Drivers: Avoid a costly €500 DGT fine

Spain's little-known traffic violation

Image of cars parked in the street. Credit: barmalini/

Are you aware that a simple parking mistake could cost you dearly?

Many drivers, under pressure to find a parking spot, often overlook the direction in which they park their vehicle, not realising this could lead to significant penalties in Spain.

The Law and Its Implications

In the bustling streets of Spain’s major cities, the search for parking becomes a daily challenge. This has led some to park their vehicles in the opposite direction of the traffic flow, a practice that the General Directorate of Traffic (DGT) has declared illegal.

According to the DGT, this manoeuvre, often determined by the difficulty of finding somewhere to park, is not just a breach of regulations but a hazard to road safety.

‘When on urban roads it [parking] must be on the carriageway or hard shoulder, the vehicle shall be placed as close as possible to its right-hand edge, except on one-way roads, where it may also be placed on the left-hand side,’ states article 90.2 of the General Traffic Regulations.

Understanding the Penalties

The repercussions of such an infraction are severe. Offenders can face fines up to €500, a stern reminder from the authorities of the seriousness of this violation.

The DGT has emphasised that parking in the opposite direction to the traffic flow is not permitted anywhere in Spain, reinforcing the countrywide application of this rule.

Furthermore, a driver caught performing a U-turn to park in the opposite lane not only risks this hefty fine but also the loss of up to six points on their driving licence.

However, if a vehicle is found parked in the wrong direction without evidence of the act being observed by the authorities, the offence is considered minor, incurring a €100 penalty.

The DGT’s stance is clear: parking in the wrong direction is illegal and carries significant financial and point penalties. This regulation underscores the importance of adhering to traffic laws to ensure road safety for all users.

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.


    • Ron

      24 March 2024 • 16:13

      Fines!!! Nobody checks anything here. Everything is to much worked.

    • Linda Ortego

      25 March 2024 • 05:01

      Spain, the land of fines and penalties, the DGT must have a great laugh every day at work thinking up new ideas to ´´ensure crimes are committed´´. How about fixing the disgusting roads and highways, fill in the potholes. Replace sign posts that cannot be read or even understood but that is too difficult, easier to fine people and make more laws against the people. Laws thought up by a few people in a bar no doubt.

    Comments are closed.