M&S Bank is urging British motorists to check their car insurance policy before hitting the roads this summer after research revealed that nearly one in ten (nine per cent) are planning to drive their car in the European Union (EU) over the next 12 months.
The M&S Bank research revealed that of those that are planning to drive their car in the EU, more than two in five (41 per cent) will do so for a holiday, nearly a third for a mini-break and 18 per cent to visit friends or family.
However, more than a quarter of those planning to drive their car in the EU either aren’t, or don’t know if they are covered to drive in the region. When it comes to breakdown cover in the EU, more than two in five aren’t, or don’t know if this would be covered under their car insurance policy.
In addition, nearly a third aren’t planning to take the time to familiarise themselves with the driving laws of the countries they are travelling to. More than one in ten said this was because they believed it was the same as driving in the UK, while nine per cent said they didn’t have time to familiarise themselves with any differences.
In most European countries, drivers are required to have photographic identification on them at all times and the use of dipped headlights is compulsory in poor daytime visibility. However, there are also more specific laws of the roads across different European countries which drivers should be aware of. For example, in France, vehicles must always carry a breathalyser certified by French authorities, while in Germany, at certain times of the year, it is illegal to drive without winter tyres.
When covering long distances, such as with self-drive holidays, it’s important for motorists to consider breakdown cover that includes both the policyholder and the car across the region. While some insurance policies
will come with EU travel already included, and for extended periods of time, drivers should not assume this is always the case and check that they are covered before they travel.