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Everything you need to know about driving in Portugal

Portuguese roads are well-maintained, and visiting the country in a vehicle proves to be an easy way to see it. However, although the laws on road safety are nearly the same as for other European countries, you must be prudent behind the wheel, because the number of accidents in Portugal is higher than the European average. In order to have a safe visit, you should learn about the main rules to follow on Portuguese roads.

Minimum age and official documents

Your valid national driving licence, third party insurance and car registration document are all you need to drive in Portugal. The minimum legal driving age is 18 years.

Speed limits

Pay close attention to the speed limit, because exceeding it is severely punished by a steep speeding ticket. On motorways, the speed limit is 120 km/h (75 mph) and on dual carriageways it’s 100 km/h (60 mph). In urban or built-up areas, the speed limit is 50 km/h (30 mph).

Blood alcohol content (BAC)

Preventing driving under the influence of alcohol is a priority in Portugal. As in most European countries, the limit on blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is 0.5 g/l (50 mg per 100 ml). Remember that some Portuguese liqueurs have a high alcohol level.

Parking

In the city, it costs to park almost everywhere. To avoid getting fined, you must pay an amount based on how long you will be parking to the nearest parking ticket machine.

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