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Tips for First-time Drivers in Europe

Tips for First-time Drivers in Europe
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The holiday season is here again! Months (or years) of planning have finally come down to this. You are finally going to take that backpacking trip and see the best of what Europe has to offer.

Europe is an awesome tourist destination offering a rich and diverse experience for millions of visitors annually. However, like many other international destinations, the different environment can be a bit challenging for would-be tourists. Driving is one of the areas that many first-time visitors often experience difficulties.

tips-for-first-time-drivers-in-europe

    So if you are planning to head out to Europe over the holidays, these helpful driving tips will come in handy when traversing through the vast continent.

    1. Driver’s License and the International Driving Permit

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    drivers-license-and-the-international-driving-permit

      If you are coming into Europe from countries such as the U.S and Canada, you can use your driver’s license in most European countries. However, some require you to have an International Driving Permit (IDP), a small booklet that translates your native driver’s license into 10 languages. The IDP is also accepted in over 150 countries globally.

      It basically resembles passport and contains your photo and additional information lifted from your driver’s license.

      You will need the IDP in Germany, Italy, Spain, and a number of other European countries in addition to your driver’s license. Be sure to check with your consular on whether you will need one for the countries you plan on visiting.

      2. Plan your Driving Itinerary 

      plan-your-driving-itinerary-smartly

        Most tourists often plan their itineraries around large European cities and towns. They then have to drive through nerve-wracking traffic, unfamiliar – and sometimes ruthless – city regulations, and scarce and expensive parking. If you must drive in European cities, try sightseeing on Saturdays and Sundays when most European cities are fairly sparse.

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        3. Insurance

        insurance

          Most countries in Europe will also require you to be insured and have proof of insurance before allowing you to drive. You can buy short-term car insurance for the duration you will be in a specific European country. You can also check with your local insurance provider if overseas trips are covered since a number of them give about 14 days of international vehicle insurance.

          If you can, have additional drivers insured during the trip. The extra insured driver will come in handy when you are tired or unable to drive during the trip.

          4. Rules of the Road

          rules-of-the-road

            The last thing you want to be doing on your trip is spending time in a foreign jail. Always carry your driver’s license, IDP (where applicable), passport, and other relevant documents and produce them when asked by a law enforcement officer.

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            Familiarize yourself with the local road rules for each European country you plan on visiting. Take note of local speed limits which vary in each country you visit. For instance, when driving in the UK, the law requires you to keep you drive under 70mph on motorways. However, countries such as Germany have no speed limits on long stretches of local roads, so beware of speeding motorists in such countries.

            You might also have to keep away from alcohol before getting behind the wheel. Even a single glass of wine or pint of beer is enough, depending on where you are visiting. In Prague, for instance, a blood alcohol level above zero will put you behind bars very quickly.

            Also, don’t forget to carry a car seat for kids under age 12 or under 135cm in height.

            5. Servicing and Breakdown Services

            servicing-and-breakdown-services

              Car servicing providers are often busiest during the holidays, so book your car early to ensure it gets serviced on time. There are plenty of online car rental services that will enable you to book your car and have it serviced before you get there.

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              You should also look into pan-European car insurance policies that cover breakdowns across most European countries.

              The best policy cover isn’t a replacement for being careful and prepared on the road. Carry an emergency kit and ensure the spare wheel is in good condition when receiving the rental. A fire extinguisher can also come in handy so get one even if it isn’t a legal requirement.

              Conclusion

              Driving is undoubtedly one of the best ways to enjoy the sights when touring Europe. Plan ahead before getting behind the wheel in a foreign country and even take a refresher driving course if you need to polish up your driving skills. You don’t want your holiday experience ruined because of traffic infractions that could have easily been avoided with due diligence.

              Featured photo credit: photoduet via freepik.com

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              Vikas Agrawal

              Vikas is the co-founder of Infobrandz, an Infographic design agency that offers creative visual content solutions to medium to large companies.

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              Last Updated on July 12, 2021

              100 Incredible Life Hacks That Make Life So Much Easier

              100 Incredible Life Hacks That Make Life So Much Easier
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              Want to learn some quick and easy life hacks that are easy to do, low cost and saves you time?

              By tweaking little things in your daily life, it can make your life much more convenient!

              Here’re 100 of the most practical life hacks so you can just pick up any of them right away!

