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When driving in Spain, it is important to familiarize yourself with the country’s driving rules and regulations to ensure a safe and enjoyable journey. Whether you are a resident or a visitor, understanding the main driving rules in Spain will help you navigate the roads with confidence. Here are some of the key rules to keep in mind:

Driving License and Documentation

Before hitting the road in Spain, ensure that you have a valid driving license. If you are a visitor from another country, you can drive in Spain using your national driving license or an International Driving Permit. Additionally, always carry your vehicle registration documents, proof of insurance, and identification with you while driving.

Driving Age and Seat Belts

The legal driving age in Spain is 18 years old for cars and motorcycles. It is mandatory for all occupants of a vehicle to wear seat belts, regardless of their seating position. Children under 12 years old must sit in the back seat and be secured in an appropriate child restraint system.

Speed Limits

Speed limits in Spain vary depending on the type of road and vehicle. The general speed limits are as follows:

  • 120 km/h (75 mph) on highways and motorways
  • 100 km/h (62 mph) on conventional roads with a paved shoulder
  • 90 km/h (56 mph) on conventional roads without a paved shoulder
  • 50 km/h* (31 mph) in urban areas *Now 30 km/h in most cities

It is important to adhere to these speed limits to ensure your safety and avoid penalties.

Alcohol and Drug Limits

Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is strictly prohibited in Spain. The legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit is 0.5 grams per liter of blood for experienced drivers and 0.3 grams per liter for novice drivers and professional drivers. Random breathalyzer tests are conducted by the authorities, and failure to comply can result in fines, license suspension, or even imprisonment.

Mobile Phone Usage

Using a mobile phone while driving is prohibited in Spain, unless you have a hands-free system. It is important to keep your focus on the road and avoid any distractions that may compromise your safety and the safety of others.

Traffic Lights and Right of Way

Observe traffic lights and respect their signals. Red means stop, yellow indicates caution, and green means you can proceed. When it comes to right of way, vehicles already on a roundabout have priority. Additionally, pedestrians have the right of way at pedestrian crossings, so always yield to them.

Parking Regulations

Parking regulations in Spain can vary depending on the city or town. It is important to familiarize yourself with the specific parking rules of the area you are in. Look for designated parking spaces and avoid parking in restricted areas to avoid fines or having your vehicle towed. Save time by downloading a parking app.

Road Signs

Pay attention to road signs and follow their instructions. Road signs in Spain are generally in Spanish, but major highways and tourist areas may have signs in multiple languages. It is advisable to familiarize yourself with common road signs and their meanings before your journey.

Emergency Assistance

In case of an emergency or breakdown, dial the emergency number 112 for assistance. It is important to have a basic understanding of Spanish or have access to a translation app to communicate your location and situation clearly.

By adhering to these main driving rules in Spain, you can enjoy a safe and pleasant driving experience while exploring the beautiful country.


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