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Holiday essentials: eBay reveals Brits who drive their car abroad this summer risk being fined due to EU knowledge gap


Sep 12, 2023 #Mirror
  • eBay research reveals knowledge gap for UK motorists driving abroad, with 43% unaware of the need to display a ‘UK’ sticker when driving their car overseas
  • Almost a third of UK drivers surveyed didn’t know motorists are required to carry a warning triangle in their car when travelling in the EU
  • More than a quarter of participants in the study wrongly believed it is mandatory to carry a fresh, unused disposable breathalyser when driving in France

London, 17th July 2023 – With a third of Brits visiting Europe this year and planning to drive*, eBay has uncovered a knowledge gap which could put UK motorists at the risk of being fined.**

Many drivers travelling to Europe are unaware of local motoring regulations and won’t be carrying the kit required to ensure they are travelling legally on the Continent, with more than 40% of drivers who participated in the eBay study unaware that it’s an EU requirement to display a ‘UK’ sticker on your vehicle.*

Almost a third of respondents (29%) were not aware that, when driving in the EU, you are required to carry a warning triangle, to alert other drivers in the event of breakdown. Failure to carry one could leave drivers at risk of a €90 fine***. Although not mandatory, in France it is also recommended that drivers carry a spare bulb kit, as driving with a failed bulb is illegal.

A lack of understanding could also be costing well-intentioned UK drivers, by spending money on unnecessary items. When driving in France, it used to be mandatory to carry an unused disposable breathalyser test in the vehicle. This law was changed in 2020 but 27% of UK motorists surveyed still think this is a legal requirement.

Laura Richards, eBay category lead for vehicle parts and accessories UK, said: “A lack of awareness regarding EU driving requirements could put a financial dent in summer holiday road trips for UK motorists. Driving abroad is stressful enough, with new road layouts, unfamiliar surroundings and different speed limits to contend with. Motorists should do their homework to avoid the added stress of receiving a fine for failing to have the necessary basic kit onboard.”

It’s not just the summer that sees Brits take to EU roads for holidays, with more now choosing to drive abroad for winter breaks during the colder months, too. When driving in Germany, drivers are required to have winter tyres fitted when using snowy or icy roads – but only six-in-10 of those surveyed were aware of this law.

eBay is the one-stop-shop for staying on the right side of the law this summer, when driving abroad. Curated driving abroad kits can be bought from eBay UK here.

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