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Driving overnight to Austria

(6 Posts)
Toospotty Thu 27-Mar-14 23:41:39

We're spending four days over Easter in the Tyrol and decided to cut costs slightly by driving each way. And we decided to do the drive overnight so the kids slept through most of it. The route planners reckon it's about 12 hours including the Eurotunnel. Are we insane? And more important, will we be able to buy fuel somewhere on the French/German border in the middle of the night?! I know lots of French petrol stations used only to take the Carte Bleu. Is this still the case?

Tuo Thu 27-Mar-14 23:48:29

We've done this drive several times, but never overnight, and always with a stop somewhere along the way. Personally, I wouldn't be happy driving right through the night, just because of tiredness, but if you think you'll be able to take turns with your DP to drive and sleep then it might be OK. (We invested very early in in-car DVD screens, which made long journeys bearable!)

On the autoroutes petrol stations should be open, or should have 'pay-at-pump' type arrangements. IME everywhere in France now takes normal UK debit and credit cards without any problem.

You need a Vignette to drive on the motorway in Austria. We've always bought this in a garage at the border, but I don't know if you'll be able to do that in the middle of the night.

Toospotty Fri 28-Mar-14 12:09:17

Thanks, Tuo. Yes, we'll take turns. I've bagged from home to the German border as I'm a night owl!

I'm not sure we'll be on an Austrian motorway as we're only going an hour from Munich, over the border in the Alps. I'll check that out though, thanks.

Tuo Fri 28-Mar-14 13:08:38

The German motorway system was absolutely awful the last time we were there. At our lowest ebb it took us an hour to do 5 miles. However, that was in August and during the day, so hopefully in the middle of the night and in April you'll be OK.

We are normally heading for the Brenner and into Italy, so we normally take the Garmisch-Partenkirchen route, but via Munich should be easier in a way, as you'll be on motorways all the way and therefore there's likely to be a service station open to buy your Vignette if you need it.

There's good info on driving in Austria here.

Toospotty Fri 28-Mar-14 14:01:33

Thanks. Almost all our driving will be done outside Austria l realise but for the sake of €8.50 we can hopefully get a sticker from a German petrol station in the morning if needed.

Looking at the route planner's suggested route we don't go near Munich. We take the A99 towards Salzburg/Innsbruck/Italy, then the E45. I'm guessing the A99, if crossing the border, is a motorway.

Toospotty Fri 28-Mar-14 14:02:46

As in, remains a motorway. My excellent knowledge of Top Gear European driving means I'm guessing A stands for autobahn.

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