German foreign vignette €100 – Minsk protest

Last updated 18:00 GMT.

.

CHANNEL DELAYS: Bad weather in the West playing havoc with ferry schedules.

Eurotunnel: passenger 30mins UK, ‘unforeseen capacity restrictions’.

LD Lines Portsmouth-Le Havre cancelled tomorrow and Newhaven Dieppe 10:00 and 23:00 tomorrow and Dieppe Newhaven 18:00 tomorrow and 18:00 24 December

LD Lines Santander-Poole cancelled due to ‘extreme’ weather in Bay of Biscay. Poole-Santander sails to Le Havre at 13:00.

Both Condor Ferries and Brittany Ferries making major changes to services today and tomorrow. Click links for more.

WEATHER ALERTS: Amber alert high winds west France, south Norway, east Germany, fog Montenegro, ice east Czech Republic.

WEATHER: Unsettled and windy across northern Europe, better in the south.

See Travel/Traffic/Weather for more.

.

€100 to drive in Germany from 2015.

Transport minister Alexander Dobrindt

Transport minister Alexander Dobrindt

The roads vignette will cost €100 per year and will be introduced in 2015 according to reports in the German press this morning. Presumably there will be a short stay vignette (though there isn’t in Switzerland). The measure is expected to raise one billion euros! (over four years). We still haven’t seen whether it applies to all roads or just motorways.

note: Public broadcaster Deutsche Welle says the toll will apply just to motorways, but all the stories in the press this morning have been written off the back of a simple Q&A interview new transport minister Alexander Dobrindt gave to Sonntag am Bild, the Sunday edition of the Bild mass market daily, published today. That interview only refers to German roads. The €100 per year figure was suggested by the interviewer; Dobrindt says, ‘One can think about 100 euros. But it can also be somewhat more or less.’

update: a journalist from Deutsche Welle responded to our query over which roads the vignette will apply to. @Marks_hallam says, ‘Autobahns for sure, some “Schnellstrassen” [dual carriageway] perhaps, as I understand it. Criticisms include pushing traffic to smaller streets. I’m happy to be corrected, though… ‘

Traffic migrating to back roads is a well-known side effect of motorway toll schemes. Mark Hallam also makes the point that €100 is more than some drivers of low emission cars currently pay in road tax. It’s worth remembering how the German vignette will work. See this article from Tax News in August (which also refers to the vignette applying to the motorway network).

.

Belarus: extraordinary scenes in Minsk on Friday night as hundreds of drivers took to the streets over a new car tax. The cause however is secondary to the fact it took place at all. Mass protests are rare in Belarus and dealt with harshly. ‘Athletic men in civilian clothes’ - a euphemism for plainclothes security forces – were out in force, filming events, taking registration numbers and bundling away troublemakers according to reports. Drivers honked their horns, stopped in the road with their bonnets up for ‘repairs’, or cruised slowly up and down Independence Avenue in the city centre. The protest lasted for an hour.

Belarus: extraordinary scenes in Minsk on Friday night as hundreds of drivers took to the streets over a new car tax. The cause however is secondary to the fact it took place at all. Mass protests are rare in Belarus and dealt with harshly. ‘Athletic men in civilian clothes’ – a euphemism for plainclothes security forces – were out in force, filming events, taking registration numbers and bundling away troublemakers according to reports. Drivers honked their horns, stopped in the road with their bonnets up for ‘repairs’, or cruised slowly up and down Independence Avenue in the city centre. The protest lasted for an hour.

.

Have Your Say

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s