Madeira has a new road infrastructure which covers about 2/3 of the Island. Any foreign visitor may right to drive in Madeira if he/she is at least 18 years old and have a full driver license that is valid in a country of his/her residence. A driver license from the European Union country is accepted in Madeira. Driver licenses issued by non-European Union countries should be supplemented with International driving permits.

The main road traffic rules:

  • Traffic drives on the right hand side and overtaking is on the left side of the road.
  • The minimum driving age is 18 years.
  • The permitted blood alcohol level is 0.05%.
  • Seat belts are mandatory for all people in front and rear seats.
  • Children under 12 years are not permitted on the front seats.
  • Children under 12 or less than 1.5 m may be ridden only in special child seats.
  • The speed limit is: in built up areas – 50 km/h (30 mph), on open roads – 90-100km/h (55-62mph), on motorways – 120 km/h (74mph).
  • The maximum speed limit for drivers who has held driver licenses less than 12 months is 90 km/h.
  • The warning triangle and reflective jacket are official requirement.
  • Anybody, who is under the influence of alcohol, is not permitted to sit in the front seat.
  • It is not permitted to use mobile phones without hands-free system while driving.
  • It is required that all vehicles must use dipped headlights in poor visibility or when driving through a tunnel.
  • GPS devices which show the location of fixed speed cameras are not permitted.
  • Parking facing oncoming traffic is not permitted.
  • It is compulsory to have the third party car insurance.
  • At the intersection of two equivalent roads, traffic coming from the right has priority.
  • Vehicles in a traffic circle have priority over vehicles which are going to enter into a raundabout.

Madeira is a Portuguese archipelago and an outermost region of the European Union so most traffic rules in Madeira are similar to the rest European countries.

 Driving Overseas - Short Information