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The Motorists' Guide

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Road Trips throughout the UK and various European destinations. Driving rules and regulations for the roads you will be driving in the countries you visit and how to get the best from your trip. Please feel free to add your own Road Trip experiences and routes
  1. What's new in this club
  2. Radiohead is now topping my list of road trip tracks
  3. Foreign travel is not looking good at the moment .... hopefully change when France and other countries improve on their vaccination programmes
  4. Fast, detailed and entirely offline maps with turn-by-turn navigation – trusted by over 140 million travelers worldwide. OFFLINE MAPS. Save mobile data; no internet is required. Download App link: https://apps.apple.com/app/id510623322
  5. Alfa4. totally agree, all my trips are a round trip and never going back on the same roads...widens the scope of places to visit
  6. Just enjoy seeing different places on the journey and never return the same roads
  7. For me, it's the journey that is the most important factor of the road trip, along with the various towns and villages you stop at en-route. Have encountered many experiences (good and bad) on past trips and it's certainly a steep learning curve and finding out what to do and not to do on future trips.
  8. Why do you Road Trip? Is is the journey, the destination or just the experience? List your reasons below
  9. TAKE THE STRESS AND RISK OUT OF YOUR EUROPEAN ROAD JOURNEYS ROAD SAFETY and breakdown organisation GEM Motoring Assist has published advice for staying safe and secure on European road journeys this year. The advice takes the form of six top tips covering planning, equipment, safety, legal matters and security issues. Neil Worth, road safety officer at GEM Motoring Assist, said: “The European motorway network is excellent and extensive, but it’s important to ensure that you and your vehicle are safe and legal before you drive off the ferry for a family holiday or business trip. By using our tips as a starting point, you can go a long way to maximising your safety and minimising the risks you face while you’re travelling, as well as the inconvenience and expense of being unprepared if anything does go wrong.” 1. Check your documents before you go Is your driving licence valid? Are the passports for everyone in your party all in date? Do you have appropriate insurance? Are you covered for the country or countries you’re visiting? Do you have breakdown cover as well? Run through all the necessary paperwork in plenty of time, so that you have everything to hand on your journey. 2. Carry the right equipment Different countries have different rules. Most require that you carry high visibility reflective jackets, a first aid kit and a warning triangle. Some countries also insist on replacement bulbs and fuses, a fire extinguisher or spare pairs of spectacles for any drivers who need them. French rules require that you carry a disposable breathalyser, but under the current system, police are unable to enforce payment of the €11 fine. Make a point of checking the specific requirements for each country you plan to visit, so that you won’t risk a fine if you’re stopped. 3. Know the rules Make sure you understand the specific traffic rules and signs. Drink-drive limits across Europe are lower than in the UK, and police officers in most countries can issue and collect on-the-spot fines for traffic offences. If you’re in any doubt about local parking regulations, ask someone before leaving your vehicle. Remember, ignorance is no defence. 4. Budget for motorway tolls The European motorway network is excellent and extensive; you can cover long distances quite easily – but there is a price. For example, the 715-mile motorway journey from Calais to Fréjus on the Mediterranean coast will cost you a fraction under €100. Toll tags such as the French ‘Liber-t’ device can save time at tolls. Register your details online before you travel and you’ll receive your own tag which you place in the windscreen of your car. You can then drive through the toll plazas without needing to find coins or credit card, as you receive an invoice and pay shortly afterwards by direct debit. 5. Fill up off the motorway You can save significantly by leaving the motorway network to buy your fuel (and refreshments). For example, a litre of diesel costs around €1.37 (£1.16) at a French motorway service area, compared with €1.21 at a supermarket. Just be aware that the older automatic payment mechanisms at French fuel stations may still decline British credit cards (though the problem is much less significant than it used to be). It’s also worth noting that bigger supermarkets have toilets and very reasonably priced cafés – and are often no more than a couple of minutes’ drive off the autoroute. 6. Don’t drive for so long that you become dangerously fatigued Don’t ignore the early signs of fatigue when you’re at the wheel. Share the driving if possible, and take regular breaks. Fatigue-related crashes are most likely to happen between 2am and 6am, although there is also an increased risk during the afternoon, when our body clocks experience a natural dip in alertness. Don’t be tempted to press on when you’ve been at the wheel for several hours. Avoid heavy meals, as these can exacerbate the symptoms of fatigue, and certainly don’t drink alcohol during journey breaks. 7. Be vigilant at motorway service areas Don’t fall victim to crime when you’re enjoying a break on a long motorway journey. Huge numbers of people pass through service areas every day, making them hotbeds of criminal activity. Make sure you lock your car when you’re parking, and don’t leave high value items visible. Watch out for possibly bogus ‘officials’ who try to tell you that your tyres are illegal and that you’ll need to purchase a new set on the spot. Don’t let children out of your sight at any time, and in particular make sure you accompany them to the loo. 8. Disable any speed camera alerting systems from your satnav before you arrive in France. There are harsh penalties in France if you are found with any sort of speed camera detection system in your car, regardless of whether or not you are using it. So, make sure you disable the alerting mechanism before you drive anywhere in France. Check online if you are unsure of how to do this. If you have a built-in satnav, then be sure to check with the car manufacturer if you are in doubt as to how you switch off the speed camera alerts.
