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Ing. Ladislav Luka, Fuel expert

Rules for Truck Drivers in Hungary

Hungary is a country in central Europe. Its transportation laws are very critical in ensuring that freight movements across the continent are safe and efficient. Truck drivers should be well aware of local traffic legislation. It is crucial to understand the subtleties of driving in Hungary rules, especially for truck drivers, when handling local laws.

Rules for Truck Drivers in Hungary

This entails an in-depth understanding of truck driving rules in Hungary, which are necessary for the legal and safe operation of commercial vehicles. Hungary has certain requirements for safety and legal compliance for truck drivers. All such qualifications are legal requirements. They are equally necessary to ensure that high standards of road safety and professionalism in the transport sector continue to be maintained. This entails an in-depth understanding of truck driving regulations in Hungary, which are necessary for the legal and safe operation of commercial vehicles.

This article aims to offer a comprehensive analysis of the special conditions and rules regarding driving trucks in Hungary.

Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) 

This is a requirement that applies to any country within the European Union, including Hungary. The CPC confirms that the driver underwent proper professional schooling and is familiar with several issues regarding commercial driving, such as safety regulations for drivers imposed by a governmental institution or an employer company, vehicle maintenance procedures, and efficient fuel-saving driving practices aimed at minimizing environmental impact.

Driving License Categories in Hungary

This article aims to offer a comprehensive analysis of the special conditions and rules regarding driving trucks in Hungary.

Category C1

  • The C1 weight category is between 3,500-7,500 kg for the commercial vehicles.
  • Drivers should be at least 18 years old.
  • The license should be renewed every five years, and candidates must pass a theory and practical exam.
  • It also requires a medical and ophthalmological certificate.

Category C1E

  • C1E license allows driving bigger trucks and towing trailers above 750 kg.
  • 21 is the minimum age for this category.
  • Holders of this license will automatically qualify for BE and D1E licenses.

Category C

  • Intended for larger commercial vehicles.
  • Drivers can drive on C1 category vehicles, but the 7500 kg maximum weight is not applicable.
  • 21 years old is the minimum age.

Category CE

  • This is the highest category of truck driving licenses and is suited for moving considerable volumes of merchandise.
  • 21 years is the youngest age for holding a CE license.
  • People holding this license also get BE, C1E, T and D 1 E licenses.

Other Qualifications for Truck Driving in Hungary

  • Medical Examination: Hungarian truck drivers undergo medical screening. This ensures they are physically fit to handle those large vehicles. These include vision tests, physical health check-ups and mental fitness.
  • Age Requirements: Age limits for different license categories differ. For instance, Category C1 requires the driver to be above 18 years of age. A 21-year-old driver is required in categories C, CE and C1E.
  • Theory and Practical Tests: For obtaining a professional driving license, drivers are required to pass both theoretical and practical testing. These tests measure the driver’s understanding of traffic rules, safe driving techniques and vehicle operation.
  • Periodic Training: Drivers must undergo training every five years in order to maintain the CPC. This training makes sure that drivers are acquainted with the current regulations, safety standards and driving techniques.
  • Additional Certifications for Specialized Cargo: In addition, you may need more certificates for transporting hazardous materials or oversized loads. For instance, the ADR certificate is required for dangerous goods.

Altogether, all these qualifications signify that Hungarian truck drivers are adequately trained and prepared for the demands of professional driving. This, in turn, helps the country have safer roads and smooth transport operations.

Drunk-Driving Regulations

In Hungary, the legal blood alcohol limit for driving is 0.00%. Drivers, especially truck drivers, are not permitted to have any detected amount of alcohol in their blood while they operate a vehicle. This zero-tolerance policy is implemented strictly to ensure road safety.

If a driver is over this limit, the consequences are dire. They include heavy fines, the possibility of incarceration and even the temporary loss or permanent removal of the driving license in question. Further, alcohol-impaired driving is a serious criminal offence with severe legal ramifications for professional truckers, including losing their job and tarnishing their career in this field. Hungary strictly enforces these rules. It reflects their dedication to high road safety standards.

