those who enter germany with a schengen visa have the opportunity to visit all 26 states of the schengen area and to get to know the countries and their cultures.
In general, tourists in the schengen area or in germany have to follow the same rules as the local ones. One aspect that is often a sticking point for foreigners, especially in germany, is driving a car in germany. after all, germany is one of the very few countries in the world where there is no speed limit on highways. If you are visiting from another country and try your hand at driving on germany’s roads, it is easy to get overconfident and quickly push the gas pedal of the rental car down too low.
Speed cameras and police checks don’t stop at tourists either. Foreigners who are caught speeding in germany must generally expect to receive a fine from the authorities. For this, the vehicle owners are identified via the rental car company, to which the fine notice then goes – at least that is the theory. It must be clearly established in each case who exactly committed the offence, otherwise no fine can be imposed.
Many traffic offenses of tourists are not punished
For vehicles with foreign plates, it is often difficult for the authorities in germany to find out the driver of the vehicle, which means that over 2 million speeding offences go unpunished every year. Determining the person who committed the traffic violation is too time-consuming and is usually not in relation to the fine demanded. If you are a tourist on a Schengen visa and are pulled over by the police, you should be able to show your passport with the valid visa. A possible fine is due immediately in this case.
However, since most offenses are recorded by stationary speed cameras, speeders from countries outside the EU in particular have little to fear. By the time their parking tickets reach the authorities, they have usually long since left the country and are then difficult to trace.
However, this does not mean that tourists and foreigners with a Schengen visa in Germany can behave as they wish and disregard the traffic rules. After all, every person who drives a car bears a great responsibility and should not drive too fast, if only out of consideration for other road users. In addition, there are traffic controls from time to time, in which police officers stop speeders and ask them directly to pay. Depending on how much someone has driven too fast, this can quickly become expensive.
What applies to tourists who drive under the influence of alcohol??
Drinking and driving is another issue that tourists entering the country on a Schengen visa should be aware of beforehand. After all, every country has different blood alcohol limits, and as a guest you have to abide by the rules just like everyone else. Otherwise, severe penalties may be imposed – but they are not always enforced for foreigners who do not originate from the Schengen area.
If you are caught behind the wheel with too much alcohol, you will have to pay a fine and hand in your driver’s license. The revocation of the driving license is only valid for germany and as soon as the tourist is back in his home country, he can apply for a new driving license and continue to drive normally. Although this regulation does not apply within the EU and driving bans can also be imposed across countries, anyone who comes to Germany with a Schengen visa is not an EU citizen, which is why this regulation does not apply.
Many countries outside the Schengen area have more relaxed traffic regulations than germany and often issue a new driver’s license despite misconduct abroad. However, the case is different from country to country and depends on the local authorities and laws, about which affected persons must inform themselves in case of emergency.
Germans have to undergo an MPU, foreigners almost never do
Germans who have been arrested for high levels of alcohol behind the wheel or for several driving violations (e.g., driving under the influence of alcohol, driving under the influence of alcohol, driving under the influence of alcohol, etc.).B. If you accumulate points in the traffic offence register in flensburg and then exceed a certain minimum value (the limit is 8 points), you must appear for the MPU (medical-psychological examination). This is not only expensive for the person concerned, but above all very stressful, which is why it should be avoided getting to this point in the first place.
Since germany is a transit country, through which many drivers from neighboring countries also pass, there is repeated criticism that traffic offenders from other countries are usually not prosecuted beyond the borders. Overall, 24% of all road traffic offenses committed and registered in 2015 were committed by foreigners. In theory, the driving license is then taken away from foreigners and an MPU is ordered, but this usually does not happen and the driving license is simply re-applied for in the non-European home country.
Foreigners with a Schengen visa who are not registered in Germany do not have to worry about having to undergo an MPU. But if a tourist, under the influence of alcohol or driving too fast, causes an accident, property damage or – worse still – injures or even kills people, he or she will face a criminal prosecution from which he or she will not escape in the near future.
The traffic rules should therefore be observed, otherwise human lives are quickly in danger. Fines are also still due in the event of traffic controls and the driver’s license can be confiscated, at least for the german area, so that at least as long as the stay in the schengen area lasts, there is no longer a valid driver’s license. Depending on the reason for the visit, this can be very annoying, namely when tourists are dependent on a car. Anyone who still drives despite having their license revoked is liable to prosecution for "driving without a license," which can result in a lengthy trial and should be avoided at all costs.