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Many European countries require you to carry an International Driving Permit to drive and to be able to rent a car. This document is a special permit for tourists and, in conjunction with a valid domestic driving licence, allows motorists to drive internationally without sitting further tests.
Outside of the UK, you will drive on the right-hand side of the road. Each country can have slightly different driving rules, so to be safe, ensure you familiarise yourself with the legal driving requirements, road symbols and stick to the legal speed limit, which can vary widely. You can download Auto Europe Driving Guides for free which provide useful information and tips for a smooth driving holiday.
Many of the highways and motorways connecting the big cities in Europe are some of the best in the world for quality and flow, but this comes at a cost, with a lot of European countries operating toll fees on certain roads. Toll booths may be a familiar sight, where payment is made along the road being charged for. The price charged varies between countries and can change depending on the size of your vehicle, the road used, and also the distance travelled. Fees in some European countries are administered by a system of toll stickers displayed on the windscreen. This system operates in countries including Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Switzerland.
Although Europe is the smallest continent in land surface area, it is a historical and cultural melting pot. You don't have to drive very far to find yourself in a different country with profound cultural differences, languages and landmarks. There are 23 official languages of the European Union and many more minor languages spoken throughout the continent, and a local phrasebook will be a handy addition in your luggage.
Europe's ancient roots and turbulent twentieth century is embedded in the continent, from the impressive sites of classical Rome to the poignant artwork on the Berlin Wall ruins, and there are plenty of landmarks in between to feed the appetite of culture-lovers. If you visit in the winter months, the Alps are home to world class ski resorts, although resorts in Eastern Europe are increasingly popular as a quieter, cheaper alternative.