What are the rules for using mobile phones when driving in Europe? Find country-by-country rules here before heading on holiday to the Continent

Millions of Brits will be heading to the Continent this summer, but many won’t know the rules governing the use of mobile phones while driving.

With thousands of us driving in France alone, how many realise French authorities recently banned the use of headphones and earphones for drivers taking calls – or simply listening to music?

Find out the rules governing the use of mobile phones while driving in the European country you're travelling to

Find out the rules governing the use of mobile phones while driving in the European country you’re travelling to

The French ban is designed to prevent motorists becoming distracted from their environment due to the use of headphones or earphones. Ignoring this could result in an on-the-spot fine of  €135 (around £113). This includes Bluetooth headsets, meaning all calls must be through a system with an external speaker and microphones.

The use of hand-held smartphones and wearing of headphones is also illegal in Spain when driving and can be punished by a fine of several hundred euros. ‘Hands-free’ sets are allowed, although they must be without earphones. It’s also illegal to use your phone on its internal speaker – in walkie-talkie fashion.

French and Spanish motorists will also receive a 3-point penalty, however this would not apply to UK licences under the the new EU Cross-Border Enforcement Directive that’s just come into force for UK-registered drivers on the Continent.


DRIVING IN FRANCE? MAKE SURE YOU’RE AWARE OF THE NEW CRIT’AIR STICKERS


Using mobile phones while driving in Europe

Here’s the full list of rule covering the use of mobile phones while driving in Europe. Information is taken from the European Commission website. Please remember, it’s your responsibility to check current laws before driving in any country.

Country Allowed to use mobile phone while driving Other info
Austria
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Belgium
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Bulgaria
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Croatia
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Cyprus
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Czech Republic
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Denmark
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Estonia
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Finland
Yes with hands-free
N/A
France
Yes with hands-free
No headphones or earphones
Germany
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Greece
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Hungary
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Ireland
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Italy
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Latvia
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Liechtenstein
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Lithuania
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Luxembourg
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Malta
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Netherlands
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Norway
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Poland
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Portugal
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Romania
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Slovakia
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Slovenia
Yes with hands-free
N/A
Spain
Yes with hands-free
No headphones or earphones
Sweden
Yes without hands-free
N/A
Switzerland
Yes with hands-free
N/A
United Kingdom
Yes with hands-free
N/A

Don’t forget your Crit Air sticker if heading to Paris, Lyon or Grenoble

Brits heading to Paris, Grenoble and Lyon will need to pick up a Crit’Air anti-pollution sticker before crossing the Channel. Watch the video below or click here for information on getting a sticker for Paris and here for how it works in Lyon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *