Country-specific travel advice
Select the country you will be travelling in to see motoring information and advice, including any accessories you may need to purchase. Don't forget the RAC provides European breakdown cover while you're driving in Europe.
Driving in Greece
National driving licences conforming with the model in Annex 9 of the 1949 Convention or in Annex 6 of the 1968 Convention or with the European Communities’ model are accepted.
Visitors may ride mopeds or motorcycles of any cylinder capacity or drive private cars in Greece if they have reached the minimum age required in their country of residence. A foreign driving licence does not entitle the holder to drive in Greece until the age of 18yrs old.
International Driving Permits (1949 or 1968) are recognised.
When driving in Greece the following documents should be carried:
- Full, valid driving licence*
- Proof of insurance/green card (third party or above)
- Proof of ID (passport)
- Proof of ownership (V5C certificate)
While driving in Greece you are required by law to carry the following items. Hefty on-the-spot fines can be issued for failing to carry specific items:
- Headlamp beam deflectors (depending on your car, you will either need deflector stickers or have to adjust the beam manually)
- Vehicles registered in Greece or abroad must carry a warning triangle
- Fire extinguisher/first aid kit are compulsory on board private vehicle
- Motorcyclists: riders and all passengers of motorcycles must wear crash helmets
Rules of the road & regulations
Rules of the road
Overtaking & passing
Drive on the right, overtake on the left.
Overtaking is prohibited when approaching an unguarded level crossing and if the vehicle has stopped for safety reasons.
Outside towns, traffic moving along a main road has priority at intersections. In towns, vehicles coming from the right have priority. Vehicles approaching roundabouts must give way to vehicles coming from the right.
Warning of approach
All motor vehicles must be fitted with an audible warning device with a low pitched, regular tone. Multi-toned sirens, hooters and whistles are strictly prohibited.
The horn must not be used in towns, unless it is the only means of avoiding an accident.
Inventories are not required unless the trailer contains special equipment.
Height: 4 metres
Width: 2.55 metres
Overall length: 18 metres (vehicle + trailer)
It is compulsory to wear seat belts on all seats equipped with a belt. If a visitor is exempted from wearing the belt on medical grounds, he must carry the medical certificate of exemption accompanied by a translation into Greek.
Travelling with children
Children under 3 years must be placed in a suitable child restraint. Approved child restraints are those conforming with standard ECE R44/03 (or later).
Children between 3 and 11 years, measuring less than 1.35m must be seated in an appropriate child restraint for their size.
From the age of 12, children measuring over 1.35m can wear an adult seat belt.
Placing a rear-facing child restraint in the front passenger seat is allowed only on condition that the passenger airbag is deactivated.
|Ordinary Roads||Motorways||Built-up Areas|
|Moped||40 km/h||-||40 km/h|
|Motorcycle||70 km/h||90 km/h||40 km/h|
|Car||90/110 km/h||130 km/h*||50 km/h|
|Car with Caravan or Trailer||80 km/h||80 km/h||50 km/h|
|Lorry up to 3.5t||80 km/h||90 km/h||40 km/h|
|Lorry over to 3.5t||80 km/h||80 km/h||40 km/h|
|Lorry carrying dangerous goods||50 km/h||50 km/h||40 km/h|
* Maximum speed limit of 130km/h allowed on motorways except when a road sign indicates a reduced speed limit
The Greek police is authorised to impose fines in cases of violation of traffic regulations, but fines may not be collected on the spot by the police. Motorists must pay the fines within 10 days otherwise legal proceedings will be started.
Confiscation of vehicles
Confiscation of vehicles takes place only in the case of very serious offences and only after a court of law has issued such a decision.
Regulations concerning standing and parking conform to the provisions of the 1968 Convention on Road Traffic.
Enforcement of parking regulations
Wheel clamps are not used in Greece.
Vehicles can be towed away by the police. The driver must pay a fine for its release.
The international 3-colour traffic light system is used.
Legal limit: 0.05% (equivalent to 0.25 mg per litre of breath)
A lower limit of 0.02% (0.10 mg per litre of breath) applies to novice drivers who have held a driving licence for less than two years, to motorcyclists and to drivers of commercial or business vehicles.
If the amount of alcohol in the blood is 0.05% or over, this constitutes a criminal offence and penalties are imposed.
The police may impose a test on any suspected person in order to establish if he is under the influence of alcohol. Drivers suspected of being under the influence of alcohol are compelled to accept this test and their refusal may lead to penalties including imprisonment, a fine and the withdrawal of their driving licence.
Availability of fuel
Petrol and lubricants are readily available in all towns and villages. LPG may not be used in private cars, only in taxis.
Means of payment
Some petrol stations accept credit cards.
Useful guides and maps
Michelin - National Map Greece
Michelin Motoring Atlas: Europe
Source: All information in this document is sourced from the AIT (Alliance Internationale de Tourisme) & the FIA (Federation Internationale de l'Automobile) and, to the best of the RAC’s knowledge, is correct at the time of publication (May 2016.)
