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Driving Abroad

Henry Boler

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Hi All,


I'm after a bit of advice about driving through Europe.


Namely Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Italy, France and (albeit not in the EU) Switzerland.


At the end of June, my girlfriend and I are making the above trip over three weeks in the GT6 for a laugh!


I know what things I legally have to carry in the car etc.


Are there any rules for Classic cars I should be aware of? What is Europe like on loud cars? Can't find anywhere that mentions that one...




P.S. Oops, I posted this in the wrong chat room! Can it be moved? (Thanks!)

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Hello Henry.


I've driven through Europe a few times over the years; the most recent in the Vitesse during June 2015.


Ensure you have your original driving documents with you (D/L + check code paper copy via  https://www.gov.uk/driving-abroad Ins Cert, MOT and V5 Cert). A set of photocopies in the case the originals get lost is worth taking and I tend to photocopy all my other administration such as ferry tickets and accommodation etc. 


Not going to list spares as I am sure you will plan that accordingly.


Suggest you take a spare key with you for all locks and a very visible anti-theft device; I have one of those claws plus I had some other bits for car security as well.


The Vitesse has a single box large bore exhaust and although throaty certainly did not attact any unwarrented attention. Compared to the mopeds that European youngsters ride our exhaust was a tame comparison !!


Finally do not forget to take: reflective hi-vis jacket per occupant, alco kit x2 tubes, warning trianlge, basic first aid kit and lastly tape your headlights to stop incorrect beam path. I know loads of travellers do not do it, BUT your car will attract attention by all and for the sake of a bit of black gaffer tape on the headlight you will be staying on the correct side of the law. Just one less thing to worry about.


Best wishes.



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As above, nothing too complex. We did the 10CR18months ago, and that took all those countries in except hungary and slovakia (in 5 days!)


Anyway, a good tip is to email all your info (incl. cc details, passport nos etc etc etc) to yourself so it is stored in cyberspace should everything go pete tong...

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Yes, if you could wait a bit, or else treat your trip as a rehearsal, the next 10CR is in September: http://club.triumph.org.uk/cgi-bin/comps/mxcontent.cgi?pid=17


See also the Handy Hints issued by CT for the event, issued from the long experience they have with it: http://club.triumph.org.uk/cgi-bin/comps/mxcontent.cgi?pid=47

Some are general, some unexpected and purely national, eg carry a fire extinguisher in Belgium!


Do you want to discuss route?

Passing through Southern Germany? - visit the Nurburgring and take a lap or two, if only to be able to say you have!

Italy- France- Switzerland; The A10(I)/A8(Fr)/E80 autoroute from Genova to Montecarlo is spectacular, diving into tunnels and out onto bridges all along the coast.  But then in France take a right onto the D2566 to Sospel - another dramatic road that continues as le Grand Route des Alpes that crosses all the highest French Alpine passes, including the highest, the Col d'Iseran ( 2764 m, 9068ft) and takes you all the way to Thonon-les-bains on Lake Geneva..  See http://www.losapos.com/great_alpine_road



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Excellent, thanks all for the replies!


I am going to start making a check list of everything I need to remember to do/take with me I think.


Interesting thing about spares, my car never fails with fixable faults... Always gearboxes and drive shafts etc... I have redundancy in the ignition system as it is hybrid so can be switched between standard ignition and electronic at the flick of a switch if either fail. Before I leave I will take the fuel pump to bits for a check over as that has caused me more problems than anything else, well, my old one did anyway!


John - Waiting is not an option as a lot of the holiday is already booked, that is the accommodation. This holiday is long planned to celebrate my girlfriends return from her long degree in Manchester and she's got a lot of plans already.


One thing we have looked at is the Spa classic weekend in Belgium is going to be the beginning of our holiday.


Regarding race tracks like Nurburgring, we'll be driving right past it. I can't make my mind up as to whether or not I want to take the car on a track, especially with it being at the beginning of the holiday. Also Lancaster insurance explicitly state you're not insured on The Nurburgring, and from what I understand, if anything goes wrong there your bank is gonna break! Spa might be an option as it is fuelled up for classics that weekend so less millionaire maniacs in Nissan GTRs etc. than that of the Nurburgring! Part of me wants to, but it makes me nervous.



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Hello Henry

                   Just check the car well and carry what spares you can, anymore can be sent out next day.


We always use booking dot com for all our digs as if you book carefully they can be cancelled up to 24 hours in advance so if you have to change plans it does not cost more than 1 nights accommodation.


Please try and do a blog/report of the trip to encourage others to do more with their Triumphs!


This what we cobbled together.






But most of all just enjoy it the worst that can happen is you come home on a truck(its not like climbing mountains or going to the poles etc) and the smile factor is GREAT




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I will do lots of digging!


I have a couple of questions, 'GB' Badge, I assume I have to have one, does it have to conform to any standards or can I just pu my old aluminium AA one on?


Noise is still a concern, my car doesn't have silencers, I have driven it like that in england for about 5 years, I've been pulled over for a spot check and not had a problem and she goes through MOTs no problem (the MOT guy did have to phone the DLVA to double check it was okay to). Are any of the above countries aggressive on loud cars? Obviously it is subject to driving and I can make it fairly quiet by being gentle etc. but there is a limit of course without stopping the car!



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You can use old AA identifier - the requirement is to be able to ID the country of origin for that car. The Euro symbol with the country abbreviation contained within is only common as it was agreed via EU parliament to adopt an easily recognisable system of identification.


I think the fact you have flagged the noise issue a couple of times it must be on your mind. If that is the case, why not just get the car exhausted for travelling abroad and then revert once back home again.


Travelling abroad is great fun, but less so if you are forever looking over your shoulder or worried about a certain aspect - is that really worth spoiling your holiday for, I do not think it is.





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