Breakdowns / In an Accident
If your car breaks down, call 1987 for roadside assistance and towing.
If you are involved in an accident, you should contact the police by dialing 113. If anyone is injured and needs an ambulance dial 112. Either way, complete the European accident form. Police routinely conduct breathalyzer tests on all drivers involved in accidents, regardless of whom they suspect is at fault. If major damage has occurred, do not move your vehicle. The police will wish to survey the accident scene as-is. Obtain the name, contact information, and insurance information from the other driver(s) involved in the accident.
U.S. citizens need both a valid U.S. driver’s license and an International Driver’s License to drive in Slovenia. If you have both items, you can drive for up to one year in Slovenia. To obtain an International Driver’s License in the United States, please contact your local office of the American Automobile Association or the American Automobile Touring Alliance (through the National Auto Club). If you already have a driver’s license from another European Union member state, then the International Driver’s License requirement is waived. If your U.S. driver’s license is expiring, check with the state that issued it (e.g. New York, California) to see whether it can be renewed online/via mail. The U.S. Embassy cannot extend your license.
U.S. citizens residing in Slovenia may exchange their valid American license for a Slovene driver’s license after being in the country for six months. The local Administrative Unit (Upravna enota) will require a notarized statement from you explaining what class of vehicle your U.S. license allows you to drive. Contact the U.S. Embassy for this notarial service. In addition, you may need to pass a practical driving exam, a medical exam, and surrender your U.S. license. If everything is deemed in order, they will issue you a Slovene license. They will then mail your U.S. license to the Embassy. If you are registered with the Embassy, we will contact you to return the license to you.
To obtain an International Driver’s License in Slovenia based on a Slovene license, please contact the Automobile Association of Slovenia.
Highway vignettes (which are purchased in the form of windshield stickers) are obligatory for all passenger vehicles using expressways in Slovenia. One of the most common problems faced by U.S. citizens visiting Slovenia is being pulled over on a highway for driving without a vignette. Drivers without a vignette may be fined between EUR 300-800 and must also immediately purchase a vignette. Simply buying a vignette and placing it on the dashboard is not sufficient – the vignette must be permanently affixed to the windshield of the vehicle. Vignettes can be purchased in Slovenia at gas stations, newsstands, post offices, and some toll stations, as well as at some gas stations in neighboring countries. You can buy vignettes valid for one year, one month (half-year for motorcycles), or one week. Current vignette prices can be found on the DARS website. If you are caught driving without a vignette, you can reduce the fine by up to 50% by paying the fine on the spot. If you do not pay at the time, the police may confiscate your passport. Either way, you will still need to purchase a vignette.
Slovene third party liability insurance is mandatory for all vehicles. Travelers driving rented automobiles from Croatia into Slovenia are generally able to purchase Slovenian insurance at the border. The annual fee for this insurance is based upon the power of the vehicle’s engine as measured in kilowatts. There is often a discount available if you can provide a certificate from your previous insurance provider(s) confirming your continuous safe driving record for the previous ten years.
Road Conditions and Road Rules
- Slovenia has a well-developed road network that is safe for travel. Visitors should be aware that some drivers in Slovenia can be quite aggressive, including speeding and tailgating, and many high-speed accidents occur.
- Traffic moves on the right; road signs and traffic rules are consistent with those used throughout Europe.
- The speed limit is 50 kph/30 mph in urban areas, 100-130 kph/62-80 mph on expressways (the avtocesta).
- The use of hand-held cellular telephones while driving is prohibited in Slovenia.
- Motorists are required to have their headlights on during the daytime
- Drivers and passengers must wear seat belts. Motorcycle drivers and passengers must wear homologated helmets.
- The maximum blood-alcohol limit permitted is 0.05. The limit is.00% for drivers with less than two years’ experience, drivers under 21, and truck or bus drivers.
- Intersections: You may not turn right on a red light. Some intersections have both a traffic light and a stop sign; the stop sign only applies when the traffic light is not working.
- Slovene police strictly enforce traffic rules, and penalties can be quite high.
- In urban settings, you should be very careful of bicycle riders. They usually have the right of way and are known not to stop for vehicles.
- See below on mandatory equipment/tires
- Obtain English traffic and road conditions from the Automobile Association of Slovenia, Traffic Information Center for Public Roads, or by calling (01) 530-5300.
Mandatory Equipment / Tires
All vehicles must carry:
- European-standard first aid kit
- spare set of head light bulbs
- reflective warning triangle in case of a break-down
- reflective vest/jacket
- European accident form (to complete in the event of an accident)
Between November 15th and March 15th, the use of winter tires is mandated by law. All-season tires are permitted if they carry the MS mark and have at least 4 mm of tread. Studded tires are prohibited at all times. In addition, local police may require chains in heavy snow. Failure to possess the proper tires/chains may result in a substantial fine and the suspension of the cited vehicle’s use. Insurance may be deemed void if a vehicle which is involved in an accident between November 15 and March 15 is not fitted with winter tires.
We recommend that you also carry a blanket and shovel in your car during winter months.