France Traffic Fines and Penalties

Speed cameras are a common sight in France and they serve to enforce the country’s speed limits. UK drivers visiting France should be aware of the speed limit and other regulations. In this article, we’ll provide all the information you need to know about France Traffic Fines and Penalties, so you can avoid any during your trip.

Speed Limits in France

The speed limits in France vary depending on the type of road you are driving on:

  • In cities, the speed limit is either 30km/h or 50km/h. 
  • Two-lane roads divided by a central structure, the speed limit is 110km/h (100km/h for newly qualified drivers), 
  • One-way roads outside of inhabited zones and cities, the limit is 80km/h. 
  • On two-lane roads which are not divided by a central structure, the limit is 90km/h (80km/h for young, newly qualified drivers). 
  • Finally, on motorways, the limit is 130 km/h or 110km/h for new drivers.
 During rainy weather, all drivers must keep to the limits set for young drivers.

France Traffic Fines and Penalties

Violations are divided into 5 categories, ranging from simple violations to very serious ones. For category 1 to 4, the amount of the fine (amend lump sum) has been determined. Violations of the 5th category (serious traffic offenses) are always submitted to the court.

  1. • Exceeding the limit by up to 20 km/h outside cities: €68 (around £59).
    • Exceeding the limit by more than 50km/h: Up to €1,500 (around £1,312), a judge will determine the exact amount.
    • Speeding by between 20km/h and 50km/h: €135 (around £118) standard fine.
  2. Drive through red light: From €135
  3. Violation of overtaking prohibition: From €135
  4. Cross the crossed line: From €135
  5. Parking violation
    Overrun parking time: from €17
  6. Error parking: from €35
  7. Not giving priority: From €135
  8. Driving without seat belt / child restraint: From €135
  9. Use mobile phone while driving: From €135
  10. Use of ‘earphones’ or headphones (including cyclists): from €135
Driving under the influence
  1. From 0.5 ‰ to 0.8 ‰ or 0.25 to 0.40 mg / l: from € 135 and a driving license of a maximum of 3 years (vehicle can be confiscated).
  2. More than 0.8 ‰ or 0.4 mg / l: maximum of €4,500, deduction of the driving license for 72 hours (possibly extended to 6 months), a driving disqualification of a maximum of 3 years and / or a prison sentence of maximum 2 years.
  3. Driving under the influence of drugs: a maximum of € 4,500 and a driving disqualification of a maximum of 3 years and / or a prison sentence of a maximum of 2 years.

Driving in an environmental zone without a valid sticker – From €68.

Not having and using a safety vest:
-From €135.
-For cyclists: from €22.

Not having and using a warning triangle – From €135.


Speed Cameras in France

Most static speed cameras in France will flash when you pass them, but the police also use mobile speed cameras which won’t flash. Average speed cameras, which check the average speed between two points over several kilometres, will not flash, nor will those in private speed camera cars.

Be Aware

It’s worth noting that speed camera detectors are illegal in France and have been since 2012. If you’re caught with one in your vehicle, you could be fined up to €1,500 (around £1,312) and the authorities may also confiscate the vehicle and device.

Caught by a Speed Camera in France?

Before Brexit, French authorities were able to request the details of UK drivers from the DVLA and enforce fines. However, after Brexit, these rules no longer apply and UK drivers are less likely to be fined.

If you are caught by a speed camera, the standard fine is €135 (+/- £118) if you are between 20km/h and 50km/h over the limit. If you pay the fine within 14 days, it will be reduced to €90 (£78), and if you pay it after 45 days, the amount will be increased to €375 (+/- £328). If the limit is exceeded by more than 50km/h, the fine is a maximum of €1,500 (+/- £1,312).

The French police are authorized to collect fines up to €750 on the spot.

It’s best to pay the fine promptly if you are caught speeding.

Useful apps

The app Coyote is a popular choice for drivers in France. The app provides real-time alerts on speed cameras and other road hazards. It also offers a community-driven system where users can share information about road conditions, speed cameras and more.

Another app is “WAZE” This app alerts drivers of fixed and mobile speed cameras, red-light cameras, speed cameras and more. The app also offers a speedometer to help you keep track of your speed, and it will alert you if you exceed the speed limit.

We wrote more about this app here: The Waze App

In France, if you have radar/speed camera detection equipment in your vehicle, you will face severe consequences, but Waze has found a way to overcome this by giving you an alert that says “you are entering a speed enforcement zone” instead of warning you about the presence of speed cameras or traffic police.

Both WAZE and Coyote are free to download and use, but you can upgrade to a premium version for extra features.


In conclusion, it is important for UK drivers to be aware of the France traffic fines and penalties they may incur if they are caught. It is always best to drive at a safe and appropriate speed, obey all traffic rules, and stay focused on the road ahead.

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