A valid driving licence issued in an EU country is valid throughout the EU. In some countries, in addition to carrying a valid driving licence, you will need to have your vehicle registration document with you.
Wherever you are travelling in the EU your car insurance policy will automatically provide the minimum cover (third party liability) required by law. This also applies to Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway. If you have comprehensive insurance at home, check that the cover extends to travelling in other countries.
In all EU countries seat belts must now be worn in all vehicles, including tourist coaches and minibuses. Children must also have appropriate child restraints in cars and lorries and, where possible, in other vehicles as well.
Using a mobile phone while driving greatly increases the risk of an accident and it is either explicitly or implicitly forbidden in all EU countries.
There are toll roads in many countries including Austria, the Czech Republic, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and the United Kingdom. Payment of tolls in some countries (Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia and Slovenia) is by 'vignette' or toll label which has to be affixed to the windscreen.
Bus and coach travel
Bus and coach passengers will enjoy new rights wherever they travel within the EU from 1 March 2013. All passengers will have the right to receive adequate information. Passengers travelling 250 km or more will have additional rights such as assistance, reimbursement or rerouting in case of delay and cancellation. Passengers with a disability or reduced mobility will get free assistance at terminals and on board buses or coaches.
Creating a single European market for air transport has meant lower fares and a wider choice of routes and services for passengers.
Air passenger rights
As an air passenger you have certain rights if your flight is delayed, cancelled or if you are denied boarding. These rights apply to all scheduled and chartered flights, both domestic and international, when departing from an EU airport (or from Iceland, Norway and Switzerland). When arriving at an EU airport from a non-EU country, they apply only to flights operated by an airline licensed in the EU (or Iceland, Norway and Switzerland).
Air carriers are liable in the event of accidents or for lost, damaged or mishandled luggage.
In order to ensure a high level of security throughout the EU, common rules and standards have been laid down for such things as passenger security controls, hand luggage and checked luggage, when departing from EU airports.
The EU has over 212 000 km of railways with extensive international passenger services. There are over 6 000 km of high-speed lines in several countries with trains reaching speeds of up to 350 km/h and the network is being extended with new links in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom. Huge financial support is going into trans-European projects such as enhancing the rail links from Rotterdam to Genoa, Lyon to Hungary’s border with the Ukraine, from Stockholm to Palermo, from Dresden to Bucharest and from Warsaw to Tallinn.
There are many key sea routes between EU countries offering regular, high-quality services as an alternative to, or in combination with, road, air or rail. There are also 41 000km of navigable inland waterways in 20 of the 27 EU countries. Enjoy a sea or river cruise or use the water as a practical and pleasant way of getting around.
If you plan to use the metro, familiarise yourself with maps of European city metros.