
Germany Driving - Pocket Guide
Insurance from Swinton and Safeguard
- Car Hire Excess Insurance - Protect your finances from costly excess charges on insurance for rental cars
- Car Insurance - A flexible range of policies for a wide range of cars and drivers
- Breakdown Cover - Flexible cover to help get you back on the road
- Touring Caravan Insurance - European cover included as standard
- Motorhome Insurance - European cover included as standard
Be sure to check out our other driving abroad guides:
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