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Driving in Austria

If you're driving in Austria your checklist requirements are:

  • A valid UK driving licence - both the photo and paper parts. If you don't have a photo licence, you'll need another form of photographic ID, like your passport
  • A GB sticker on the back of your car - unless your car has 'Euro-plates' (number-plates that show a circle of 12 stars on a blue background)
  • Your motor insurance certificate
  • A warning triangle inside the car in case you break down
  • Headlamp converters (stickers you put on your headlights when you're driving on the right, so your lights don't dazzle motorists coming the other way)
  • A reflective jacket within reach inside the car. You'll need to wear this if you stop for any reason outside built-up areas, even if you're just setting up a warning triangle
  • A first aid kit
  • A motorway sticker if you're driving on the motorway - you can buy this at the border and at main petrol stations
  • Winter tyres, if you're driving ing in snow, slush or ice

If you're driving a motorhome with a maximum permitted weight of over 3.5 tonnes, you'll need a GO-Box. This is a small device that automatically registers when you pass a toll. You can either pre-pay when you get the GO-Box, or pay by card after your trip.

You must also:

  • Be 18 or over
  • Wear your seatbelt at all times (this applies to everyone in the car)
  • Wear a crash helmet if you're riding a motorcycle

It's a good idea to have:

  • Spare bulbs for your car's external lights
  • A Green Card - it's a useful back-up to your motor insurance documents and shows you've got the minimum legal level of cover. If you'd like to find out more, contact your insurance company

Other things you should know:

  • You'll have to pay motorway tolls when driving through Austria
  • Petrol, diesel and LPG are readily available. Some stations also offer a lead replacement additive
  • The speed limit is 50kph in built-up areas, 100kph on open roads and 130kph on motorways
  • If you're caught committing a driving offence, you'll be given an on-the-spot fine
  • The drink driving limit is 50mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood (less than the UK limit of 80mg per 100ml). If you've had your licence less than two years, the limit is 10mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood
  • It's illegal to use any radar detection equipment
  • Children under age 12 can't sit in the front unless they have an appropriate seat restraint

Useful guides and maps

Michelin - National Map Austria
Michelin Motoring Atlas: Europe

What RAC can do for you

RAC offers great-value, flexible European breakdown cover tailored to meet your needs. We also offer comprehensive travel insurance, including cover for medical expenses, baggage, personal money and belongings.


Sources Foreign & Commonwealth Office, www.nationaldrivesafe.co.uk, www.drive-alive.co.uk.

Disclaimer: RAC are not responsible for the content of external websites. The information provided is correct as of August 2009 to the best of our knowledge and should be referred to for information purposes only - it should not be relied upon as formal advice. Please always check the current requirements of the country you are visiting before you leave.

There are complex driving laws in Austria, especially for caravan and motor-home owners. See Road travel.

There is a danger of avalanches in some areas. Even during summer time this danger still exists for snow covered areas. See Skiing.

Around 774,000 British nationals visit Austria each year. Most visits are trouble-free.

You are advised not to carry your passport around with you. Leave it in your hotel safe and carry a photocopy of your passport instead. See Local laws and customs.

There is an underlying threat from terrorism. See Terrorism.

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.

Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel. Make sure this covers any winter/mountain activities you plan to undertake.

If you need to contact the emergency services in Austria call 112.

FCO TRAVEL ADVICE - know before you go - fco.gov.uk/travel
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