TODAY: it could be a good weekend to head to France, the Low Countries or even Switzerland.
NEWS: Deadly flash floods in Bugaria have put many regions under state of emergency. More inconvenience is planned at filling stations across Italy. Identical cars, parked side by side in Germany, had identical keys too, and Kyiv Post rounds up the requirements for driving in Ukraine.
TRAFFIC: yesterday’s Corpus Christi holiday in many parts of Germany meant much quieter roads than usual early on though traffic has built up a bit since then. The really unknown quantity is Paris. Having struggled with chronic traffic all week so far due to the rail strike, it was exceptionally busy this morning. What that means for this evening’s rush hour is the big question. For the weekend’s traffic see below.
GIBRALTAR FRONTIER WATCH: quiet all day then a delay of 1h45 mid-evening.
A GOOD WEEKEND TO NIP ACROSS THE CHANNEL
France, Low Countries and Switzerland quiet. Not so Germany and Austria.
However, long term road works at the top of the Gotthard Pass will see long queues if and when delays build at the Gotthard Tunnel. The works will be suspended at the weekend during July and August but until then TCS does not recommend the Pass as an alternative. Check out the Lukmanier-Oberalp bypass between Biasca and Andermatt instead.
Germany will inevitably be busier because it’s the end of the Pentecost fortnight for the two large states in the south, Baden Wurrttemburg and Bavaria. This means heavy traffic heading north from western Austria and northern Italy on Saturday, mainly the usual suspects A22/A13 Brenner motorway and B179 Fernpass to the A8 at Fussen.
It was also Corpus Christi public holiday on Thursday, celebrated in the west and south. Many will make it a long weekend and return home on Sunday says ADAC.
As well as German tourists clogging the roads on their way home in the west Austria also hosts the F1 Grand Prix though that is in the south east, at Spielberg near Graz, from Friday to Sunday.
With up to 90,000 spectators expected on Saturday and Sunday the surrounding roads – A9, S36, B317 and B38 – will be murderous from early on. Interestingly however, according to OAMTC, two thirds of those attending will arrive from the east.
Long queues were already reported on Thursday, the day before the circuit was due to open to the general public, concentrated around the circuit itself. So far today, Friday, ahead of the first practice sessions, there have been no major delays on major routes.
As ever, much depends on the weather. So far it looks to be heating up again over the next couple of days in the northwest, central and southern areas. With the chronic traffic problems dogging Paris all week set to ease naturally at the weekend – even if the now long-running train strike does not – it could be the ideal opportunity to nip over to France or the Low Countries (or even Switzerland) ahead of the summer rush.
roundup: ITALY FUEL STRIKE. From tomorrow, Saturday 21 June until next week, Saturday 28 June, filling stations across the country may refuse to accept credit/debit/fuel cards – i.e. cash payments only – as part of the on-going fuel strike. GERMANY. A woman rushed to the police station after finding a dachshund inside her locked car. Also there was another woman reporting the loss of her dachshund which she had left inside her car. It turns out the two cars, identical, parked next to each other, had interchangeable keys. The model is not mentioned in any reports. The incident has been put down to ‘an extremely rare coincidence’. UKRAINE. Kyiv Post sums up what you need to know about driving and taking your car into Ukraine, foremost of which seems to be having an International Driving Permit (IDP), just £5.50 from the Post Office, valid for one year.