Driving in Spain
- >How should children travel?
- >How can you find out about the road conditions?
- >How can you pay a fine?
- >What types of fuel are available in Spain?
- >What do you need to drive in Spain?
- >What are the safety measures you should know about in Spain?
- >Do you want to travel to Spain in your car?
- >Do you have to pay to use the roads in Spain?
- How should children travel?
There are certain considerations to be taken into account when travelling with children in a passenger car:It is prohibited to carry children in your arms. No child with a height of less than 136 centimetres may occupy a front seat, unless a device approved for the purpose is used and there is no possibility of the child occupying a back seat. Children under 3 must use an approved restraint system suitable for their height and weight and must always be placed in the back seat. Any person over three years of age with a height of less than one and a half metres must use a restraint system adapted to their size and weight.Driving motorcycles or mopeds with children under 12 as passengers is prohibited.These instructions also apply to taxis, so if you want to travel with a baby in a taxi, you must carry an approved restraint system.
- How can you find out about the road conditions?
In Spain you can find out real-time road conditions through the website of the Department of Transportation (http://infocar.dgt.es/etraffic/). Also, radio stations provide information about roads in their news programmes.
- How can you pay a fine?
Traffic violations sanctioned in the Road Safety Act must always be paid. The competent national sanctioning body is the Directorate-General of Traffic, through its authority officers. When paying these fines there are various options:Using the telephone number 060 (from Spain): the service is in Spanish only. Payment is made by credit card.Online: on the Virtual Headquarters website of the Directorate-General of Traffic in Spain.At branches of La Caixa (Caixabank).At Spanish post offices. At the Provincial Traffic Offices by credit or debit cardIn all cases you will need the file number of the fine.If the fine is paid within 20 calendar days there is a 50% reduction on the amount of the fine.If the fine was issued by a local authority on an urban road, it is advisable to refer directly to the traffic department in the City Council.
- What types of fuel are available in Spain?
Spain's service stations mainly dispense the following fuels:95-octane unleaded petrol 98-octane unleaded petrol Diesel A BiodieselOn the website of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism (http://geoportalgasolineras.es/), you can find all the stations in Spain, the type of fuel supplied and the price.
- What do you need to drive in Spain?
Be 18 years old or over:
To drive in Spain you must be 18 years old or over. To hire a vehicle, 21 years old or over. Many companies also require you to have had your driving licence for a minimum of one or two years. Remember that you must also have a credit card when hiring the vehicle.
A current driving licence:
If you come from a member state of the EU, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein, you only need to carry your current driving licence. If coming from a country other than the above, you must have an International Driving Licence.
Given that conditions may vary, we suggest you contact the Spanish Embassy or Consulate to verify these requirements before you start your trip.
- What are the safety measures you should know about in Spain?
Road safety regulations: there are a series of road safety regulations you must be aware of when driving in Spain. They are as follows: - Talking on a mobile phone is prohibited while driving, unless you use a hands-free system. - Car radios and mobile phones must be switched off while re-fuelling. - A reflective jacket must be used when getting out of the car on the road or the hard shoulder. - Warning triangles must be deployed if the vehicle has stopped on the road or hard shoulder. - The installation and use of devices designed to elude surveillance by traffic police is strictly prohibited. - Overtaking can only be done on the left side of the car which you wish to pass. - It is advisable to use your lights during the day in order to improve your visibility. Furthermore: - Established speed limits must be obeyed: 120 km/h on dual carriageways and motorways, 100 km/h on conventional roads, 90 km/h on all other roads and 50 km/h in built-up areas. - Alcohol levels in the bloodstream must not exceed 0.5 g/l (0.25 mg/l in exhaled air). - Seatbelts must be worn by driver and all passengers, in front and back seats. - Helmets must be worn on motorbikes, mopeds and bicycles. - Parking in public thoroughfares is not always permitted or free. In many cities the parking areas are regulated and subject to payment. Normally these can be identified by the presence of parking meters in the vicinity.
- Do you want to travel to Spain in your car?
Tourists travelling in their own vehicles should be aware that the following documentation is required:
Driver’s license: see section on “What documentation is required to drive in Spain?” Temporary registration certificate: It is valid for six months and you can request it at customs.
If you are a citizen of an EU member state, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein or Croatia, you only need to carry your insurance policy along with a payment receipt showing validity of the policy.
If you come from Albania, Andorra, Bulgaria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Byelorussia, Israel, Iran, Morocco, Moldavia, Macedonian Republic, Rumania, Serbia, Montenegro, Tunisia, Turkey or the Ukraine, you will need to get a Green Card –the International Motor Insurance Certificate.
If you are from a country not mentioned above, you should take out a Frontier Insurance policy (a temporary, obligatory, third party policy for motor vehicles).
Given that conditions may vary, we suggest that you contact the Spanish Embassy or Consulate to verify these requirements before you start your trip.
- Do you have to pay to use the roads in Spain?
In Spain, the vast majority of roads in the national network are free to use. These include motorways (independent roads in each direction and with no intersections at the same level).Nevertheless, there is a series of highways that may require the payment of a toll. These are the motorways. The amount to pay varies in each case, but there are alternative routes that are generally free to use.You can check the highways that require toll payment on this website.Tolls may be paid in cash, by credit card or using electronic toll services (requires installation of a device in the car)Remember that there are S.O.S. posts along the toll roads approximately every one-and-a-half miles.