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What do I need to drive in the Netherlands?

Compulsory items include:

Recommended items:

What documents do you need to carry?

  • A full UK driving licence.(photo card and paper counterpart. If you don’t have a photo license carry your passport or obtain an International Driving Permit)
  • Evidence of motor insurance – third party cover is compulsory, we recommend a Green Card.
  • The vehicle’s registration document or a Vehicle on Hire Certificate – originals not photocopies.

Useful driving information

  • You must be 18 or over to drive in the Netherlands
  • Wearing a seatbelt is compulsory, the same as the UK
  • No motorway tolls are charged
  • Trams have priority where they operate
  • You can’t use radar detection devices for speed cameras.
  • Children up to 18 and less than 1.35m in height must be seated with suitable restraints for their size. If your vehicle has no seatbelts then children under 3 are not permitted to travel. Airbags must be disabled if children under 3 are travelling in the front seat (with appropriate restraints). 
  • Use of horns in built at night are prohibited and only moderate use in the day is permitted. Heavy fines are imposed.
  • Use of dipped headlights during the day is recommended.

Dutch road and motorway speed limits

Police treat speeding very seriously, we advise all drivers to know the speed limits for roads while driving in the Netherlands.

  • Towns: 50 km/h
  • Secondary roads: 80 km/h
  • Motorways: 100 - 130 km/h (90 km/h if towing a trailer)

Local speed variations apply so please be aware of road signs and restrictions.

Drink-drive alcohol limits

  • Normal drivers: 0.5 g/l
  • New and Professional: 0.2 g/l

If you have a blood level exceeding 0.5 g/l you will face penalties of fines, imprisonment and being banned from driving.

Emergency numbers

If you need to contact the emergency services you’ll need to dial or 112.


Whilst we endeavour to keep this information updated, the rules and regulations related to driving in Europe may change without notice and this information may contain technical inaccuracies. We cannot be held responsible for information which may become out of date or liability for incorrect information.

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