1. Driving a motor vehicle
To drive a motor vehicle in Slovakia, the minimum required documents are a valid driving licence held by the driver and a valid vehicle registration document issued in the country of registration, which the driver must show to the relevant authorities when requested. Vehicles must be fitted with a front and rear number plate (motorcycles require only a rear number plate).
2. Information on basic road traffic rules
For the most part, road traffic rules are set out in Act No 8/2009 on road traffic. Traffic signs and markings are set out in Decree No 30/2020 on Road Signs and Signals (both regulations are available in Slovak).
As in other EU Member States, Slovakia’s road traffic rules (including the meanings of traffic signs and markings) are based on international road traffic agreements.
The speed limit may be reduced or increased by a traffic sign. If the speed limit set by a traffic sign is higher than the general limit, it applies only to vehicles ≤ 3.5 t without a trailer.
Basic information on the general speed limit is provided at border crossing points into Slovakia by this traffic sign:
Alcohol and driving – zero tolerance
Drugs and driving – zero tolerance
When a motorway or a rural dual carriageway with at least two lanes running in the same direction is heavily congested, drivers must manoeuvre their vehicle so that an emergency corridor can be created down the middle between the two lanes or, in sections with more than two lanes, between the left lane and the lane adjacent to it. In order to create an emergency corridor, drivers may drive into areas where their vehicle would otherwise not be allowed, provided that they do so only for the time strictly necessary and without endangering other road users. Only legally-entitled vehicles may use an emergency corridor.
Tram crossing the path of another vehicle
A tram crossing the path of a vehicle travelling in the same direction, whether on its right or left, has right of way provided that it indicates that it is turning.
Daytime running lights
Motor vehicles must have their dipped beam headlights or equivalent lights on when driven. Except in reduced visibility, drivers may use daytime running lights instead of dipped beam headlights.
Mandatory use of safety clothing
Drivers of motor vehicles equipped with mandatory safety clothing are required to wear that safety clothing if they exit their vehicle and remain on the roadway during an emergency, especially if their car has broken down or there has been a road accident.
Use of winter tyres
Tyres marked with the alpine symbol or with ‘M+S’, ‘M.S’ or ‘M&S’ are mandatory on all cars if there is ice, frost or a continuous layer of snow on the surface of the road.
Use of mobile phones while driving
While driving, drivers must not hold or otherwise operate a telephone or other kind of telecommunications, audiovisual or similar device, except by means of a hands-free system, and must not engage in any similar activity unrelated to the driving of their vehicle.
3. Mandatory equipment for cars
- Approved portable warning triangle;
- reflective safety clothing (EN ISO 20471 compliant), such as a vest, overalls, trousers, jacket or raincoat. Reflective safety clothing must be kept within reach of the driver’s seat;
- spare wheel (rim with tyre) of the prescribed type and size, a wrench for the wheel nuts or bolts, and a hand-operated jack. This requirement does not apply to:
vehicles in which all the wheels are fitted with specially designed tyres that enable the vehicle to continue to be driven temporarily after a puncture is detected in any of the tyres;
vehicles equipped with a tyre repair kit so that the vehicle can continue to be driven temporarily after damage to a tyre;
- first aid kit compliant with the regulations of the country where the vehicle is registered.
4. Accidents and claim-related incidents
A road accident is a traffic incident that is directly related to the operation of a vehicle and results in:
- the death or injury of a person;
- damage to the road or to equipment designed to aid road users (signs, traffic lights, etc.);
- the leakage or release of hazardous items;
- material damage to any of the vehicles involved, including the load carried, or to other property that is evidently more than one and a half times the level of ‘larger-scale damage’ set out in the Criminal Code (EUR 3 900).
In a road accident, besides remaining where you are and taking action to save life and property, your main responsibility is to call the police. The emergency number is 112.
Any other traffic incident that causes damage directly connected to the operation of a vehicle is treated as a claim-related incident. If you are involved in a claim-related incident, one of your responsibilities is to fill in and sign a ‘European Accident Statement’ (EAS) (only in Slovak).
5. Authority of police officers
In addition to being empowered to impose fines during roadside checks, police officers also have the authority to confiscate:
- your driving licence;
- a vehicle’s registration certificate;
- a vehicle’s number plates.
6. Penalties for traffic offences
Breaches of road traffic rules are mainly penalised as offences impeding road safety and traffic flow.
Types of penalties:
- driving ban;
- seizure of property.
Fines are imposed either by a police officer during a roadside check or by an administrative authority (the police) in administrative proceedings. The fines that may be imposed for traffic offences during a roadside check are summed up in Annex 1 to the ‘Scale of Police Fines in Ticketing Procedures [.pdf, 685.1 kB]’ (published in PDF format). The scale of fines is intended to serve as a recommendation. When dealing with a traffic offence during a roadside check, police officers proceed primarily in accordance with Act No 372/1990 (only in Slovak) on offences, and they apply Section 22 of that law to decide how big a fine to impose.
When setting a penalty, an administrative authority proceeds in accordance with Section 22 of Act No 372/1990 (only in Slovak).
Besides fines, there are some offences for which the administrative authority may disqualify the offender from driving. For certain offences (involving, for example, alcohol or drugs) there is no choice but to impose a driving ban. In the event of a certain type of traffic offence, the vehicle keeper or owner is held responsible and is subject to a fixed penalty. More information can be found in Act No 8/2009 (Section 139a).
7. Paying a fine from another country by bank transfer
Fines may be paid by bank transfer – Information on how to pay a fine (only in Slovak).
Information and advice can be provided by the nearest police station or by the Transport Police Department of the Praesidium of the Police Force (firstname.lastname@example.org).