If you're driving in Europe for the first time, it's normal to feel a little bit nervous before you set off. You could be driving on the right-hand side for the first time, to different road rules and kilometre speed limits amongst other things. So here's what you need to know to feel confident behind the wheel.
Top tips for driving on the right
- Driving in a hire car abroad – You'll need to get used to a new vehicle before you set off. Pedals will be in the same order, but gear stick and handbrake will be on your right. So familiarise yourself with your hire vehicle.
- Roads differ to those in UK. It can take some getting used to driving on the right. Here's how to master it quickly:
- If you're driving down a narrow lane, pull over to the right to let oncoming vehicles pass.
- On motorways and dual carriageways, the overtaking lane is on your left side.
- Go easy when overtaking. If you need to overtake and you're driving a left-hand drive car, you may find you can't see the traffic around you properly. If you need to, wait for a stretch of dual carriageway.
- On roundabouts, give way to the left and drive anti-clockwise.
- Always be aware for cyclists which are very common in some destinations such as Mallorca and Lanzarote.
- Look at the signs. The best way to check you're on the correct side of the road is looking at road signs – if they're facing you, you're doing OK.
- Give yourself space. Keep a greater distance than you normally would between you and the car in front to make sure you have the time and space to react if you need to.
- Take extra care when you've just finished a familiar task, such as filling up at a petrol station where you could unconsciously slip back into UK driving mode.
- Always wear a seat belt.
- Never drink and drive.