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    Car hire France at the lowest prices

    France is one of the top holiday destinations for tourists from around the world. Everyone wants to see Paris, the fashion capital. France is associated with ultimate elegance, arts and the best wine. Thousands flock to see the country's landmark, the Eiffel Tower. France lures visitors with its charm, culture, abundance of historic sites, romantic cities, lavender fields and splendid wineries.

    Whether you are visiting France on holidays or for a business trip, Auto Europe will help you find the perfect car for your travel needs. With pick-up locations in over 400 cities and towns, we have the possibility to accommodate various rental requests and offer low rates for your car hire in France. We have developed a strong business connection with both international and local suppliers. Therefore, our offer comprises a large selection of vehicles in numerous locations across the whole country and the best car rental rates.

    Road Rules, Driving Information and Petrol Stations

    Driving in a foreign country may be stressful and feel chaotic at times if you are not used to the local driving rules. See below for some general information to help you feel confident when driving your car rental in France.

    • In France, cars drive on the right-hand side of the road. All rental vehicles are, therefore, a bit different from UK ones. The steering wheel is on the left side of the car and some practice is needed to master the use of the gearbox with the right hand.
    • Drink-driving is forbidden and high fines apply. The blood alcohol content (BAC) limit is 0,5% for regular driving licence holders. The limit is 0,2% for beginners who have held their licence for less than two years.
    • Do not use a mobile phone while driving; only special hands-free kits are allowed.
    • Driver and passengers must have their seat belts fastened at all the times while the car is operating.
    • There are many petrol stations open 24 hours in major cities. Cash, credit and debit cards are generally accepted. However, it's advisable to have some cash available for purchasing fuel in small towns or in the country side.
    • Vehicles must be equipped with on-board breathalysers that need to be presented upon police control.
    • Special environmental zones have been introduced in the city centres and rural areas which can only be entered by cars with specific environmental stickers. All rental cars are equipped with the environmental sticker. Please pay attention to traffic signs advising of the traffic-restricted zones. It is advisable to download a so-called green zone mobile application to be able to easily assess what zone you are in.

    For more road rules and speed limits please visit our driving information section.

    Must Do

    We would like to help you plan the perfect French adventure. We have hand-picked some of the most alluring places and things to see and do in France. Take a look at the below list and feel inspired!

    • The Eiffel Tower : Getting to see Paris from the top of the Eiffel Tower is priceless. In 1889 when the tower construction was finished, it was the tallest man-made structure in the world. It's now hard to believe that the Eiffel Tower was supposed to be deconstructed 20 years after its completion. Today, it has become the most visited monument in the world and a landmark of Paris. Do not miss the opportunity to see the vast beauty of the French capital city from the top of the Eiffel Tower.

    • Montmartre: Pay a visit to the historic district located on a large hill in northern Paris. At the turn of the twentieth century during the Belle Époque, Montmartre was home to world-class artists and their studios. Today, the district is too expensive for artists to live in and is constantly occupied by tourists. However, do not feel discouraged; get yourself lost in the picturesque maze of historic corners, streets and squares and admire Paris at its best.

    • Arena of Nîmes: One of the best preserved Roman amphitheaters, Arena of Nîmes is sited in Nîmes, an hour's drive north east of Montpellier in the south of France. Built in around AD 70, the arena is still being used today for public events and infamous bullfights. The arena has a heating system, moving cover and the capacity of accommodating 24,000 spectators.

    • The Camargue: The Camargue is probably the most exotic place you can drive to with your car hire in France. The Camargue is a natural region by the Mediterranean Sea located in the Rhône River delta. the region is 360 sq miles and is famous for flamingos and the semi-wild Camargue horses. It is protected by a natural park and boasts fantastic landscapes of brine lagoons, marshes and romantic shore lines.

    Road Trips

    Take a look at below travel ideas for inspiration to plan the perfect French adventure. Get a glimpse of interesting travel itineraries and hit the road!

    • Corsica: Take a drive through the picturesque island of Corsica, south of France in the Mediterranean Sea. Two thirds of the island are covered by mountains which are home to several exciting hiking trails. The coast line of Corsica, with beautiful port towns and historic sites, is a true tourist magnet. Ajaccio, the capital of the region and the birth place of Napoleon is the largest city on the island and its economic and cultural hub.

    • Côte d'Azur: Also known as the French Riviera, Côte d'Azur, is the most popular tourist region in the south of France which lures around one million visitors annually. Next to numerous seaside resorts, the French Riviera is also popular for vibrant nightlife, casinos, night clubs, and fancy restaurants. The Riviera spreads from Cassis, a city located east from Marseille, to the Italian border, along the Mediterranean coast. The region is brimming with lively port cities and marinas packed with luxurious yachts. St Tropez, the playground of the rich and famous, is one of the most notable cities on the Riviera and a highlight tourist destination. Please take a look at the French Riviera road trip page for the full itinerary.

    • The Loire Valley: The Loire Valley is a historic region in central France with over 300 renaissance castles and palaces dotted along the river. The central part of the valley has been listed as a UNESCO world heritage site. The region is also popular for wineries and traditional cuisine. View our Loire Valley road trip plan and drive through the historic region of France and savour your stay by sampling some splendid wine and fine meals.

