All countries have different driving laws and France is no different. Besides specific driving laws, it is also important to know the different quirks drivers in specific countries have. As you will see, France is not the friendliest of countries to drive in and you should be prepared for this. Let’s take a look at some of the things you need to know if you are planning to go driving through France.
If you are going to be driving in France, there is one new law that you must be aware of. Whether driving a car or a motorcycle, you must carry a breathalyser with you. If you don’t have one on you, you will be fined 11 Euros on the spot. It is always a good idea to have two on you, because it is possible that you will get pulled and breathalysed more than once on a single journey. The only problem is that most stores in France have sold out of their kits so it can be quite hard to stick to this rule.
Some stores sell multiuse tests, which cost around 50 Euros. Leaves those firmly on the shelves and opt for the single use ones that are only about a Euro a piece. Unless you are a serious drunk driver, there is no need to have the multiuse one. Oh and by the way, it is not true that you have to test yourself after every drink.
Speed Camera Detectors
A lot of people have a speed camera detector. Switch it off if you are on French roads! It is highly illegal to own one and it can cost you 1,500 Euros if you have one and get caught. Naturally, some TomToms and other satellite navigation systems have a list of speed cameras installed in their software. Technically, these are now illegal. However, you should update your software map for France and you will then find that you will no longer be warned about the exact locations of the speed cameras, but you will rather be told that a certain area is in a “danger zone”.
Driving with Children
If your child is under 10 years old, he or she is not allowed to travel in the front seat of the car, with the exception of babies in appropriate baby carriers. In the back, children must have a booster seat appropriate for their age or height. They must wear a seatbelt, of course, as should anybody who sits in the back of the car. Again, if you don’t wear a seatbelt (either in the front or the back), you will be charged a hefty fine.
Other Things to Know
French drivers, as stated earlier, are not the friendliest. In big cities like Paris or Marseille, you will find that people will gladly bump into your car if it means it enables them to squeeze into a parking spot. Always, always give priority to the right. Miss that little rule and you are likely to have a very angry French person chasing you down the road.
Driving through France can be an enjoyable experience, but you need to know what you are doing. Above all make sure you hire a reliable car, for instance through erentals.co.uk.