Before you go, check you have your driving licence handy as photocopies or faxed copies will not be accepted. If you have one of the new photo licences then you must also take the paper licence. You must have an international driving permit when driving abroad. More information on this can be found at http://www.theaa.co.uk/motoringandtravel/idp/index.asp
Before you drive away in your hire car, check maps and other visitor information, as wrestling with a map whilst on the road, especially when driving on the other side of the road, is not recommended! Familiarise yourself with the car controls before you drive away and check how much fuel is in the tank - its easy to forget vital details like fuel levels when you just want to get to where you are going!
UK Road Laws
When driving abroad, always familiarise yourself with any local restrictions, as these could be very different from what you are used to at home. Things to check for are; differing road signs and markings, speed limits, parking zones (especially in cities) and most of all don't drink and drive! This may seem obvious but some countries have a zero tolerance towards blood alcohol levels which means a driver is not allowed to have consumed ANY alcohol before driving. (A car hire supplier reserves the right to refuse to supply a vehicle if they believe that you have consumed alcohol!!) Bear in mind if you drink the night before you plan to drive anywhere you could still fail a blood alcohol test. Please be safe - being arrested for drunk driving will definitely ruin your holiday!
car hire optional Extras
If you will be travelling to snowy areas you may need to hire a set of snow chains and whilst you can pre-book a set on the site for collection at the depot, this can work out to be quite pricey. You may find that it is cheaper to buy a set of heavy duty chains cheaper from a local garage, depending on how long you will be staying.
Driving in a Foreign Country
IDP (International Drivers Permit) - One of these may be required in addition to your national drivers licence when driving abroad. More information on these is available at http://www.theaa.co.uk/motoringandtravel/idp/index.asp