              83 tie a small piece of bright colored fabric

                84 write random letter

                  85 use a rubberband

                    86 dorm smell bad

                      87 lean your phone on your sunglassess

                        89 how to waterproof your shoes

                          90 take a picture of the name card

                            91 iron inside out

                              92 old newspaper

                                93 tumble try shoes

                                  keep a card like this

                                    SONY DSC

                                      94 soap bar

                                        95 make a hole

                                          96 drop the battery

                                            97 use a coozie

                                              98 when taking a picture

                                                use a clean dust pan

                                                  try a pants hanger

                                                    use your cellphone light

                                                      use a spring from an old pen

                                                        quick and easy iphone speaker

                                                          user binder clips

                                                            wrap a wet paper towel around your beverage

                                                              put pancake mix in a ketchup bottle

                                                                clean out an old lotion bottle for your beach

                                                                  use a muffin tin to serve condiments at a bbq

                                                                    doritos are great for kindling

                                                                      use nail polish to identify different keys

                                                                        use a hanging shoe rack to store cleaning supplies

                                                                          freeze grapes to chill white wine without

                                                                            use paper clips to organize your cables

                                                                              almost finished your jar of nutella

                                                                                sick of having a box full of tangled

                                                                                  unroll the rim to increase the capacity

                                                                                    cut open toilet paper rolls and use as a cuff

                                                                                      remove the stem from strawberries

                                                                                        turn an old bottle into a simple little cord holder

                                                                                          for iced coffee and iced cappuccino, use frozen coffee cubes

                                                                                            how to fold a fitted bed sheet

                                                                                              tired of snoozing past your alarm

                                                                                                place a rubber band around an open paint can to wipe your brush on

                                                                                                  ut a wooden spoon across a boiling pot

                                                                                                    use bread clips to save flip-flops

                                                                                                      take pictures of friends holding items

                                                                                                        how i always know which headphone is the left one

                                                                                                          put a stocking over the end of a vacuum

                                                                                                            How to make sure you drink enough water

                                                                                                              user a can opener to open blister

                                                                                                                good sandwich guide

                                                                                                                  turn your muffin pans upside down

                                                                                                                    50 pounds of groceries and living on the 5th floor

                                                                                                                      the right way to make a blt

                                                                                                                        add one teaspoon of baking soda

                                                                                                                          38

                                                                                                                            hair straighteners equals to collar irons

                                                                                                                              stack your clothes vertically to see them all

                                                                                                                                the right way to make cookies in the summer

                                                                                                                                  how to clean a blender

                                                                                                                                    the right way to eat a popsicle

                                                                                                                                      use bread clips to label and organize power cords

                                                                                                                                        to get the built up residue off of your shower head

                                                                                                                                          user a hair clip to orgainize long wires

                                                                                                                                            a frozen saturated sponge in a bag

                                                                                                                                              rub stuck zipper teeth with a graphite pencil

                                                                                                                                                use a soda pop tab

                                                                                                                                                  50

                                                                                                                                                    51 How to multiply large numbers in your head.

                                                                                                                                                      52 How to open a bottle if you dont have a corkscrew.

                                                                                                                                                        rub a walnut on damaged wooden furniture

                                                                                                                                                          kids fall out of bed

                                                                                                                                                            use toothpaste to clear up hazy car

                                                                                                                                                              58

                                                                                                                                                                59 keep pizza out while driving home

                                                                                                                                                                  60 put your straw through the tab to keep it from rising

                                                                                                                                                                    hold oreos with a fork so your fingers

                                                                                                                                                                      Never lose your remotes again

                                                                                                                                                                        hiding your emergency money

                                                                                                                                                                          use a bread tab to hold your spot on a roll

                                                                                                                                                                            if you are at a hotel and run out of chargers

                                                                                                                                                                              keep a square of cardboard in a ziplock bag

                                                                                                                                                                                If you need to pee or smoke at a bar

                                                                                                                                                                                  drill holes in the bottom of your garbage

                                                                                                                                                                                    use an accented letter as your passcode

                                                                                                                                                                                      use a squeeze ketchup bottle top with your shopvac

                                                                                                                                                                                        do something unusual when locking the door

                                                                                                                                                                                          when heating leftovers space out a circle in the middle

                                                                                                                                                                                            dont burn yourself in those hard to reach candles

                                                                                                                                                                                              put a small amount of water in a glass when you microwave your pizza

                                                                                                                                                                                                75 use a piece of paper to organize

                                                                                                                                                                                                  use half a pool noodle

                                                                                                                                                                                                    pencil case to store cables

                                                                                                                                                                                                      78 clothespin to hold nail

                                                                                                                                                                                                        79 make blts

                                                                                                                                                                                                          80 take a picture of your fridge

                                                                                                                                                                                                            81 fill plastic water bottles

                                                                                                                                                                                                              82 right ways to eat chips

                                                                                                                                                                                                                99 if your plug keeps failing

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  100 put the banana on the wire

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    88 before you throw away a post it

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Source: Reddit LifeProTips

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      There you go, 100 awesome life hacks that you can try right now to make your life a lot easier!

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