Driving in Greece

An introduction to what you must (and must not) do when driving on Greek roads...

Knowing the traffic regulations for the country you are driving in is absolutely vital for personal and public safety. These must be carefully considered, as they very often differ from those you may be used to in your country of origin.

Rules and Regulations

  • Drivers must be at least 18 years old and have a valid driving licence
  • Drive on the right in Greece
  • Seat belts are compulsory in the front and back seats
  • Children aged 10 or under may not sit in the front seat
  • Mobile cellular telephones may not be used while driving unless with a "hands free" system
  • Radar detectors are illegal
  • Give way to vehicles coming from the right (unless instructed not to)
  • At traffic circles, give way to vehicles coming from the right (that is, vehicles entering the circle) unless they have a stop or give way sign
  • The blood alcohol limit is 0.5g/l
  • Diesel vehicles may not drive in Athens, Piraeus or Thessaloniki
  • Double lines on roads indicate that overtaking is not permitted

Other things to take into account when driving in Greece:

  • Fines are high in Greece. Serious offences can lead to prison
  • Flashing of headlights by other vehicles is a warning signal meaning "get out of my way" and does not indicate "you may make your manoeuvre", as it does in some countries

What to carry in the car

  • Driving licence
  • Proof of identity with a photograph on it (It is compulsory in Greece to carry identification at all times)
  • Original vehicle registration document
  • Proof of vehicle insurance
  • Proof of vehicle roadworthiness if the car is over four years old
  • A small fire extinguisher
  • A warning triangle

Note: Petrol stations may be difficult to find outside Athens; many stations close at 20:00.

Tolls

Greece has two toll roads, leading from Athens to Thessaloniki (E75) and Athens to Kalamata (E65).  Payment is made en route at tolling stations.

Official Organisations and Government Bodies

The Hellenic Ministry of Transport and Communication is the overseeing body for transport safety and implementing national transport policies.

The Road Traffic Police Division at the Hellenic Police Force Headquarters is responsible for implementing necessary road safety and preventive measures at a national level.