Traveling Internationally & Country Restrictions
There are common rules across EU member states and growing recognition by those countries in Europe who are currently not members of the EEC of a need to harmonise road transport laws.
However, despite this, there are variances in road user charging, vehicle and axle limits as well as restrictions on vehicle movements across EEC and non-EEC countries with individual country rules requiring observance.
The links to the 18 Countries listed in this section will provide an overview of useful information to the most commonly visited Countries by UK Operators. The information provided includes International Transport Operations covering the following:
- Operational Activities - Cabotage, Dangerous Goods, Abnormal Loads, Refrigerated Transport, Movement Restrictions and Road, Tunnel & Bridge Tolls
- Vehicle Requirements - Weights & Dimensions, Documentation, Safety Equipment
- Driver Requirements - Legal Documents, Legal Requirements, Speed Limits and Traffic Offences
- Country Contact Info - Emergency Numbers and UK Embassy
International Transport can be complex, especially if the vehicle has to transit several countries to reach its final destination. Whereas the driving regulations applicable to the driver will either be EU Rules or AETR, that is where the simplicity ends, as there are a plethora of regulatory restrictions placed upon the operator and driver which are country-specific.
For those operators entering the world of International Transport for the first time, it is essential that vehicles are operating with all the required documentation at all times when outside of the UK. This includes vehicle documentation as well as required load and customs documentation.
An operator’s biggest single asset is it's driver workforce and the skills and expertise that they bring to the operation. Experienced International drivers are extremely knowledgeable on customs procedures, documentation and vehicle movement restrictions, with many experienced drivers able to speak one or more languages, either partially or fluently, which can make a significant difference to many situations that may arise.
Without doubt, good preparation and forward planning is a must. Couple this with an in-depth knowledge of the procedures and legislation of the countries the vehicles are to transit including the destination country the vehicle discharges its load in, and International Transport Operations are no different from those wholly based within the UK.
Additional support to other EU & Non-EU country destinations
There are many other European and non-European destinations that are visited by UK Road Haulage Operators. Where these other destinations are concerned, it is imperative that the most up-to-date information is made available from a source that is recognised EU wide. To that end, Transports Friend advocates contacting the International Road Transport Union (IRU) to which many of the destination countries listed below are members.
Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey and Ukraine.
It should be noted that in many EU Countries a Trailer Registration Certificate is a requirement. In all cases, this is a National Requirement, not an EU one. Counties requiring trailer certification proof include: -
Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland and Ukraine.
To register for a trailer certificate visit - https://www.gov.uk/register-trailer-to-take-abroad
Trailers do not need to be registered for use in:
Trailers must be registered if they are to be towed through any country where the rules apply to reach Cyprus, Liechtenstein, Malta or Spain.
The following links provide guidance and further information:
Low Emission zones (EU-wide) - https://urbanaccessregulations.eu/
International Road Transport Union (IRU) - https://www.iru.org/