  10. Travel to the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein will change from 1 January 2021. Things you may need to do before you go include: check your passport get travel insurance that covers your healthcare check you have the right driving documents organise pet travel - contact your vet at least 1 month before you go There are more things to do if you’re travelling for business. For example, going to meetings and conferences, providing services (even with a charity), and touring art or music. Passports: check if you need to renew You may need to renew your British passport earlier if you’re travelling from 1 January 2021. On the day you travel, you’ll need your passport to both: have at least 6 months left be less than 10 years old (even if it has 6 months or more left) If you do not renew your passport, you may not be able to travel to most EU countries and Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. You can check whether your passport is valid for the country you’re visiting. Healthcare: check you’re covered You should always get appropriate travel insurance with healthcare cover before you go abroad. Your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) will be valid up to 31 December 2020. It’s particularly important you get travel insurance with the right cover if you have a pre-existing medical condition. This is because the EHIC scheme covers pre-existing conditions, while many travel insurance policies do not. Entering other countries Border control: you may have to show your return ticket and money At border control, you may need to: show a return or onward ticket show you have enough money for your stay use separate lanes from EU, EEA and Swiss citizens when queueing Visas for short trips: you will not need one if you’re a tourist If you’re a tourist, you will not need a visa for short trips to most EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. You’ll be able to stay for up to 90 days in any 180-day period. Different rules will apply to Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus and Romania. If you visit these countries, visits to other EU countries will not count towards the 90-day total. You may need a visa or permit to stay for longer, to work or study, or for business travel. Travel to Ireland will not change from 1 January 2021. You’ll also be able to work in Ireland in the same way as before. Taking food and drink into EU countries You will not be able to take meat, milk or products containing them into EU countries from 1 January 2021. There are some exceptions, for example certain amounts of powdered infant milk, infant food, or pet food required for medical reasons. Check the rules about taking food and drink into the EU on the European Commission website. Taking plants and plant products into EU countries You’ll need a certificate to take certain plants and plant products into EU countries from 1 January 2021. Check the rules about taking plants and plant products into the EU on the European Commission website. Travel There may be changes from 1 January 2021. What these are depend on how you’re travelling. However you travel, check before you leave for any delays or disruption. Driving You may need extra documents from 1 January 2021. You might need an international driving permit (IDP) to drive in some countries. If you’re taking your own vehicle, you will also need a ‘green card’ and a GB sticker. Compensation if your travel is disrupted Some travel insurance policies only cover certain types of disruption. Check your provider’s terms and conditions to make sure you have the cover you need if your travel is cancelled or delayed. Your consumer rights will not change from 1 January 2021. This means that if your travel is cancelled or delayed you may be able to claim a refund or compensation. Check your booking’s terms and conditions to find out more. Pet travel: allow at least 1 month to arrange From 1 January 2021 you will not be able to use the existing pet passport scheme. Instead, you’ll need an animal health certificate (AHC) for your pet. Allow at least 1 month to arrange this and relevant vaccinations. Follow the guidance about pet travel to Europe from 1 January 2021. Mobile roaming: free roaming may end From 1 January 2021, the guarantee of free mobile phone roaming throughout the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway will end. Check with your phone operator to find out about any roaming charges you might get from 1 January 2021. A new law means that you’re protected from getting mobile data charges above £45 without you knowing. Once you reach £45, you need to opt in to spend more so that you can continue using the internet while you’re abroad. Your phone operator will tell how you can do this. If your travel company goes out of business You’re protected if you buy a package holiday and the company goes out of business. You get this cover even if it’s an EU company, as long as the company targets UK customers. Otherwise, you can claim compensation if you used your credit card. You’ll continue to be able to claim for payments between £100 and £30,000.