- Still current at:
- 8th Dec 2016
- Updated at:
- 10th Nov 2016
- Latest update:
- Latest Update - Summary and Terrorism: Grenade explosion in central Athens outside of the French Embassy on 10 November 2016. One police officer received minor injuries. You should remain vigilant.
Information and advice for British nationals travelling and living in Europe, following the result of the EU referendum.
A grenade was thrown by two individuals on a passing motorbike outside the French Embassy in central Athens on 10 November 2016. A policeman received minor injuries. No group has claimed responsibility for the attack. See Terrorism.
President Obama will visit Athens on 15-16 November 2016. The Greek police will mount an extensive security operation which is likely to cause significant disruption around the city in the course of the visit.
There are regular strikes, sometimes called at short notice, that can cause disruption to public transport (including air travel and ports).
Demonstrations take place regularly in central Athens, and have also taken place in other towns and cities. There may also be demonstrations in reaction to developments in Greece’s negotiations with its international creditors. You should avoid all demonstrations and follow the advice given by local security authorities. See Major pre-planned strikes and demonstrations
The currency of Greece is the euro. When travelling outside the UK you should take more than one means of payment with you (cash, debit card, credit card).
Greece imposed capital controls on 28 June 2015 and there are still restrictions on some banking services in Greece. The Greek government continues to limit withdrawals using cards issued by Greek banks to €60 per day. However, these daily amounts can now be withdrawn cumulatively on a weekly basis.
You can withdraw cash using your UK card up to the daily limit imposed by the Greek banking system (usually €600), or the daily limit imposed by your card issuer - whichever is the lower amount. The system for paying with debit and credit cards for retail transactions continues to function.
There’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to exchange sterling for euros in Greece. There are no restrictions on taking unspent euros out of Greece at the end of your stay.
There has been a dramatic increase in the number of migrants and refugees arriving on Greek islands, including Lesvos, Kos and Samos, and seeking to continue their journey via Greece to other EU countries. The British Embassy is keeping the situation under review, but at present there are no reports of any specific risks to British nationals visiting these islands or at border crossing points. You can find general information and advice about safety and security in Greece in this travel advice.
The Greek authorities have enhanced border security. Anyone attempting to facilitate or transport an illegal migrant or anyone inciting disorder or violence will be arrested and dealt with by the authorities.
There is a general threat from terrorism and acts of political violence. See Terrorism
The emergency services number in Greece is 112. Calling 999 from a UK mobile in Greece will automatically transfer you to the Greek emergency services.
British nationals make around 2.7 million visits to Greece to every year. Most visits are trouble-free, but you should take sensible precautions to protect yourself and your belongings. See Crime
Carry a copy of your passport or other photographic ID which confirms British nationality at all times.
The Greek police won’t accept rowdy or indecent behaviour, especially where excessive drinking is involved. Greek courts impose heavy fines or prison sentences on people who behave indecently. Your travel insurance may not cover you after drinking. See Local laws and customs.
Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.
The Overseas Business Risk service offers information and advice for British companies operating overseas on how to manage political, economic, and business security-related risks.
British Embassy Athens
Office: British Embassy Athens
Street Address: 1 Ploutarchou Street
ZIP Code: 10675
Telephone: (+30-21) 07272600
Fax: (+30-21) 07272720/23
British Consulate Heraklion
Office: British Consulate Heraklion
Street Address: 16 Papa Alexandrou Street
ZIP Code: 71202
Telephone: (+30-281) 0224012
Fax: (+30-281) 0243935
British Consulate Thessaloniki
Office: British Consulate Thessaloniki
Street Address: 21 Aristotelous Street
ZIP Code: 54624
Telephone: (+30-231) 0278006
Fax: (+30-231) 0283868
British Consulate Zakynthos
Office: British Consulate Zakynthos
Street Address: 5 Foskolos Street
ZIP Code: 29100
Telephone: (+30-2695) 022906, 048030
Fax: (+30-2695) 023769
British Consulate Hermoupolis
Office: British Consulate Hermoupolis
Street Address: 8 Akti Petrou Ralli
ZIP Code: 84100
State : Syros
Telephone: (+30-2281) 082232, 088922
Fax: (+30-2281) 083293
British Consulate Kos
Office: British Consulate Kos
Street Address: 8 Annetas Laoumtzi Street
ZIP Code: 85300
Telephone: (+30-242) 021549
Fax: (+30-242) 025948
British Consulate Corfu
Office: British Consulate Corfu
Street Address: Menekratous 1
ZIP Code: 49100
Telephone: (+30-2661) 030055
Fax: (+30-2661) 037995
British Consulate Rhodes
Office: British Consulate Rhodes
Street Address: Pavlou Mela 3
Postal Address : PO Box 47
ZIP Code: 85100
Telephone: (+30-2241) 027247, 022005
Fax: (+30-2241) 022615
British Consulate Patras
Office: British Consulate Patras
Street Address: Votsi 2
ZIP Code: 26221
Telephone: (+30-261) 0277329
Fax: (+30-261) 0225334