Motoring Advice

Insurance shouldn’t be complicated, even in Spain.

Many people arrive in Spain not knowing anything about the way Insurance works here and how it differs from the UK. Also they don’t realize that the majority of companies will accept their UK no claims bonus which makes a huge difference to the price when insuring your first car here in Spain.

Wendy Codd from EU Insurance Direct has been in Spain for 9 years and has heard the majority of stories up and down the coast from people who are given different or conflicting information. Also the procedure to follow in the event of a claim shouldn’t be complicated, if you know!

If you go to our website www.euinsurancedirect.com there is a page full of FAQ (frequently asked questions) you will find useful information and a downloadable European Accident claim form in English.

From humble beginnings in August of 2005 EU Insurance Direct opened its doors to offer refreshingly uncomplicated advice and policies for Ex-pats. Advice in English and all home and car policies in English with English Customer Services and Claims make the procedure much easier for Ex-Pats to deal with. EU Insurance has always tried to give impartial advice on the types of insurance available and to offer the most competitive quotes available depending upon your own personal circumstances.

What are the key items you need to keep with you in your car?

* Driving License
* Registration Documentation (Ficha Tecnica and Permiso de Circulation if Spanish reg or V5 if UK)
* ITV Paperwork
* Insurance papers, proof of payment and European Accident Form
* Proof that your road tax has been paid
(Note: All of the above Must be originals, so keep a Photocopy at Home!)
* NIE or Tarjeta de Residencia and a photocopy of your passport
* Spare pair of glasses if you wear them
* 2 x Orange triangles which should be kept in the boot of the car
* At least 2 reflective jackets (should be enough for all passengers really) and kept in the inside of the car
* Pen
* Emergency Breakdown numbers in case of an emergency.

(Until recently it was also a requirement to carry a spare tyre and the tools to replace it, however the increasing popularity of run flat tyres had forced the requirement to be withdrawn)

Whilst not obligatory, EU recommends that you have a fire extinguisher and first aid kit in the car and possibly bottles of water.

Pets also have to be in a caged area at the back of the car.

No use of the phone (even hands free) is allowed whilst driving, neither is eating or drinking (even water), all considered an offence as is throwing a cigarette butt out of the car window if you are a smoker.

Flip flops also not allowed as they are considered a hazard when driving.

With a little bit of thought and also some time to familiarise yourself with the procedures can only make driving in Spain much simpler.

And here are just a few basic traffic laws, that you will need to be aware of…

A stop sign in Spain means stop. It is not acceptable to roll over if there is nothing coming. You must bring your car to a complete stop. (150 euro fine and three points)
You must not use a mobile phone while driving. (150 euro fine and three points)
A left turn across an unbroken white line on a national road is illegal. (150 euro fine and three points)
Overtaking on the right on an autopista or dual carriageway is illegal. (150 euro fine and three points)
The drink drive laws are strictly enforced and the level (0.25) is much lower than the UK.
The wearing of seat-belts (front and back) is compulsory.
Children under 12 cannot travel in the front seat unless using a suitably adapted restraint system.
It is compulsory to use the left indicator to tell other road users that you are about to overtake.
It is compulsory to use the right indicator when pulling back in again. Failure to use both indicators when overtaking could result in an ‘on the spot’ fine.

And finally….all driving schools in Spain teach their pupils to ‘touch park’. They will pull into a parking space and keep going until they bump into the car behind. That tells them it’s time to select first gear and move forward. It’s perfectly normal and acceptable, so try not to get annoyed if you think that a local has shunted your new car! (Well this is Spain!!)

For all insurance services and advice in English call EU Insurance Direct on 0034 952830843/0034 676098464 or visit our website on www.euinsurancedirect.com