Friday, February 12, 2016
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Driving in Portugal


In Portugal Vehicles are driving on the right. Unless otherwise indicated, vehicles coming from the right have priority in squares and at intersections. Vehicles already on the roundabout have right of way at junctions with roundabouts. Drivers in Portugal must be at least 18 years of age and at least 21 to hire a car.

  • Driving with connected headphones to a sound device is illegal.
  • Mobile phones (Telemóveis) may only be used with a hands free system
  • It is compulsory to wear seat belts in the front as well as in the rear
  • Children under 12 or smaller than 150 cm are not allowed to travel in the front seats of cars.
  • The vehicle must be properly insured and taxed

Papers to carry

Driving a car in Portugal, you have to carry the following papers:

  • Personal ID
  • Driving licence
  • Motor insurance certificate
  • Vehicle registration or equivalent

Speed Limits

Speed limits for cars without trailers and motorcycles:

  • 50 km/h in built-up areas
  • 90 km/h on normal roads
  • 100 km/h on roads restricted to motor vehicles
  • 120 km/h on motorways

Alcohol and driving

Do not try drinking and driving in Portugal. The legal blood/alcohol limit for a driver in Portugal is under 0.5g/l (grams of alcohol per litre of blood) for all drivers. Portuguese police can check all required documents and carry out breathalyser tests.

Car rentals

There are car rental services at airports and in the main towns and cities. A deposit paid either by cash or by credit card is usually required when renting a car. The deposit is refunded on return of the vehicle.

To rent a car you must:

  • be at least between 21 old
  • Passport
  • Valid Credit Card
  • Having a valid driving licence for more than one year
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