Driving in a foreign country can be confusing, but we’re here to help you before you journey to France. There is a lot to see and do here, and you can start your 2019 road trip the right way by reading our tips about rules and regulations for those who plan to drive and discover all the country has to offer.
Driving Rules and Regulations in France
General & Safety
- You will need to purchase a Crit’Air or “clean air sticker” when entering many cities in France, including Paris and Lyon. The cost depends on the emissions of your vehicle, and you can order the sticker online.
- Bus lanes are reserved exclusively for buses, taxis and bicycles
- In cities and towns, the right of way is sometimes given to vehicles coming in from the right. When no traffic light or sign is at intersection the vehicle entering from the right has the right of way.
- Almost all roundabouts in France now give priority to traffic already on the roundabout but there are very occasional exceptions (Paris) where people on the roundabout must give priority to cars entering the roundabout.
- Seatbelts must be worn by all passengers.
Types of Roads
- Blue sign marked with an A: Highway/Motorway
- Green sign marked with an N: National highway
- Yellow sign marked with a D: Departmental route
- White sign: Town
- Police: 117 (from a mobile phone) / 17 (from a fixed line)
- Fire: 118 (from a mobile phone) / 18 (from a fixed line)
- Ambulance: 115 (from a mobile phone) / 15 (from a fixed line)
There are different speed limits on French roads depending on whether they are dry or wet. The speeds below are for dry roads, and for wet roads the limits for multilane rural roads are 80 kmh, 100 kmh, and 110 kmh respectively. When weather conditions limit visibility to less than 50 meters, the speed limit is decreased to 50 kmh. Be aware that minimum or recommended speeds are not often marked on roads in France.
|Within city limits:||50 km/hr (30 mph)|
|2-3 lane rural roads:||80 km/hr (50 mph)|
|4 lane expressways (rural):||110 km/hr (68 mph)|
|Motorway:||130 km/hr (80 mph)|
Sixt Car Rental in France
Now that you know some of the road rules, you are ready to explore. There is a lot to see and do in France. Start in Paris, where you can eat exquisite food, visit museums and bask in the history. Drive to Bordeaux for some wine, and then head south to Nice and the French Riviera on the Mediterranean coast for some sun.