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.

 

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Don't dazzle

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.

germany-satnav

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.

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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.

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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.

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Be vigilant

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.

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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:

driving-in-germany-my-car-has-broken-down

     

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


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Driving abroad

Be sure to check out our other driving abroad guides:

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