Driving Abroad? Be Prepared!
We hate stress, we despise unnecessary stress and we loathe avoidable stress. At the risk of being branded “the cliché queen” preparation really is key. Driving can be a fantastic way to see remote or usually inaccessible areas whilst carrying all that additional baggage that you don’t really need, plus lets be honest, getting a lift from door to door in extreme comfort (despite extensive efforts to prove this to the contrary) is most easily and enjoyably accomplished by car.
Unfortunately for us though, different countries have different ideas when it comes who’s behind the wheel, how old they are and what rules they must conform to. We’ve compiled a few things it’s worth thinking about BEFORE setting off on your journey!
The first is insurance – sorry to be boring but get caught without this and well…a sticky situation is what will await you! Not a might-need but a must-have. Get this sorted before you leave and be sure to check out what level of cover you have in case of an accident. It’s worth looking into this not least to prevent any unwelcome news that you may not be covered when it’s too late.
Now it’s our turn to be obvious, take note of what side of the road you’ll be driving on. Accidents do happen and a brief sense of disorientation can lead to a dreadful outcome. At the risk of more clichés – it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Leading on from this point is another important one; confidence. A nervous driver can easily transform into a nervous wreck in a pressured situation such as driving in a foreign environment, in a different way and with different rules than what they’re used to. Pick a confident driver to drive away from home. The local driving style can vary enormously across different countries and cultures and can be a daunting experience.
Be sure to look at the laws and regulations of the country you are visiting. Unsurprisingly these will vary considerably from place to place and innocent ignorance may not be a viable enough excuse if you get caught out! There may be some surprises that you just wouldn’t think about day to day.
Be aware of car stickers too, if you have plain plates you will need to stick a GB sticker on your boot. Please note though that if you have the new European style number plate (with the stars) you will not need the GB sticker. Another preventative measure is to take a camera or phone with a camera feature on (in this day and age that would be any phone!) to take pictures in case you have an accident.
Finally, driving licence! We all have that last panic before we go away, tickets, money, passports – add driving licence to this and the above and have a happy holiday!
As mentioned car hire insurance is vital when travelling; for cover options and quotes please click here.