  11. Here is a list of things you may need to pack for the car when setting off on a Road Trip (Please Note: some items will have an affiliate link which clicks through to a supplier but you will not be charged anything for this) A motoring kit needs to be packed in the car before venturing abroad. Below is a list of the minimum required kit to take with you in order to comply with all the rules and regulations: The below items are linked for your convenience and for easier searching. First Aid Kit (comprehensive) Spare Bulb Kit (bulbs for all the lights on the car) Breathalysers (necessary in France) GB Sticker on the rear of the vehicle Headlamp Deflectors Warning Triangle (sometimes two, depending on country) Fluorescent Jackets (one per passenger and packed within the car so as accessible) Vehicle Documents (Insurance, MOT, Registration Documents) Driving Licence(s) Other items that you may wish to take with you: Spare Key, it's no good being left at home! Best to give to a passenger. Dash Cam (plenty of false claims occurring on the continent) Sat Nav (no speed camera location software to be used in France) Games and entertainment for the Kids Food and Drink, although the motorway services are of a high standard and are generally quite reasonable costs. Change (coins of the local currency) are needed for the Toilets in motorway services - HINT: some toilet turnstiles issue an entry ticket which can be redeemed at the shop checkout for the full amount paid
  12. Route 66, known as the Mother Road starts in Chicago and travels 300 miles through Illinois. Take it to Joliet and visit the historic Rialto Theater that plays host to world-class entertainment. Stop off at diners who specialize in delicious, homemade food, and visit Starved Rock, voted Illinois' number one attraction, with its huge bluffs, deep canyons and majestic waterfalls.
  13. Which ones have you done from the above Alfa4 ? I have previously done the following (sometimes more than once): 1, 2, 4, 5, 11, 12, 15, 19 However, am looking to do the following in the near future: 6, 8, 10, 13, 16, 17 Chomping at the bit for the restrictions not to be there early next year and finally get out on the road 🙂
  14. I have done a few of these routes...memorable vistas
  15. Led Zeppelin 1 Led Zeppelin 2 Led Zeppelin 3 Led Zeppelin 4 ...need I go on? 🙂
  16. List your ideal Road Trip tunes to play on your journey
  17. Here's a list of European Road Trips to consider for the future 1. Autobahn, Germany The Autobahn is Germany’s famed highway system where there are no speed limits in non-urban regions. It gives drivers the option to really put the pedal to the metal while traveling the beautiful German countryside. 2. Route 500, Germany This beautiful drive cuts through the midst of the Black Forest, and offers drivers incredible views along with a smooth journey through the mountains. This picturesque route from Feldberg to Waldkirch is almost 70 km long and on a clear day offers awe-inspiring views that reach from the Northern Black Forest across the Rhineland Plain to the Vosges mountains in Alsace and on to the Swiss Alps. 3. Ring of Kerry, Ireland The Irish countryside is noted for its rugged beautiful, and Ring of Kerry is the idea European road trip. This 200 km loop takes you through the mountains, to the beaches, lakes, and rivers of the Emerald Isle. When you fly to Ireland, you can arrange to pick up a car rental near the airport and hit the road. Visit charming villages along the way and be sure to take in a view of Skellig Michael island off the coast, which featured prominently in the recent Star Wars movies. 4. Amalfi Coast, Italy South Italy is one of the best vacation destinations for a European road trip. Driving the Amalfi Coast will take any traveler back in time, with the beautiful architecture of Italy on full display. From town to town, taking the tour of the Amalfi Coast leads travelers from one incredible destination to another. It’s the mix of history, architecture, food and scenery that makes this one of the best road trips in Europe. 5. Les Corniches, France A set of three different drives at three different altitudes with three different scenic tours of the region, Les Corniches give drivers options for a European road trip where you can see all that the beautiful French countryside has to offer. Be sure to spend time in Monaco, as all of Les Corniches drives take you to the amazing and distinctive city. 6. La Route des Grandes Alpes, France The route of the High Alps, this drive takes you throughout the mountains of France. Built solely for tourists that wanted to travel a scenic route through the region, La Route des Grandes Alpes takes drivers through 4 national parks and 16 mountain passes. Make sure to enjoy the incredibly beautiful Geneva Lake, a stop on this scenic drive. 7. Trollstigen, Norway This beautiful mountain pass road is known as the Troll Route, and is famous for being one of the most scenic European road trips. From mountains to waterfalls, drivers will be able to experience the beauty of Norway while traveling from Åndalsnes and Valldalen in the heart of the country. 8. Klausen Pass, Switzerland An Alpine road that winds its way through the fabled Swiss mountains, Klausen Pass takes drivers through a long and winding journey of beautiful scenery on one of the best road trips in Europe. Every four to five years the Klausenrunnen takes place, a wild car race that travels Klausen Pass. If you are in the area be sure to take in this incredible event! 