Europe's Country Roads
Free Travel Advice for Independent Travelers
Who Want to Lose the Crowds and Have Unique Travel Experiences
The people you meet, not the sights you see, create unforgettable travel memories.
Driving in Europe
Americans who contemplate traveling to Europe often avoid driving because they fret over the high gas prices. Here is the record from our two-week trip to England.
We rented a Vauxhall Astra, similar to a Honda Civic, and traveled 1529 miles over two weeks.
We got 39.5 mpg, but we were driving narrow back roads, and at times I rarely got out of third gear. On one segment, that included a mountain pass, the average speed for a 40-mile trip was 16 mph. On the freeway at 75 mph, we were getting 45 to 50 mpg.
Our gas price averaged $6.92 per gallon. Another way to look at this is the price per mile, which was 17.5 cents per mile. That does not compare to high mileage cars in the US, but gas for my Toyota Tundra with a big V-8 engine costs me 18.6 cents per mile to drive. (assuming $2.80/gallon and 15 miles per gallon)
Our style of travel requires renting a car. The sights we see and the places we stay require an auto, and we make up for the cost of driving by finding inexpensive accommodations and cooking our meals. On this trip to England, we stayed ten nights in full apartments with private bath and a full kitchen for an average price of $75.20 per night. That is difficult to match in most places in the US.