Let’s talk about car polishing compounds and go old school and use one of my personal favourites, Farecla G3 Paste....
Does the thought of being behind the wheel in mainland Europe send you into a cold sweat? The roundabouts, language and unfamiliar driving etiquette make many UK drivers uneasy at the prospect or worse still, unwilling to even give it a try. Add in some native driving legislation and over-zealous law enforcers, and the holiday could soon lose its appeal.
At Part Monster we want our customers to set out across the European landscape with confidence while avoiding unnecessary on-the-spot fines, so we’ve put together some tips for driving in Europe that will make sure you’re fully prepared.
While many regulations are the same across the continent, some countries have their own rules. You should research these carefully before setting off. For example, in some countries, you are required to use your daytime running lights. In others such as France, it is obligatory to have a breathalyser in the vehicle. Make sure you know exactly what the legal requirements are.
Check that your motor insurance covers the cost of damage to your own vehicle, not just the third-party cover that is provided under EU rules.
If you're planning to drive in a European country which isn't part of the EU or EEA, you may need to ask your insurer for a ‘green card’ which is an international insurance certificate that proves your policy provides minimum cover.
UK breakdown cover is rarely valid overseas, so check if it is before you go, and if it isn’t contact your provider to upgrade to European cover if you’re only going to be away for a short time.
If you don’t already have breakdown cover, and you're only likely to be away for a few days a year, take out a cheap UK policy and then upgrade it just for a few days. You should, however, check that option’s available before taking out the policy.
There is a list of items that you’re legally required to have in, or on, your vehicle when driving in Europe:
Headlight converters are stickers that adjust the dipped beam of your headlights. They’re required because the headlights of cars designed for driving on the left-hand side of the road will dazzle oncoming drivers in countries where they drive on the right. It's a legal requirement in most European countries, and you could receive a fine if you don’t comply. In some cases, it will even invalidate your insurance. The headlight converters come with fitting instructions and are compatible with a wide range of vehicles. Depending on the make of your car, you may need to ask a garage to adjust your headlights for you so don’t leave this until the last minute! It is advisable to put them on when you get onto the ferry and take them off on the return sailing so that you are compliant while in the UK and in mainland Europe.
Have fun on your trip but be mindful of the varying speed limits on the motorways in Europe, and the high number of tolls. Plan your journey carefully, be prepared, and there will be no need for the cold sweat! Bon voyage!