Driving Tips – Czech Republic
Lovely mountain scenery, great cities, and romantic getaways are what most people associate with the Czech Republic, but if you’re driving, there is much more to think about. So have a look at these top driving tips for when you’re driving on Czech roads:
Czech law requires that you carry with you, when driving, certain documents which you may be obliged to produce at any time:
- A valid Passport
- Driver’s licence (with photo or IDP)
- Registration documents
- Insurance documents
- Car rental agreement (if appropriate)
- To drive in the Czech Republic, you must be at least eighteen (18) years old
- To be allowed to sit in the front seat, you must be at least twelve (12) years and more than 1.5 metres in height
- A child who is under twelve (12) years old must be securely fastened in a rear seat
Driving Rules, Laws and Regulations
- You must drive on the right hand side and overtake on the left
- Trams must be passed on the right hand side
- Dipped headlights must always be on in winter and at any other times when visibility is limited
- Only sidelights must be used when waiting at level crossings
- Horns must only be used to warn of danger. You are prohibited to use them between 8am and 6pm, or at any time in Prague
- At roundabouts, vehicles already on them have right of way
- You must carry an official first aid kit in your vehicle
- It is forbidden to use expressways without having purchased a vehicle sticker at borders, filling stations or post offices. They can be valid for ten (10) days, one (1) month or one (1) year
- You must give-way to pedestrians at crossings.
Speed Limits and Fines
These are the following speed limits that you must adhere to at all times:
- 130km/hour (81mph) on expressways
- 90km/hour (56mph) on open roads/outside of built-up areas
- 50km/hour (31mph) in built-up areas
Also, vehicles with a trailer travelling on open roads are restricted to 80km/hour (50mph).
There are many radars placed on roads in the Czech Republic, which are monitored closely by Police. If you are detected for breaking these speed limits, then fines are often imposed and collected on the spot. You will also have points taken from you, affecting your opportunity to drive again in the Czech Republic.
The Czech Republic operates a zero-tolerance towards alcohol and drugs. If you are found with more than 0mg of alcohol in your blood, you will be issued an immediate fine, and will be liable to go to court and face imprisonment for up to three (3) years. Depending on the situation, you may have your licence seized and be unable to drive.
Obligatory routine testing can be carried out at any time.
Parking in the Czech Republic is only permitted on the right side of the road, but that is not applicable to one-way streets.
You are prohibited to park within 5 metres of - a junction, a public transportation stop, a pedestrian crossing and within 15 metres of a train crossing.
You can be clamped or towed away if you park in restricted places which are clearly marked by yellow lines that strictly prohibit parking.
You will also be towed away if you have parked in a dangerous manner that obstructs anyone or any vehicle. You will have to call 158 to find out where your vehicle has been taken.
Parking in Prague is indicated by green stripes which have a six-hour maximum stay, and orange stripes which have a two-hour maximum stay.
Prague Driving Guide
Rival only to Paris, Prague is the most attractive and romantic city in Europe. The warm streetlamps and illuminated well preserved buildings reflect in the waters of the Vltava River which divides the city. Prague is often referred to as the City of a Hundred Spires as its Old Town consists of seemingly endless Baroque and Art Nouveau buildings and Gothic churches. Be sure not to miss a walk along the Charles Bridge and count the statues of 30 saints that guard the bridge. You might find yourself marveling at the Astronomical Clock. Due to the abundance of old world charm, mystery and beauty, Prague beckons old lovers to walk along its streets, and attracts new lovers to each other.
But the beauty of the country does not stop at Prague, just outside of the city you’ll find 11 UNESCO sites, 6 nature reserves and around 250 castles, many of which are open to the public.
Prague to Kutna Hora:
1 hour 4 to Kutna Hora (83.7 km)
Kutna Hora is an old silver mining town that dates back to the 12th century. The medieval town center is one of the UNESCO sites mentioned earlier and consequently has been immaculately preserved. The many cobbled squares found in the town were originally the entrances to mines.
Don’t miss St Barbora’s Cathedral, which has been described as ‘hovering above the horizon like a gothic spaceship’. The creepy Bone Church is found here, where the bones of the victims of the Great Plague and Hussite War, all 40,000 of them are used to decorate the interior. The certainty of death is overwhelming.
Prague to Kokorínsko Nature Reserve
1 hour 4 to Kokorínsko Nature Reserve (72.5 km)
Head north out of Prague for an hour and you’ll find yourself in a primeval, unspoiled forest surrounded by towering sandstone rocks. Bring your backpack along and some comfortable shoes to make the most of the many trails. No need for a map, the well marked, and colour coded paths will lead you where you want to go. The green and blue trails will lead you to the virgin forest where you will pass a 1920’s swimming pool along the way. Follow the yellow path and you’ll end up in a country pub, lunch will consist of fried cheese and beer.
After all, what’s a trip to a new city without a day trip out of it? You’ve chosen to travel to your destination in order to explore, why not explore all that the Czech Republic has to offer. If you feel that you would like to divide your stay between the romance of Prague and the wonders of the countryside, then head on over to Cheaperthanhotels and you’ll find a list of affordable accommodation in Prague and the surrounds.
As seasoned travellers ourselves, we know firsthand what it’s like to budget for a trip on the amount of money we have saved. But when it comes to rental cars, we feel that it is better to rent a vehicle that is simple and efficient and rather spend more of your budget on seeing the sites. If it comes to choosing between renting a flashy car and packing a lunch of hard boils eggs and beans, or renting a more economical vehicle and spending the cash on sampling some local fare and beer, the decision becomes easier to make.
Your Cheaperthancars Team
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