Mandatory Equipment for Truck Drivers

Truck drivers in Hungary are legally required to carry specific items in their vehicles, including:

  • Reflective jackets for all occupants.
  • A warning triangle.
  • A spare bulb kit.
  • A breathalyser test kit.
  • A first aid kit.
  • Snow chains, as indicated by road signs.
  • Fire Extinguisher: It is a local legal requirement to carry a fire extinguisher on vehicles over 3.5t, and those exceeding 24t need two extinguishers.

Driving Age Restrictions

  • In Hungary, the minimum age for driving light-duty vehicles is 18 years.
  • A minimum driving age of 21 is set for heavy-duty commercial trucks.

Toll Roads in Hungary

Toll rates for trucks in Hungary are calculated according to the overall gross weight of a vehicle. Vehicles whose total weight is more than 3.5 tons will have to use a toll unit based on the HU-GO electronic tolling system. This system encompasses the entire Hungarian toll road network. The Toll fees depend on the distance covered, the vehicle’s weight and its environmental category.

Eurowag provides drivers, in particular truckers and transport companies, with an EETS-certified toll box. It reduces issues with the payment of tolls and ensures that one complies with any regulation on the matter throughout Europe. This is a unified solution that makes the process of paying tolls easier. It enables the use of a single device for tolls in multiple countries, including Hungary.

The Eurowag EETS-certified toll box enables drivers to travel through the toll stations without any hassle. They needn’t have several devices, and they will not be concerned about distinct payment systems in each country. This not only helps to save time but also lessens the administrative load on drivers and companies. It presents a simplified and effective solution to make payments for tolls. This facilitates transport around European borders, including Hungary, since it reduces border costs and makes running across the continent relatively easy.

Driving Restrictions in Hungary

Commercial trucks, like in other European countries, have certain driving restrictions in Hungary. These driving bans are designed to reduce traffic and improve road safety during peak travel periods and public holidays. It is important to understand these restrictions for effective route planning and compliance.

  • Public Holidays

Trucks with a Maximum Permissible Weight (MPW) over 7.5t are restricted on public holidays. The ban generally starts at midnight and ends around 10 pm on the holiday.

  • Eve of Public Holidays

On the eve of major public holidays, a driving ban is in place from 3 pm to 10 pm for trucks over 7.5t.

  • Weekend Restrictions

Trucks over 7.5t have additional restrictions in the summer months, 15 June – 31 August.

During Saturdays, the embargo runs from 8 am to 4 pm, and on Sundays, as well as public holidays, it is in place from midnight to 10 P.M.

  • Local Restrictions

Extra local rules may apply to some parts of Hungary, especially where major cities or popular tourist attractions are located. Drivers should pay particular attention to regional by-laws.

  • List of Public Holidays in Hungary:

Important Considerations:

These bans are strictly enforced, and violations can lead to significant fines. In international haulage, it is also necessary for drivers to be familiar with restrictions in other countries along their route.

There may be some cases, such as perishable goods or live animals, when exceptions apply, and permits are issued. Hungary has various truck driving bans and restrictions, and understanding these is crucial to smooth transportation operations. It also prevents penalties and enhances road safety as a whole. 

Rest Times for Truck Drivers in Hungary

In Hungary, the regulations for rest periods and driving times for truck drivers are designed to ensure safety and prevent driver fatigue. These truck driver rest rules correspond to the directives of the European Union and are important for preserving road safety. These regulations also incorporate truck driver hours rules, which define the driving and work hour limits clearly. The key aspects of these regulations include:

  • Daily Driving Limit: Hungarian truck drivers may not work more than 9 hours in one day. This limit is set to avoid fatigue-related accidents and also ensure that drivers are always alert on the road.
  • Weekly Driving Limit: Truckers should spend no more than 56 hours driving during a week. This regulation contributes to balanced working and resting periods for drivers, leading not only to improved health of a driver but also road safety.
  • Biweekly Driving Limit: The total time of driving for any two consecutive weeks has to be up to 90 hours. This biweekly limit prevents long-term fatigue problems among drivers.
  • Mandatory Breaks: 45 minutes rest is required after a period of four and half hours driving continuously. This breakpoint may be interchanged for two intervals. The first period should be 15 minutes or longer. The second interval should be no shorter than 30 minutes. Both periods should be within 4.5 hours.
  • Weekly Rest: Likewise, truck drivers in Hungary are also permitted to take their weekly rest periods inside the cabin of the truck. This is allowed, given that the vehicle has appropriate sleeping accommodations and is parked in a proper area. This rule provides flexibility for drivers, especially those driving long distances, where they have options to rest properly in their cars.

