Austria has a very well-developed and high-quality road network. However, it is also very strict regarding breaking traffic rules, especially speed limits. Here are some tips on how to visit Austria without being fined.
Speed checks are very common in Austria. Police and automatic speed cameras measure speed on selected road sections and in tunnels. Always obey the speed limit; otherwise, a fine is almost certain.
Highways 130 km/h
Roads 100 km/h
Cities 50 km/h
Beware of an “IG-L” sign shown together with a speed limit sign. If you break the speed limit at this location, you will be fined under the Air Pollution Control Act, and the fine can be several times higher.
On motorways, all vehicles under 3.5 tonnes must have a vignette, which also applies to motorcycles. For a one-off visit, you are likely to use a ten-day vignette. For vehicles over 3.5 tonnes, tolls apply.
You can buy a vignette at petrol stations and post it in the window, or use an electronic vignette. This can be bought in advance at asfinag.at. If you are buying as a consumer, you must buy the stamp 15 days in advance due to the return protection period. If you want an electronic vignette immediately, you must tick the box "Ich bin ein Unternehmer". You waive the right to return the stamp, but you can choose immediate validity.
The legal blood alcohol level in Austria is 0.5 mg/ml. Violations are punishable by car impoundment. Don't drive on the road unless you are sure you are below the limit. Checks at the exit of the Red Bull Ring are very common!
The police in Austria are very serious, uncompromising, and strict. Do not argue about the amount of the fine, and never try to bribe a police officer!
Always pay the fine, even if you receive it late from the automatic speed check system. The next time you visit Austria, you could face a higher penalty and even the confiscation of your car.