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European driving bans for freight traffic summer 2022

European driving bans for freight traffic summer 2022

Road transport Ritra Cargo

The Netherlands staggers the start and end of summer holidays over several weeks. However, this is not the case in other European countries, where everyone goes on holiday at the same time. To relieve the large-scale holiday traffic, these countries often introduce additional driving bans for freight traffic throughout July and August. Where and when are the driving bans and what should you take into account when scheduling your European road transport?


Loading and unloading around the weekend

During the summer period, there are quite a number of days on which a travel ban applies to freight traffic. Loading and unloading is therefore not possible on these days. But that also makes it difficult on the days before and after the travel ban. After all, European freight traffic drives long distances and is usually unable to unload already on the day of departure for the final destination.


Is there a travel ban in operation in the weekend in France? Then it is not possible to unload on Monday morning at 06.00 hours in the South of France. But deliveries on Fridays are also a problem – as a rule, trucks do not drive home without a fresh load. And on Friday afternoons there’s not much time left to load new goods. The transport company might decide to let the truck return empty to ensure it arrives home before the travel ban takes force. But the journey may also be postponed to after the weekend. In both cases, a surcharge is often levied.


So we recommend factoring the European freight travel bans into your planning schedule. Take account for instance of the route a truck has to travel through other countries where a travel ban may be in force. This helps to prevent unnecessary costs and delays.


Freight traffic driving bans per country

As a general rule, driving bans for freight traffic are in force on Sundays and public holidays. This driving ban is expanded in several countries during July and August. The list below shows which driving bans are in place for European destinations where Ritra Cargo often loads and unloads for customers.


Belgium does not have any driving bans in place for freight traffic.


Germany freight traffic driving bans

A driving ban for freight traffic is in place for virtually all roads in Germany on Saturdays throughout July and August. The ban is valid between 07:00 and 20:00. There is also a year-round driving ban in Germany on Sundays and public holidays between 00:00 and 22:00. This applies to trucks over 7.5 tonnes and trucks with trailers.


France freight traffic driving bans

France does not allow any freight traffic on its roads every weekend: between Saturday 22:00 and Sunday 22:00. On public holidays, the driving ban is also in place from 22:00 the previous day until 22:00 on the day itself. Thursday 14 July and Monday 15 August are public holidays in France.


In addition to the standard driving ban on Sundays and public holidays, France also enforces a so-called summer driving ban on several Saturdays. These days see extra peak times on the French roads due to holiday traffic. The summer driving ban in 2022 will be in force on Saturday 16, 23, and 30 July, and 6, 13 and 20 August. On these days, freight traffic is not allowed on the roads between 07:00 and 19:00.


Italy freight traffic driving bans

Italy has a driving ban in place on Sundays and public holidays for trucks over 7.5 tonnes. The ban is usually valid between 09:00 and 22:00. However, during the summer months of June, July, August, and September, the driving ban starts earlier: 07:00. Monday 15 August is a public holiday in Italy.


Spain freight traffic driving bans

Spain has a very complex schedule of driving bans, which vary per region, road and/or day. In general, Spain only has a driving ban in place for hazardous goods on Sundays and public holidays between 08:00 and 24:00. On a public holiday, the ban will come into force earlier: on the previous day (excluding Saturday) at 13:00.


Switzerland freight traffic driving bans

There is a driving ban for freight traffic in place in Switzerland on Sundays and public holidays between 00:00 and 24:00. In addition, there is an everyday night driving ban between 22:00 and 05:00. There are no specific driving bans in Switzerland for freight traffic in July and August. Monday 1 August is a public holiday in Switzerland.


Please note: in general, driving bans are in place in Europe for trucks over 7.5 tonnes. However, this weight is lower in Switzerland. For trucks, the maximum gross weight allowed is 3.5 tonnes. Combinations are subject to a maximum mass of 5 tonnes.


Driving ban exceptions

Driving bans are generally only valid for goods transport heavier than 7.5 tonnes. However, there are a few exceptions to this rule. For example, transport of perishable goods is often exempt from driving bans, as are live animals. The exemptions differ for each country. In case of doubt, please contact your Ritra Cargo contact person.


This overview is compiled by us with the utmost care. However, to do so we are dependent on third-party information. This may mean the overview is not completely up to date.

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