9. Estoril Coast Drive, Portugal This beautiful drive takes travelers along the amazing and under-rated coastline of Portugal, from Lisbon inwards to Sintra. On the trip, you have to make a stop at the National Palace in Sintra, as the incredible architecture and history are some of the most amazing in all of Europe. 10. Route Napoleon, France Following the route taken by Napoleon Bonaparte when he traveled from Elba to Grenoble, Route Napoleon runs through the French Alps. Scenic views abound, as this famed road allows drivers to take a step back in time in rural France. Connect with this historic region on your European road trip. 11. Romantic Road, Germany This road that cuts through the heart of Germany offers a look at the countryside in medieval times, with architecture and art dating back hundreds of years. Make sure to visit during the annual Oktoberfest celebration, as there will be much to see and do! Germany’s excellent road network makes it the ideal location for a European road trip. 12. Great Dolomite Road, Italy A drive through northern Italy on the Great Dolomite Road takes travelers into a different side of Italy, far from the trendy cities and tourist traps. Many of the rural villages along the way have incredible food to offer, so be sure to make a stop and enjoy the culinary delights! 13. Furka Pass, Switzerland This winding pass through the Alps is a world-famous European road trip, and drivers can test their nerve and their vehicles as one hairpin curve leads to another, to another, and to another. A challenging drive, but an extremely rewarding one, which is why it’s one of the best road trips in Europe. 14. Atlantic Road, Norway Running a little over 8 km, this amazing architectural marvel of a road may be the most incredible road in all of Europe. Going over water via multiple islands, the Atlantic Road is unique and amazing. 15. Stelvio Pass, Italy Located high in the Eastern Alps, this beautiful and dangerous drive is routinely on the top lists of great driving roads in Europe. Featuring amazing mountain vistas and tight curves that will test any driver’s skill, it may be the best drive for auto enthusiasts in the country, if not in all of Europe. 16. Col de Turini, France Famous as the site of both the Tour de France as well as the Monte Carlo Rally, this road is full of incredible hairpin turns and curvy roadways that will have any driver feeling like a professional. This is another road that is a challenging drive, however the thrill of tackling the famous roads with a strong connection to the history of motorsports makes this a memorable European road trip. 17. Transfagarasan (DN7C), Romania This meandering road travels throughout the Carpathians, and is routinely ranked amongst the world’s best drives. From Transylvania to Wallachia, the road also known as the Transfăgărășan is filled with gorgeous architecture from a time long passed. 18. São Miguel Island, Portugal This island is located in the Azores, an archipelago of volcanic islands found in the North Atlantic Ocean. To get here, you’ll need to take a 2.5-hour plane ride from Lisbon. From there, you’ll need to pick up your car rental at the airport grab a map of the island, and explore to your heart’s content. Some must-sees include the Sete Cidades volcanic crater, the Lagoa do Fogo, and the Furnas hot springs. 19. The Algarves, Portugal Three hours south of Lisbon is the Algarve region, which is home to breathtaking cliffs, blue waters, and mosaic-filled historic centers. Driving is the best way to explore this region. Simply fly into Faro Airport, pick up your car rental, and head west towards Sagres. The entire drive itself is only three hours, but you’ll want to make stops at Albufeira, Portimao and Lagos. 20. Ring Road, Iceland A visit to Iceland is not complete with a drive on the famous Ring Road. Take this road if you want to see all that Iceland has to offer, including a visit to the city of Reykjavik, a drive on the Golden Circle sightseeing route, and a stopover at the picturesque Snæfellsnes Peninsular. Drivers may even be blessed with a view of the aurora borealis on this route.
  18. Google Maps link to open downloadable map routes for your Road Trip link to Google Maps
  19. TrailRunner mini — GPX Viewer.appdownload.zip
  20. Yes definitely cant wait to do the European trip we had planned for this year.
  21. Well we can honestly say that 2020 was not a good year for Road Trips. However, 2021 surely has to be the ultimate year for travelling by car rather than by air to far flung destinations. Will this be the case though with Covid restrictions still being in place and also restricted travel to foreign countries being levied on the British population in the post-Brexit months? We think that Road Trips are the way forward....certainly when it comes to 'stretching our legs' after all the lockdown periods in 2020. Europe still wants Tourists and we still want to go abroad and spend our money. So, what are your thoughts?
  22. Route taking in the historic, derelict Reims-Gueux circuit in the Champagne region of France. Next onto the legendary Spa-Francorchamps circuit which is nestled in the Ardennes, Belgium. Finally onto the world-famous Nurburgring circuit in Germany. Directions from Circuit du Reims-Gueux to Nürburgring.kmz
  23. Hope to do a road trip to Europe in February/March....Covid and Brexit permitting
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  • 3 Road Trips in 2021

    1. 1. Will you be going on a Road Trip in 2021 ?


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