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Driving in Spain

Many of the same driving rules apply in Spain as in the UK, but there are some key differences to bear in mind to avoid any unnecessart mistakes when driving.

Rules of the road

  • Stick to the right: Unlike the UK, in Spain you drive on the right hand side, so stay alert, especially when pulling out of junctions.
  • Give way to the right: Drivers need to give way to vehicles approaching from their right at cross roads and intersections.
  • Quiet that horn: Don't use the car horn unless it is completely necessary - it is only for emergency use, particularly in urban or built up areas.
  • On-the-Spot fines: Spanish police are free to fine motorists for any driving infractions. For visitors and tourists, these will have to paid immediately or the car could be confiscated.

Important equipment for your car

You are legally required to carry at least one of each of the following items in your vehicle when driving in Italy:

  • Reflective jacket - you could be fined if you are found on the hard shoulder without one
  • Warning triangle - for placing on the car should you need to stop unexpectedly

Keep change for tolls

Make sure to keep money handy on any long drives, as it is possible that you will incur tolls when driving on most of Spain's major motorways and some smaller roads. The AA has a useful guide showing the cost of tolls for cars in Spain, so you can plan and prepare for the extra costs before you set off.


In case of an emergency, you can contact your embassy for help:

British Embassy Madrid - +34 917 146 300

British Consulate Alicante - +34 913 342 194

British Consulate-General Barcelona – +34 913 342 194

British Consulate Ibiza - +34 913 342 194

British Consulate Las Palmas de Gran Canaria - +34 913 342 194

British Consulate Malaga - +34 913 342 194

British Consulate Palma de Mallorca - +34 913 342 194

British Consulate Santa Cruz de Tenerife - +34 913 342 194


Date published 01/04/2012

Information correct as of August 2014.

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