Drive Your Way To The Perfect Holiday

Although I’ve had two European city breaks in the last two months, nothing will ever stop me getting a touch of the green eyed monster when it comes to seeing people’s holidays. I would travel every month if I could but with airports being more than a little chaotic, there’s a lot to be said for driving to a holiday instead or at least hiring a car whilst away to see as much as you can.

We originally had grand plans to do a USA road trip earlier this year until we realised we needed to save like crazy for the extension, plus its been many years since I’ve driven in this country let alone abroad. Ever the researcher though here are some things to think about if you’re considering a driving holiday.


Hopefully a no-brainer because it’s normally a requirement to hire a car that anyone who plans on driving has insurance. That aside, it’s almost guaranteed that if you don’t have insurance something will go wrong. If you plan on borrowing a car and/or splitting the driving up, you may want to look into temporary car insurance to provide coverage for the duration of your trip.

Take a V5C

If you plan on taking your own car on holiday, it is vital that you have your V5C (vehicle logbook) in the car at all times. You may need to show this document at a port or while driving abroad, so pop it in the glove compartmentif you haven’t already for peace of mind. If you don’t have your V5C, you can apply for this but be sure to do this well in advance of your trip (especially as COVID-19 has caused delays).

If you are taking a hired or leased vehicle overseas then you will need a VE103 vehicle on hire certificate. You can get this document from the AA, RAC Motoring Services and Logistics UK.

Import Duty

If you are taking your car outside of the UK, you may also have to pay import duty so you should always check with the authorities of your destination (you can easily find this out with some online research). If you are going to a non-EU country that charges import duty then you could buy a CPD Carnet instead – this can take up to 4 weeks to process.

General Documentation

As a helpful summary, here is a breakdown of the general documentation you are likely to need depending on your destination. Channel your inner organisational diva and pop a little folder together to make sure you’re prepared for any eventuality. The key documents include:

  • Driving license
  • V5C
  • Certificate of Motor Insurance
  • International Driving Permit (if needed)
  • Green Card from your insurer (not required in the EU)
  • Passport
  • Travel insurance documentation
  • Visa (for certain countries)
Extra Tips

You should also spend some time checking the different driving laws and etiquette in the country that you are visiting as these can differ to back home. Additionally, make sure you have maps/a GPS system and your car has had a full checkover – breaking down is bad enough but doing it on holiday does not make for a relaxing time!

All that’s left for me now is to get back behind the wheel and make our road trip become a reality…maybe next year!

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