7 tips for driving in Germany


Driving a car in Germany is a great way to visit smaller towns and natural wonders which aren’t served by public transportation. But many people from other countries are intimidated to drive in Germany because of the Autobahn.

Here are seven tips for driving in Germany that will take the mystery out of driving there, and hopefully make driving on the Autobahn less intimidating.

1) What to know when renting a car: Reserve you car at least 14 days in advance for the best rate and availability. Base rates may not include VAT, location fees, or other surcharges, but they will include mandatory 3rd party liability insurance.

2) Automatic cars don’t come…automatically
Most Europeans drive standard shift cars, most rental cars are stick shift. If you need an automatic, reserve well ahead of time. And, you’ll probably pay more for the rental.

3) Yes, there ARE speed limits on the Autobahn!
There is an advisory limit of 130 kph, which is lowered to 80 kph where there are sharp curves, city driving, or interchanges. Some vehicles, like large trucks and cars towing trailers, have a maximum speed 80 kph all the time.

4) Turning left and right
There is NO turning right on red in Germany! And sometimes, to make a left turn, you have to drive straight through the intersection and make a u-turn shortly after.

5) Know your German road signs
We cover some of the most common signs — no stopping, no parking, no passing, speed limits, right of way, and one-way streets. For a more comprehensive list of road signs, visit

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6) The Blitzers are watching you!
Beware of photo speed traps, with cameras triggered by radar. They’ll take a photo of you and your license plate, and a fine will be issued and sent to your rental car company. Your rental car company will pass the fine on to you, along with a charge for their trouble.

7) Driving on Sundays
Sundays are a GREAT day to drive on the Autobahn, as trucks aren’t allowed on that day.

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