17 days until your road trip! Are you dreaming about the wine? Cheese? Chocolate? Trying local delicacies is one of our favourite parts of a road trip, especially in Europe where there's so much variety! But first- let's get you there safely. Here's the essential motorhome kit for a road trip in Europe. It also applies to campervans, caravans, cars, motorbikes… if you're going on a road trip, you need to take this stuff with you.
If you've just joined us, WELCOME! This is the 21 day Road Trip countdown- whether you're exploring by Motorhome, RV, car or caravan, this daily countdown contains a list of all the things you need to check and organise in the 3 weeks before you go. Each day there's a new task for you to focus on, which will break the whole process down into manageable units and ensure you don't forget anything.
If you want to see the full list of tasks, here’s the main page: Road Trip Travel Checklist- Countdown to Departure.
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What is the Essential Motorhome Kit for a Road Trip in Europe?
This is another post which isn't very sexy, but is again essential for your road trip success! Hopefully, if you completed yesterday's task, this should take about 5 minutes. All you need is internet, Amazon and a credit card. Or possibly you're super organised and have all of this already!!
Here's a list of all the standard essential kit you MUST carry on a European Road Trip. All the other stuff we'll address in a future post.
- Hi-vis reflective jackets – one per person (These MUST be accessible without getting out of the car- ie, don't keep them in the boot unless you can reach them from inside!) A Family pack, including children's jackets, can be found on Amazon HERE (Don't wait to buy these on the Ferry- they're about 4 times the price!!)
- Warning triangle (get it on Amazon HERE)
- Headlight beam deflectors (we spoke about those on day 20)
- Breathalyser kit for France (compulsory in France… maybe. There is a lot of debate on what the actual law is in and it changes regularly. Our advice is to buy 2, make sure they are in date and keep them in your vehicle.) see more HERE
- GB car sticker attached to back of car or reg plates.
- First aid kit- compulsory in France, Austria and Germany. Check it out on Amazon (More on this tomorrow if you're not sure what you need.)
- Snowchains- check the rules on the country you are visiting and pay close attention to the DATES when the snow chain/ snow tyres rules come into force. If you're not sure, read HERE
- Motorway tax/ Vignette. These are enforced in several countries across Europe, including Switzerland and Austria. You must have them fitted on your vehicle BEFORE you cross the border. Most other countries have tolls, which normally take card payments, but if you can carry change you'll find the queues for those lanes are generally shorter. Beware of Portugal, where you need to carry a temporary toll device in order to use the motorways.
- Clean Air tax in some French cities, called Crit'Air. Here's what you need to know about those.
If you don't have any of those items, here's a list to them on Amazon. You can also buy them instore from Halfords, but Amazon is a lot cheaper!
The AA provide this great PDF guide to what to carry when driving in Europe. I've included a copy of the main page, but the numbers and other information can be found by visiting their site HERE. As always, remember these laws may change and this information may not be 100% up to date.
IDP refers to International Driving Permit, which you don't usually need in Europe. For further information, check out the AA above or the RAC page dedicated to IDP rules HERE.
Other recommended motorhome kit to carry on a European Road Trip:
- Spare bulbs for all lights in motorhome
- Fire extinguisher
- Water and snacks- just in case you run into traffic or breakdown
- Automatic Toll pass. We LOVE our Sanef tolling pass which allows us to breeze through the tolls in France, Spain & Portugal. It's a little box which sticks to the windscreen and each time we go through a toll it adds itself to our bill, which is emailed to us at the end of the month, and payment is taken automatically if that's what you prefer- we do! We've just applied for a similar system which covers Scandanavia- we'll see if it works as well!
What to do if you are renting a vehicle for your European Road Trip?
It is YOUR responsibility to make sure the vehicle has this equipment. Take a list with you and check it off one by one. The on-the-spot fines apply to you as the driver, not the company. Make sure you have proof that you can take the vehicle across a border into another country if that's what you're planning to do. Your best option is to check with the company what they will provide with the vehicle and what you need to provide.
- Check you have ALL the essential Motorhome kit you need for all the countries you are visiting
- Make sure it is all in good working order and things haven't expired (turns out, breathalysers expire! Who knew?!?!)
- Ensure things like the high-vis jackets are easily accessible without leaving the vehicle
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