First rule for you to remember (should you come from the UK) when planning to drive in France for a carp fishing holiday is: drive on the right side of the road! Be especially careful when setting off from service stations or restaurants on the left side of the road.
Also, bear in mind that you may have to give priority to traffic coming from the right (priorité à droite), especially in built up areas or when on small roads. Usually on large roads you do not give priority to the right, except on the peripherique, the ring road around Paris.
Many anglers I meet have not driven abroad before and apprehend the experience with some dread. In general it is not really that difficult, you just have to stay focused and make sure you concentrate and look more carefully before maneuvering than you would at home. My Tomtom always reminds me when I drive on the left in the UK, so it is a nice touch to have this reminder when in France.As I said the most critical time is when you start off after a break. I’ve heard of a number of accidents caused by this lapse of concentration, especially on quiet country roads. Perhaps you could tape a reminder to the steering wheel… ‘Drive on the Right!’
Before leaving the UK I’d suggest a thorough service of your vehicle to make sure it is in tip top condition before you set off.
There are a number of things you need to bring with you when you venture onto the continent.
5 Things you must bring with you.
5 Things you need to bring with you.
7 Things that are a good idea to bring with you
General Driving Info
Speed limits :
The speed limits in France are somewhat similar to speed limits in other European countries. They are indicated in kilometres per hour.
Highway : 130 km/h, if raining 110 km/h (80 mph, 70 mph)
Dual carriageway : 110 km/h, if raining 100 km/h (70 mph, 60 mph)
Open road : 90 km/h, if raining 80 km/h (55 mph, 50 mph)
Town : 50 km/h (30 mph)
Speed cameras: Most foreign drivers are, for the time being, not targeted by the vast network of automatic speed cameras across France. As of now, only one country (Luxembourg) has agreed to share its car registration database with France. But as European police forces cooperate more and more, new countries are likely to join forces in that field. Besides, if arrested for routine checks by the police or gendarmerie, previous recorded infractions might turn up on the officers’ computer. What’s more, over speeding by more than 50km/h is considered a criminal offense, and will bring you considerable trouble if caught.
Radar and Laser detectors are not allowed in France. Getting caught having such a device in your vehicle means a 1500 euros fine, device impounded (with the car if fixed to it).