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Tips for Expats Driving in Liege

Driving in a new country can be daunting. These tips offer insight into what to expect when driving in Liege.
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1. Understanding the Driving Culture

Driving in Liege, like most of Belgium, is generally safe and orderly. However, it can be a bit challenging for newcomers due to the high volume of traffic, especially during peak hours. Belgians drive on the right-hand side of the road and overtaking is on the left. It’s important to be aware of the priority to the right rule, where drivers coming from the right have priority unless otherwise indicated.

2. Car Recommendation

Compact cars are recommended for driving in Liege due to the narrow streets and limited parking spaces. Smaller cars are easier to maneuver and park. However, if you plan to travel outside the city frequently, a larger car might be more comfortable.

3. Parking in Liege

Finding parking in Liege can be challenging, especially in the city center. There are several paid parking lots and garages available, but they can be quite expensive. Street parking is also available but it’s often metered and time-limited. It’s advisable to use public transportation or walk when possible.

4. Driving with an International License

Foreigners can drive in Belgium with an international driving permit (IDP) for up to six months. After that, you will need to obtain a Belgian driving license. It’s important to note that not all countries’ driving licenses are accepted in Belgium, so it’s best to check with the local authorities.

5. Obtaining a Belgian Driving License

If you’re planning to stay in Belgium for a long period, you should consider getting a Belgian driving license. The process involves a theoretical exam and a practical driving test. If your current license is from a country that has a reciprocal agreement with Belgium, you may be able to exchange it for a Belgian license without taking the tests.

6. Adhere to Speed Limits

Speed limits in Belgium are strictly enforced. The standard limits are 50km/h in built-up areas, 90km/h outside built-up areas, and 120km/h on motorways. There are numerous speed cameras across the country, and fines for speeding can be hefty.

7. Be Aware of Cyclists

Belgium has a strong cycling culture, and cyclists often share the road with cars. Always check for cyclists before turning, especially on the right, as they have the right of way.

8. Keep Necessary Documents

Always keep your driving license, IDP (if applicable), passport, insurance documents, and vehicle registration documents in the car while driving. You may be asked to produce these if you’re stopped by the police.

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

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