Planning a trip to France with your motorhome, caravan or campervan? Concerned if you need to display speed stickers on your vehicle or not? Here's everything you need to know.
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Motorhome/ Caravan Speed Stickers- what are they?
In France, the law is that vehicles towing a caravan or trailer with a Gross Train Mass (GTM) of over 3.5 tonnes MUST comply with slower speeds.
These speeds are:
– 80 km/h on single carriageways
– 90 km/h on dual carriageways / motorways.
French registered vehicles MUST display black and white stickers showing they are restricted to these speeds on the back of their vehicles.
Who do the speed limits apply to?
These speed limits ONLY apply if you are towing a vehicle while caravanning or motorhoming in France. If you're not, they don't apply to you.
So, to clarify, the speed restriction of 80/90 km/h only applies to:
- vehicles towing a caravan, car or trailer
- with a GTM of over 3.5 tonnes
- in France
If you are over 3.5 tonnes and NOT towing, you are restricted to:
- 110 (motorway)
- 100 (dual carriageway)
- 80 (single carriageway)
You do NOT need any stickers to show these restrictions.
Do UK registered vehicles need to display these stickers?
And that, my friend, is the important question: “Do UK registered vehicles need to display slower speed stickers when travelling in France?”
The Caravan & Motorhome club apparently contacted the Automobile Club de France (ACF) to get clarification on this issue. The official answer they got back was NO- UK registered vehicles do NOT need to display these stickers.
However… apparently it took three different tries and they got three different answers. So the consensus is that if the people who helped create the law are confused, the local police are likely to be too.
So, while the official legal view is no, if you are towing a trailer/ caravan, it might be worth putting the stickers on- just to avoid an argument in French with the Gendarmes.
Having said that, we're been touring Europe in our motorhome with our motorbikes on a trailer for years. We've been stopped by French police twice- once for a broken brake light and once for going a little too fast.
On neither occasion did they comment on the lack of stickers (even when we'd just been stopped for speeding!) So it's up to you what you decide to do.
Where to buy the speed stickers
You can buy the speed stickers for your motorhome trailer or caravan here. Remember, you do NOT need them if you are not towing.
Where do the stickers need to be fitted?
If you do decide to put them on, the stickers must be a minimum of 15cm in diameter. The numbers must be black on a white background.
The sticker with the lowest speed (80km/h) must be applied to the bottom left hand corner on the back of the caravan / trailer, with the 90 sticker placed to the right next to it or above it.
So there we have it- another brilliantly unclear rule by the French. My apologies.
If you are travelling to France, don't forget to grab your FREE France travel checklist here.