When you travel by car through Europe, you’ll find that the traffic rules are more or less the same for all countries. Of course there are some minor differences as the maximum speed on —120 km/h in the Netherlands, 130 km/h in France— but in general the rules are the same. Nobody ever warned for the fact that the Standard European Traffic Rules are not valid in Spain. The confusing part is that the used signs are exactly the same, but the interpretation might surprise visitors from abroad. Therefore I decided to write here about the differences I experienced, starting with the most disturbing rule: the minimum speed.
Each road has a minimum speed, which is normally shown with a sign equally to the one above. In general the minimum speeds are as follows:
- inside towns: 50 km/h;
- open roads: 80 or 100 km/h;
- motorways: 120 km/h.
It is very important to obey the minimum speed. Fortunately, the local drivers are very friendly and will warn you if you are driving slower than the minimum. They will signal with their lights and horns, wave with their arms and even shout at you. In case you miss these signals, they will risk their lives and approach you with their own car up to a distance of 30 centimetres. They assume that once you will notice them you accelerate to keep their lives out of danger.