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Brit holiday warning as European country suddenly issues £1,300 crackdown



UK holidaymakers could be slapped with fines of up to £1,300 (€1,500) in Germany from June 14 as the country cracks down on motorists during the European Championships. To avoid being hit with penalties going into the hundreds of pounds, experts at Lotus Car Rental have shared six key German driving laws that Brits need to be aware of.

Just like in the UK, British drivers must adhere to speed limits when driving abroad, including in Germany. On the autobahn, there are sections where no speed limit is imposed, indicated by circular white signs with four black diagonal lines.

However, a recommended speed limit of 130 km/h applies to all vehicles weighing less than 3.5 tonnes on some parts of the motorway.

Germany also enforces a minimum speed limit, which is not common in many countries. Drivers should not travel slower than 60 km/h in the slow lane, 90 km/h in the middle lane, and 110 km/h in the fast lane.

According to German driving laws, exceeding or falling below the speed limit can result in fines ranging from £25.75 (€30) to £687 (€800), depending on the degree of the violation, and could even lead to a driving ban of up to three months, reports Birmingham Live.

Traffic lights operate slightly differently in Germany. Before the light changes to green, a yellow signal will illuminate simultaneously with the red light for a brief moment.

This gives drivers time to prepare for the green light. Right turns on red lights are generally prohibited unless a green arrow pointing right is displayed alongside the red light, indicating that right turns are permitted if other vehicles and pedestrians are given right of way.

If you’re at a railway crossing and see a red flashing light, this is a clear signal that a train is approaching. It’s crucial to stop until the light ceases to flash.

During your journey, it’s likely you’ll need to park your vehicle at some point. Hence, understanding Germany’s parking regulations can save you from immediate fines and possible vehicle seizure.

A vehicle is deemed parked if it remains stationary for more than three minutes. Refrain from parking within 10 metres of traffic lights, in bicycle lanes, areas signposted with no-parking signs, blocking building entrances, within 15 metres of a bus stop, or within five metres of pedestrian crossings.

Parking illegally could result in a fine ranging from £4.29 (€5) to £60 (€70). However, different violations carry different penalties.

For instance, parking on a motorway could land you with a hefty €70 fine, while parking near intersections could cost you between £8.58 (€10) and €30.

However, this initial fine is just the start. If you fail to pay within the given timeframe, you could face additional penalties and a higher fine.

Leaving Germany with an unpaid fine could result in being banned from reentering Germany or other EU countries on your next visit. Ensure you have a full and valid UK driving license before setting off in Germany.

Always keep this with you along with your proof of insurance, passport and your V5C certificate, which proves ownership of your car.

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