Driving in Spain – Five things you must carry in your vehicle to avoid a fine

Driving in Spain

Driving in Spain – Five things you must carry in your vehicle to avoid a fine in Spain
Documents, equipment and more.

If you drive in Spain as a resident (or renting a vehicle as a tourist), there are five key items that are absolutely essential to have in your vehicle at all times – if you don’t have these, you could be fined anything up to €500.

High-Visibility (hi-vis) Vest or jacket
If you’re unlucky enough to break down or be involved in an accident on a major road or highway in Spain, then you MUST wear a hi-vis jacket when outside the vehicle. As you’ll need to put it on BEFORE you get out of the vehicle, store it in the passenger compartment so you can reach it easily if needed. Fine for not wearing hi-vis – €200

Essential Documents
There are three documents that you must have with you – driving licence, “permiso de circulacion” for your vehicle and the ITV card or Certificate (if applicable).
For more information about these documents
check out this article. It goes without saying that these must be valid and legal or you could face fines of between €10 – €500.

ITV Sticker in top right corner of windscreen
Take a look at our in depth article all about the ITV Sticker and why you need to display it clearly. Even if your ITV is completely up to date, if you don’t show the sticker (‘pegatina’ in Spanish), you could be on the receiving end of a €100 fine.

Hazard Warning Triangles/V-16 light
You need to carry at least two of these in your vehicle at all times. It’s a good idea to have a bit of a practice at putting them up (rather than trying to work it out in the dark/rain/snow or whatever) and always make sure they are clean and easily accessible.
Place the triangles in front of and behind your vehicle at a distance of
at least 50m, to give a 100m view – so if there’s a bend or obstruction, you’ll need to place the triangles further way. If you’re on a motorway, you’ll only need one behind the vehicle. As well as being a huge safety risk, failure to carry these could cost you a €200 fine.
The warning triangles are being phased out over the next few years, and will be replaced by the V-16 warning light.

Spare Wheel or Puncture Repair Kit
It sounds like stating the obvious, but you must carry either a fully-functioning and legal spare wheel/tyre OR specific puncture repair kit for your vehicle AND the tools to make a repair, at the roadside if necessary. As well as being very embarrassing, if you don’t have these you could be fined €200. 

It used to be mandatory to carry a spare bulb kit and a spare pair of glasses (spectacles) if you wear them but this is no longer the case.

Who enforces the rules and issues the fines?
The Direccion General de Trafico (DGT), is the organisation responsible for control and monitoring of the Spanish road network and the vehicles that travel on it. They work closely with the Guardia Civil Trafico teams across Spain, which is why the term “Tráfico” is used interchangeably to describe both the Ministry and the police service that works with them.

How to get kitted out.
As a tourist – If you are planning to drive a UK registered vehicle in Spain, there are many kits available from various sources that have all the equipment you’ll need. 

As a resident – If you need to top up your equipment, then you can either visit automotive suppliers like Norauto, big retailers like Carrefour or buy online at places like Amazon. Please do make sure that any equipment you buy is certified compliant with the relevant national standards and EU regulations.

Final note
Although not mandatory, the DGT advise that motorists should also carry jump leads, a torch, a charged mobile phone and window cleaning equipment with them – just in case.

The information in this article was current on the date published.
Article last reviewed/updated 10.08.2022

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