Located in midst of Mediterranean Sea, the largest Spanish island, Mallorca has been a tourist hotspot for people loving sea beaches and wanting to spend a beach vacation. Other than a coastal environment, this island offers a subtle variation of driving rules and regulations as compared to the rules of traffic in the remaining parts of Europe. If you are planning a holiday in Mallorca or any other parts of Spain, you should be familiar with the basic rules of traffic in Spain.
Although it is necessary for drivers in Spain to be of at least 18 years old, the companies for car hire ascertain that you, as a driver should be of a minimum age of 21 years. Not is it illegal to drive without license, but also a demand for at least 1 year of driving license ownership is made by the companies that give cars for hire. However, if you are looking for a sport utility vehicle or a luxurious car, then a demand of a minimum age of 25 years is made by the car hire companies for the main driver and some of the companies even require the drivers of SUV to hold a driving license of at least 2 years before the date of hiring the car.
Now here it should be mentioned that Spanish police observes the traffic offences of a driver through point system. If an experienced driver renews his or her traffic license, then he is credited 12 points to his driving license. While a new driver is given a 8 point to his credit in his driving license for the first three years of his driving. If a driver is found maintaining all the norms of traffic for three years, then the driver is awarded 2 points extra, but his point tally would not increase once he has reached 15 points. A person caught violating the rule is debited 2 points and if his offence is found to be a very serious one, then his or her license may be taken away. On reaching 0 point tally, the license is cancelled for 1 year.
While you are driving make sure that you are neither using a hand assisted mobile phone, nor a headphone to listen music because both the cases are considered illegal and if you are caught violating the rules, you may be charged a hefty fine and penalty points. However, a hands free phone without any earphone extension may be used, but the driver should make sure that the car is parked on a roadside or he is far away from the traffic in the road.
The driver of the car must ensure the fact that all the passengers in the vehicle is using the seat belts. It is illegal for children below the age of 12 years to seat in the front seat of the vehicle unless they are of a least height of 150 centimetres. It is mandatory for the parents to ensure that they arrange children under the age of 3 years a child safety seat. Therefore, you must ensure this while you are booking for a rented vehicle. The car hire companies do offer GPS, but you may be rest assured that it is illegal to use satellite navigation tools while driving.
Worldwide it has been observed that harmful consequences may result if someone drinks and drives. Therefore to counteract this, many countries have set Blood Alcohol Concentration limits for the drivers. Blood alcohol level limit shows the concentration of alcohol in blood or the air that is exhaled by the driver. In Spain the maximum limit of BAC level for the exhaled air of the drivers is 0.25mg per litre and for professional drivers it is 0.15 mg per litre. The BAC level of blood is 0.5g per litre and for professionals it is 0.3g per litre. Anyone driving with higher level of BAC is considered to be indulged in illegal activity and may be penalized in accordance to the court orders. Besides these, if your exhaled breath is found to contain 0.6mg BAC level while driving, you will be arrested for 3-4 weeks followed by your license suspension for 1-4 years. However, if you refuse to submit your blood or breathe on being suspected for drunken driving, you may face a fine of 500 to 600 euros with a license cancellation of 6 months.
So, before driving in Spain, it is advised to be well acquainted with the traffic rules that are a bit different from the rest of the European countries.