Driving Tips, Rules & Regulations in Spain

Spain is pretty safe for the foreign motorist. As long as you keep in mind of the rules and follow them, driving in Spain will be both fun and easy. An EEC recognized driving license is what you’ll need to be able to rent a car in Spain. Car companies also have age limits, normally limiting their clientele to those between the ages 21 and 70 years old.

When renting, be sure that what you’re paying for already covers insurance, and be familiar with the extent of coverage of the insurance. It’s a standard to have roadside assistance covered. Insurance contracts in Spain are usually in English, so there’s no reason for you not to be able to ascertain these details. Aside from you insurance documents, driving license, and other identification documents, there are also a couple of things that you’re required to have within the car at all times: reflective jacket, a spare set of bulbs, and 2 warning triangles.

The alcohol limit is at 0. 5%, so it’s better that you don’t drive when you’ve had even a little to drink. Depending on how drunk you are, you could be liable for fines, community service, and even imprisonment. You will most likely lose your license as well. So if you plan on playing safe: don’t drink and drive.

Most fuel stations are only within a few kilometers distance from each other. Most of these stations have self-service features, while others have some personnel on duty in case you need help. Credit cards are accepted. Be sure to stay safe and lock your car doors while fueling up, as there have been reports of cars being stolen when left unattended by drivers who go to the cashier to pay for their gas.

Observe the following speed limits:

  • For urban roads and those within villages, the normal limit is 30 km/h although some places have a higher (50 km/h) limit. To be safe, just follow what’s on the sign posted in the area.
  • Motorways and toll roads have a speed limit of 120 km/h or 73 mph.
  • Dual carriageways, regardless of a central reservation, have speed limits ranging from 80 to 110 km/h. Again, look for the speed signs.
  • National roads have the widest variation of speed limits, from 50 to 100 mph

While driving in Spain is relatively easy, parking can be a challenge. Most cities and villages are never designed to accommodate the volume of traffic the country has nowadays. For these small villages, it’s better to park somewhere outside the cities and just travel via public transport from there.

There are parking areas that have black bands marked on them. These areas are available to parking to people who have a valid parking card, which can be obtained from the local town hall. You’ll need some proof of residence for this. There are also towns that offer a monthly parking system which you have to pay roughly 15 Euros every month. Enjoy driving in Spain!


You must keep insurance documents, your driving license, and another form of identification with you at all times.
A reflective jacket, a spare set of bulbs, and 2 warning triangles must but kept in your car. Car hire companies will provide these, but check upon collection of your car.
The alcohol limit is at 0. 5%.
Most fuel stations are only within a few kilometers distance from each other.
Its advisable to lock your car doors while fueling up if you are alone.
Parking can be a challenge in cities.