Basic rules for driving in Spain

Spain is one of the largest countries in Europe. If you want to explore its cities and nature in depth, the best way to travel is by car. Spain has a vast road network, most of which is free. The highway code and road signs are very similar to those in other European countries, so driving in Spain is not very different from driving in other European countries. Seatbelts are compulsory for all passengers and it is forbidden to use a mobile phone while driving.

The basic requirements for driving in Spain are a valid driving licence (accompanied by an international licence in the case of non-European drivers), an official identity document (such as a passport) and a document certifying that the vehicle is insured (rental companies provide this document before picking up the vehicle). The Spanish Highway Code also requires a safety waistcoat and other items to be carried in the car.

Maximum speeds in Spain

The maximum authorised speed on Spanish roads is indicated in kilometres per hour by round signs with a red border. In the absence of specific signs, these speed limits apply according to the type of road:

Urban areas30 km/h
Conventional roads90 km/h
Motorways and dual carriageways120 km/h

Fines for speeding in Spain range from €100 to €600.

Parking in Spain

In most Spanish cities, on-street parking is regulated, particularly in coastal areas and large towns. Regulated parking spaces are marked with blue, green or orange lines. You have to pay to park your vehicle there. The amount and conditions vary from city to city; information is generally available on the parking meter, at least in Spanish and in English.

On-street parking spaces marked with a white line are free; they are generally located in areas away from the city centre and tourist attractions. Parking regulations impose restrictions on caravans and motorhomes, which are not allowed to park in certain areas. There are often special parking areas for these vehicles.

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