Last update 7.7.2019 | First Published 24.5.2004
Germany is known as the country with ’no limits’ on their Autobahn.
But be aware that a not insignificant part of these roads (around 50%) now have a speed-limit of 130 km/h. And, even if the fines are very low compared to most of Europe, it is still possible to get your license withdrawn.
If you are a foreigner they will usually not withdraw your license: They will instead double the fine. It is possible to pay with a credit card but this comes with a rather hefty fee: I have been told that a fee of 20 Euro is the standard (needs to be confirmed). Speed limits are enforced with a small tolerance. Driving only 3 km/h above the limit is considered a punishable infraction in Germany.
|The important numbers :|
|Limit – km/h
|LICENSE – town. 1-3 months||61||81||101||–||–||–|
|LICENSE – country. 1-3 months||–||–||111||121||141||171|
|1) Around 50% of the motorway stretches have a limit of 130 km/h. The rest is Freie Fahrt – Free speed.|
Member of the European cross-country fine cooperation. Any traffic fine may arrive at your home address.
Fines may automatically be shared between Austria, Chech Republic, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Netherlands, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and United Kingdom.
Up to 100 km/h: 3 km/h, over 100 km/h: 3% (rounded up) for fixed speed cameras, 7% (rounded up) for moving speed cameras.
(data are uncertain)
Did you know that the Nazi-era Road Traffic Act of 28 May 1934 imposed the first nation-wide speed limit: 60 km/h maximum in urban areas, but no limit on rural highways or autobahns? They then lowered them in 1939 to save fuel (40 km/h urban, 80 km/h rural). Then, in December 1952 the West German legislature voted to abolish all speed limits, seeing them as Nazi relics (East Germany did not follow). Later, of course, speed limits got more restricted due to high fatalities. In 1972 a general rural speed limit of 100 km/h went into effect — except on motorways.
If you want still more information on German fines, please visit Bußgeldkatalog (in German).
|Germany in detail :|
|+ 1-10 km/h||15||–|
|(innerorts)||+ 11-15 km/h||25||–|
|+ 16-20 km/h||35||–|
|+ 21-25 km/h||80||1|
|+ 26-30 km/h||100||1|
|LICENSE: 1 month||+ 31-40 km/h||160||2|
|LICENSE: 1 month||+ 41-50 km/h||200||2|
|LICENSE: 2 months||+ 51-60 km/h||280||2|
|LICENSE: 3 months||+ 61-70 km/h||480||2|
|LICENSE: 3 months||+ 71 km/h and more||680||2|
|+ 1-10 km/h||10||–|
|(außerorts)||+ 11-15 km/h||20||–|
|+ 16-20 km/h||30||–|
|+ 21-25 km/h||70||1|
|+ 26-30 km/h||80||1|
|+ 31-40 km/h||120||1|
|LICENSE: 1 month||+ 41-50 km/h||160||2|
|LICENSE: 1 month||+ 51-60 km/h||240||2|
|LICENSE: 2 months||+ 61-70 km/h||440||2|
|LICENSE: 3 months||+ 71 km/h and more||600||2|
Fines and reactions may change without any warnings.
In Germany you start with zero points and lose your license when you have accumulated eight points. You may get your license back after six months and a new test. You then start with 0 points.
In addition to the speeding offences above, there are lot of other offences that comes with points. The system is too complicated to present here. This is the complete list in German.