Breathalysers to be compulsory in France

  • Breathalysers compulsory in France from July 1
  • Drivers without one will get £9 on-the-spot fine
  • Vote in our poll or e-mail us - should we follow suit?

Any company car driver who wants to drive in France must carry a breathalyser kit after July 1 this year.

From November, drivers caught not carrying the compulsory kits will face on-the-spot fines of €11 (around £9.15).

However, you don’t have to spend huge amounts of money on a fancy electronic kit. You’ll be allowed to carry single-use kits which can be bought for between £1 and £2.

Such devices will be on sale at rail and ferry terminals, and will also find their way into the ‘driving abroad’ kits you can buy which include a high-visibility jacket, a warning triangle, a GB sticker and some headlight reflectors.

The current legal blood-alcohol limit for drivers in France is 50mg per 100ml of blood. The UK is slightly more lenient, allowing 80mg per 100ml of blood.

The Institute of Advanced Motorists welcomes the move to make breathalysers compulsory. IAM director of policy and research Neil Greig said: “The new French rule is a genuine attempt to reduce the number of alcohol related-accidents. France’s lower limit means it’s very easy to be over the limit the morning after as well. As always, the best advice for motorists is not to drink and drive at all.”

There’s already a list of required items for driving in France. You must have a warning triangle, a high visibility jacket, a GB sticker and your headlights must be adjusted to face to the right rather than the left as on UK roads.

Do you believe this measure should be introduced in Britain too? Vote in our poll below and get in touch by sending an E-Mail to