The success of the Euro Tunnel and the frequency of cross Channel ferries means that it is simple to take your own vehicle when you embark on a day trip to France. But if you’re planning on driving in France, it’s important to be well prepared – and that includes having the right sort of breakdown cover. Without European breakdown cover it could be an expensive mistake.
Breakdown cover in France is not a legal requirement, but for minimal cost you are safe in the knowledge that if the worse happens, you'll be covered. UK breakdown companies that offer European cover usually have agreements with French recovery firms, so they will engage these firms to assist you.
French autoroutes (motorways) are privately owned. If you break down on a French autoroute, you might find yourself initially towed away by the official motorway rescue services off the autoroute. Emergency telephones are situated along major roads at regular intervals. Usually your breakdown cover provider will reimburse these fees when you return to the UK. Then the recovery firm sent by your UK breakdown provider will assist you.
European breakdown cover is a competitive market and cover for a day trip is strongly recommended, as the cost of the cover is usually negligible - with day trip cover starting from approximately £10.
If you are unfortunate enough to break down, before ringing your breakdown provider (or, if on an autoroute, using the emergency telephones), make sure that you :
- Turn on your hazard warning lights
- Wear your reflective jacket
- Place your warning triangle some way beind your car (100 metres on autoroutes, 30 metres on other roads is our recommendation).
- Ensure all passengers are outside the car and in a place of safety.