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Road Rules

Main road 130 normal 110 wet Town 50
Open road 110 normal 90 wet


No drivers under 18 even with UK licence.
E111 form for emergency medical treatment.
(0800 555 777)
Wear rear seat belts.
No children under 10 in front seats.
Seat belts compulsory when fitted.

Autres Directions = other directions,
Cédez le passage = give way,
Chaussée deformer = uneven road/ temporary surface,
Sortie = exit,
Déviation = Diversion,
Gravillons = loose chippings,
Passage protégé = your right of way,
Péage = Toll,
Priorité piétons = give way to pedestrians,
Rappel = reminder,
Rids de poules = potholes,
Toutes Directions = All directions,
Vous n'avez pas la priorité = Give way.



Drinking and Driving - the limit is LOW - 0.5g/litre (U.K. is 0.8g/litre).


Make sure you have: Insurance documents, Green Card and a "European Accident Statement" form, Log Book, MOT certificate, Driving Licence, Red warning triangle, spare bulbs, first aid kit, spare cash or Eurocheques for speeding fines (credit cards not accepted), display GB sticker (at least 6.9in by 4.5in). Please use beam converters so that you don't dazzle oncoming drivers - check your car manual for more details.

Ensure that your car tyres have at least 1.6 millimetres of tread, the AA recommend a minimum of 2mm.


Toll motorways 130km/h (80 m.p.h.), wet 110km/h (70 m.p.h.), Non Toll Motorways 110km/h (70 m.p.h.), other roads 90 km/h (55 m.p.h.), built up areas 50km/h (30 m.p.h.) - the town name starts the limit, a bar through the town name marks the end of the limit.

The French Government have recently begun a serious crackdown on bad driving. Any foreign driver caught doing 25km more than the official speed limit will suffer the immediate loss of their licence. Other speeders will have to pay a heavy fine immediately.

Speed Cameras are more widely used.

If you have recently passed your driving test, please note that in France you cannot exceed 90 km/h for the first two years after passing your test. You cannot drive in France until you are 18.

Normally Police station a "hidden" car on a bridge or in a lay-by about 5km from a toll gate. ON-THE-SPOT fines are the order of the day. If you cannot pay immediately your car can be impounded. They can monitor your speed by checking the times on the ticket. They only issue tickets if you are a resident of that country.


Police collect fines on the spot. Alcohol between 0.05 - 0.08, 135 euro (maximum fine 4,500 euro). A 30% reduction for minor offences may be granted if paid on the spot or within 24 hours. If you feel you are not at fault, you will be asked to pay a deposit (amende forfaitaire). A receipt must be issued showing the amount paid. Similar rules exist in Belgium.
Speeding fines -the average fine is about 135 euro. Range from 750 euro - Exceeding limit by between 20 - 40 km/h, to 1,500 euro - 50 km/h more than limit.




Free on roads with a dotted white line or no markings at all.
Orange dotted lines - pay at meter (horodateur).
Do not park against kerbs painted yellow.
Parking is forbidden in the centre of many major Many towns have a 'Zone Bleu' parking area, which requires a blue disc windscreen sticker which can be bought from the local tobacconist or garage.

Emergency Numbers:
Fire 18 - Police 17 - Ambulance 15






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