    Age Requirements

    Age restrictions apply for young drivers looking to rent a car in France. Drivers must be at least 18 years old (the minimum age may differ by rental company). Some suppliers apply additional "young driver fees" for drivers up to 24 years old - the information is available on our booking engine as well as on the rental voucher. Please also remember that the main driver must produce a credit card in his name for the security deposit bond at the time of the vehicle pick-up.

    Tolls

    Motorways in France, called 'autoroutes', are toll-roads. When you enter the motorway, you collect a ticket and based on your distance, you pay at the exit gate. For example, a drive from Paris to Bordeaux costs approximately 55 euros. Allowed payment methods include cash, Mastercard or Visa. Drivers may also pay by an electronic transponder called télépéage. Cash-payment toll booths are marked with green arrows. Credit card logos indicate toll gates where you can only pay by credit cards. You can conveniently check the tolls in France online.

    A Bit of History

    France has a rich history, being a country which has had profound impact on the European culture through the works of great artists. Today, we cannot imagine the world without the paintings of Claude Monet and Pierre-Auguste Renoir, or influential writers like Marcel Proust, Victor Hugo, and genius composers like Claude Debussy, Maurice Ravel or Georges Bizet. As a colonial empire, France changed the geopolitical world order; it had lands in both the Americas, Africa, Asia, Oceania and Antarctica. As a result there are now 29 countries where French is the official language. France witnessed revolutions and was at war with the British Empire. It was part of the allied powers during the Second World War and is now the largest country in the European Union.

    Currency

    France is a part of the eurozone, having introduced the euro on the 1st January 1999. This new currency gradually began to replace the French franc and is, nowadays, the only official currency used in France. Throughout the country, there are cash machines where UK citizens can withdraw banknotes using debit cards. It is advisable to contact your bank and enquire which ATM machines are best to use abroad, as additional withdrawal fees may apply.

    Time Difference

    Continental France and Corsica lie within the Central European Time Zone and are one hour ahead of Great Britain. Daylight Saving Time begins on the last Sunday of March and lasts till the last Sunday of October, when the clocks go back one hour.

    Language

    The French are known for their attitude towards their language. If you are planning to stay in France for a couple of days, perhaps the best tip we could give you is to learn some basic French vocabulary.

    Hello - Salut
    Good morning - Bonjour
    Good afternoon - Bon après-midi
    Good evening - Bonsoir
    Where is the closest police station? - Où se trouve le poste de police le plus proche?
    Where is the closest hospital? - Où se trouve l'hôpital le plus proche?
    Where is the closest ATM machine? - Où se trouve le guichet automatique le plus proche?
    Can I pay by credit card? - Puis-je payer par carte de crédit?
    Can I pay by debit card? - Puis-je payer par carte de débit immédiat?
    How much does this cost? - Combien ça coûte?
    Thank you - Merci
    Keep the change - Gardez la monnaie

    Electricity

    Sockets in France are designed to transmit electricity between 220 and 240 volts; however, they differ in shape from the sockets in the UK. Therefore, if you want to use some of your home electrical appliances (mobile phone or laptop charger) in France, you need an adapter. Make sure to bring the correct one that fits into three electric socket types common in France: "Type C" Europlug, "Type E", and "Type F" Schuko.

    Visa & Embassy Information

    British Citizens do not need a visa to enter France; however, a valid passport is required. Driving licenses are not accepted as a form of ID; you must have a valid passport when travelling to France.

    British consular help may be obtained from the following embassies and consulates:

    British Embassy
    35, rue du Faubourg St Honoré
    75383 Paris Cedex 08
    Telephone: +33 (0) 1 44 51 31 00
    Fax: +33 (0) 1 44 51 31 09

    British Consulate-General
    16 rue d'Anjou
    75008 Paris
    France
    Telephone: +33 (0) 1 44 51 31 00
    Fax: +33 (0) 1 44 51 31 27
    Postal address: British Embassy
    BP111-08, 75383 Paris Cedex 08, France

    British Consulate Bordeaux
    353, Boulevard du President Wilson
    33073 Bordeaux
    France
    Telephone: +33 (0)5 57 22 21 10
    Fax: +33 (0)5 56 08 33 12

    British Consulate Marseille
    24, Avenue du Prado
    13006 Marseille
    France
    Telephone: +33 (0) 4 91 15 72 10
    Fax: +33 (0) 4 91 37 47 06

    British Trade and Investment Lyon
    Le Lugdunum
    5, place Jules Ferry
    69006 Lyon
    France
    Telephone: +33 (0) 4 72 62 99 55

    Campervan Hire in France

    With Auto Europe, you can now also book a campervan in France! Travelling in a home on wheels will allow you to freely set your holiday itinerary and explore France fully. Thanks to our business partnership with leading suppliers, we offer the possibility of picking up a motorhome at numerous locations, including Paris, Marseille, Lyon, and Ajaccio on Corsica.

    Useful Links

    Tourism Information

    Infographic Luxury on the Motorway

    Infographic Winter Tyres Regulation

    Infographic Euro 2016

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