Everything you need to know about driving abroad

Looking to drive a car overseas?

As well as making sure you’ve filled up with fuel, packed your passport and EHIC card and all your gear, there are some specific things you need to bear in mind.

If you haven’t driven on foreign roads before it can be a little daunting and you need to be aware of the rules and regulations as well as which side of the road to drive on.

So we’ve put together a Regal Rentals guide to everything you need to know if you’re planning on driving abroad over the coming months.

• If you are hiring a vehicle, choose one you feel comfortable with. Consider driving an automatic car – rather than a manual – which will give you one less thing to think about or a smaller car which can be easier to manoeuvre and park.
• Pack an up-to-date map in the car and consider using a GPS to help prevent you getting lost.
• Get the right insurance cover. If you’re driving in another country, you need to let your insurance company know and check if your policy covers you.
• Check to see if you have European breakdown cover with you policy and upgrade it if you don’t.
• Remember to take your driving licence. You can use your UK driving licence to drive within the EU/EEA but you will need an International Driving Permit if you want to drive outside of these countries. Ask your local Post Office for details.
• Check what sort of fuel the vehicle requires.
• Be aware that compulsory items to be carried in the vehicle and speed limits may vary by country and drivers should check in advance.
• Such things as Warning Triangles, Hi Visibility Vests for each passenger, First Aid Kits and replacement bulbs are the responsibility of the driver/hirer of the vehicle.
• Before you set off, it can be helpful to check the Foreign & Commonwealth Office website for safety advice www.fco.gov.co.uk
• Consider taking out an Excess Reduction Policy. This is optional and the cost varies depending on the length of hire but it can give added peace of mind.
• Give yourself plenty of time to get used to driving a different car. When you’re sitting on the opposite side to what you’re used to it can feel strange. Check where all the controls are so you can familiarise yourself with the layout.
• Do some research before you travel. For example, it’s useful to be aware of the different speed limits in the country you are visiting.
• Relax. Don’t feel that you have to leave the airport car park and drive straight on to the fast lane of the motorway or dual carriageway. Take your time to get used to the car, the roads and driving on the opposite side.
• Don’t overdo the driving. Build in regular stops so you can get out of the car, stretch and refuel. Try not to drive when you are tired or children are fractious.

At Regal Rentals, we pride ourselves on looking after all our customers. So, when you take one of our cars abroad, we encourage you to book well in advance so that we can supply you with a Travel Pack which includes the following:
• A VE103 form – this is the authority that you need in order to take a car out of the country. You will need this certificate to show that you are allowed to use a hire vehicle if you’re driving it abroad.
• A Green Card – this is vital for insurance cover. Recognised internationally, a Green Card acts as proof of insurance in Europe. It is useful if you need to make a claim or swap details with the police or another driver. The Green Card system comprises 47 countries, including all in the EU.
• Motor Assist – Your breakdown cover. Hire a car with us and we provide you with this essential breakdown cover.
• The appropriate approved National GB sticker which needs to be displayed on the vehicle and any caravan or trailer unless the registration plate displays the GB Euro symbol.

If you will be hiring a car to drive overseas then please have a chat to our friendly and efficient staff who can help you get the car you want – at the price you want.

For more information it can be useful to visit the following website:

https://www.gov.uk/driving-abroad
https://www.gov.uk/taking-vehicles-out-of-uk/for-less-than-12-months
https://www.theaa.com/european-breakdown-cover/driving-in-europe/country-by-country
https://www.rac.co.uk/drive/travel/driving-abroad/

What every employer needs to know about Duty of Care risk prevention

Did you know that your cars, vans and trucks are classed as places of work?

In recent years, the British Government has got tougher on enforcing health and safety legislation.

Today, the law says that a vehicle is a place of work and that employers and managers have a ‘duty of care’ under the Health & Safety at Work Act to ensure the safety of everyone working on their behalf – including drivers.

For businesses that use vehicles at work, the new law means that it is the employer’s responsibility to ensure a vehicle is roadworthy. This applies to company cars, grey fleet or even an employee’s own vehicle.

Below is a list of what employers need to ensure:

  • The vehicle is in a roadworthy condition
  • There is a current MOT certificate for all vehicles over three years old
  • The driver is licensed to drive
  • The vehicle is fully insured for business use
  • The car is regularly serviced
  • The employee is carrying out regular basic maintenance checks
  • The employee is a member of a roadside recovery organisation

Whether your business needs a short or long-term car hire, using the Regal Rentals service means that your car is our duty and we make the safety of it our responsibility. Our vehicles are always less than 18 months old and we ensure they are fully maintained and serviced.

With Regal, you are guaranteed a vehicle with the latest safety and security features.