The law which obliged all drivers in France to carry a breathalyser kit was always a subject to debate in France. Once it emerged that the main lobbyist for the law was also a manufacturer of the portable kits, there was some back-tracking by the French authorities. The initial roadside fine of 11 euros was quietly reduced to zero some years ago. So, the answer to the question; do you need to buy a breathalyser kit to drive in France? is a resounding Non.
You won’t be fined, you won’t get points – contrary to what PR spin you are fed on a ferry while travelling across the Channel. So where does that leave us holidaymakers and business people visiting France by car?
Following reports that indicate France is to scrap its law requiring every driver to carry a breathalyser in the car with them, RAC spokesperson Rod Dennis said:
“While the law governing drivers carrying breathalysers in France might be about to change, drivers heading across the Channel should still remember that the country has a much stricter drink-drive limit than in the UK – and anyone caught over the limit faces some very tough penalties.
“The best advice is to never drink and drive, whether driving in France or elsewhere. For any driver that still chooses to, it still makes a lot of sense to carry a portable breathalyser to check they are well below the relevant legal limit.”
The RAC Shop stocks driving kits that include approved breathalysers