France

 

The Road Rules in France are much like the road rules in the rest of Europe, but like in every European country, there are some specific rules.
The most important difference with the UK is of course the driving direction. As we drive on the left, drivers on the main land drive on the RIGHT!
The speed limits are also in kilometers per hour and not miles. 1 km = 0.62 miles hence 50 km/h = 30mi/h
Make sure you know this by heart!

 

Speed limit 

The following limits apply unless specified otherwise:

  Normal weather Rain/ Snow
 Town 50 km/h
  50 km/h
 Motorway in civilised area
110 km/h
  100 km/h
2x2 Lanes with median
110 km/h  
100 km/h
Motorway/
 Dual carriageways
130 km/h  110 km/h
 Others    90 km/h  80 km/h 

 

Priority Rules

On mountain roads, climbing traffic has priority of those doing down hill.

 

Driving Distance

When driving behind another vehicle, you need to keep a distance of at least 2 seconds. For vehicles that weigh more than 3,50 tons (3.85 oz) or that longer than 22.12 ft (7m) a minimum of 50m distance is required outside of town settings (Roads where the speed lmimit is of 50 km/h)

 

Tolls

On nearly all motorways you need to pay a toll ("péage"). You can calculate the amount of you highway toll on various sites, such as Autoroutes.fr (in English) or ViaMichelin.

 

Safety

Seat belts are to be worn by all occupants at all times
Only children from 12 years old or 1.5m (4'11 ft) can sit in the front passenger seat.
Safety vests are compulsory!


Alcohol Limit

The maximum permitted blood alcohol level is 0.5 milligrams of alcohol per mililitre of blood. This is limited to 0.2 for drivers of a bus or autocar. (UK limit is 0.8)

Mobile phones

Telephone use in the car is only allowed if use of a handsfree set.

 

Other facts

Radar detectors are prohibited in France, punishable with a fee of maximum 30 000 € ( £24,000) and 2 years of prison.