English post

Be careful of traffic fines in Italy!

When you visit Italy and (you) decide to travel by rent-a-car, it can be a beautiful experience. But be careful of traffic fines.

Are you planning a trip around Italy? Have you decided to rent a car? Great idea! You can see real Italian life, and all the beautiful landscapes this country has to offer in complete freedom. But you have to pay attention to one particular aspect.
Be careful of traffic fines in Italy.
Traffic fines in Italy are a negative aspect of any trips and journeys you may make. Indeed, if you rent a car and get a fine, you have to pay the fine to the police, and reimburse any administrative costs to the rental car company. So you pay twice for your carelessness.
The cost of fines in Italy is about € 70 or € 80 for breaking a ‘no-parking’ ban or driving in a ZTL (limited traffic area ), and a minimum € 200 or € 300 for speeding.

These are the most common types of fines, but there are a few other types of important offences.



Here are some examples:
  • No-parking bans
  • Driving in ZTL – limited traffic area
  • Speeding
  • Driving without a seat belt (including passengers)
  • Over-the-limit drink-driving (blood alcohol content over 0,5mg of blood alcohol is equivalent to less than one glass of wine)
  • Missed tolls

Today we’re going to talk about speeding fines, missed tolls and driving in limited traffic areas because these are the most very common fines tourists get — and tourists only discover these road offenses several months after their trip has ended.



Speeding fines


Italians love speed, but the Italian police don’t. In Italy there are a lot of areas with speed limits. If you are driving through rolling, hilly countryside with one curve after another, you can easily forget the speed limit.

But along these roads there are a lot of speed cameras. They are like little pixies hidden in the trees. No, I’m joking. Usually there is a sign indicating their existence.
On provincial roads, the speed limit can be either 70 kph or 90 kph. On urban roads, the limit is 50 kph.
Italian drivers get a fine — and risk losing points on their driving licence. At the moment, this rule does not apply to foreign drivers.
A speeding fine can arrive by mail, 60 days after the infringement if you drive your own car, and after 60 days if you rented a car.
The cost is between € 41 and € 3287 depending on how fast you were driving.
For paying the fine, there exist various payment options, but bank transfer is the usual way.



Missed tolls


In Italy you need to pay a toll on most highways. It can sometimes happen s that you exit a highway without paying the toll. I’ve never had this experience in my life, but it’s possible. When there is such a problem, the highway companies can send you the ‘missed payment claim’ up to five years later on.
The cost is between € 2 and € 70. There exists various payment options, but bank transfer is the usual way.



Driving in ZTL-limited traffic areas


These are the most common traffic fines in Italy for tourists. Why? Because there are areas in a lot of cities where the transit of cars is limited. If you enter these areas there automatic cameras that will take your picture.
And there is another curious aspect! For each street there is a camera, and you risk getting a fine for every street that you transit. For example, if you enter a limited traffic area and you go around the block, you can get three fines in 15 minutes. One for each street.
Don’t worry. You can protest these three fines to the police and get them to cancel two of the fines.
The limited traffic areas are usually in the city centre in order to limit car exhaust emissions and noise.
Therefore, be careful when you see the traffic sign ZTL.
The fine can arrive by mail up to 60 days after the infringement if you drive your own car, and after 60 days if you rented the car.

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