Hungary also has very strict truck driver logbook rules in place that ensure compliance with these rest regulations. Such rules make it mandatory for drivers to record their working hours, periods of rest and distance covered quite accurately. Similarly, this log book is a vital tool for monitoring whether the drivers are adhering to required rest periods and driving restrictions, thus promoting road safety through the prevention of driver fatigue. 

Maximum Truck Weight and Speed Limits 

In Hungary, strict regulations are in place to ensure road safety and the integrity of infrastructure. These regulations correspond to the EU standards and are essential for building a strong, competitive transportation system.

  • Weight Regulations:

- Trucks have a regulated number of the maximum allowed axles and their configuration.

- Two-axled vehicles may carry a total of 20 tons.

- 26 tons is the limit for three axles or articulated vehicles.

- Vehicles that have four or more axles or articulated configurations are limited to 32 tons.

- 3-axle sets are allowed up to 28 tons. A set of four axles can travel for the same weight, not more than 40 tons and from five or even several.

  • Axle Weight Limits:

- The maximum weight for any axle is set at 11.5 tons.

- For a set of twin axles, the limits vary based on the distance between the axles:

- 11.5 tons if the distance is less than 1 meter.

- 16 tons for distances between 1 and 1.3 meters.

- 19 tons for distances between 1.3 and 1.4 meters.

- For a set of three axles:

- 22 tons, provided the distance between axles is less than 1.3 m

- 24 tons for distances greater than 1.3 meters.

  • Dimensional Limits:

- The length of the vehicle (including load) is not wider than 2.60 meters, and it may be no higher than 4 meters.

- Individual vehicles’ length limit is set at 12 meters.

- This means that a semi-trailer truck plus semi-trailers has an overall length limit of 16.5 meters.

- 18.75 meters is the limit for a truck or agricultural truck, which refers to a “slow” vehicle plus one trailer.

  • Special Permits and Route Restrictions:

These heavy trucks that weigh beyond these limits need special permits as they may have limitations on the types of roads to be used; this is particularly so for secondary and local roads. These measures are meant to avoid damaging roads and improve public safety.

  • Enforcement:

These regulations are enforced through weigh stations and random checks. Non-compliance results in penalties, underlining the importance of adhering to these standards for safe and sustainable transportation in Hungary.

Maximum Speed on Various Roads in Hungary

In Hungary, just like in other European countries, there are specific speed limits set for trucks on various types of roads. Below is a breakdown of the speed limits for trucks in Hungary:

  • Urban Areas: In built-up and urban settings, the speed limit for trucks is 50 km per hour. It also makes room for the increased flow of traffic and potential dangers in urban settings.
  • Non-Urban Roads: In secondary and rural roads outside cities, such as non-urban roads, the maximum speed limit is 70 km per hour for trucks. 
  • Dual carriageway and four-lane expressway roads: 70 km/h
  • Highways: For trucks travelling on highways, the speed limit is usually 80 km/h. Highways are designed for faster travel. They have this limit to balance the need for efficient transportation with safety considerations.

Penalties for Traffic Violations in Hungary

In Hungary, adherence to traffic laws is critical, especially for professional drivers. The penalties for violations can be quite severe. The Hungarian traffic authority enforces these laws strictly. They do this to ensure road safety and compliance. Below is a representation of the fines that can be imposed for various offences, including speeding:

Speeding Penalties

It is necessary to follow the rules and regulations of truck driving in Hungary. This makes transportation smooth and legal. With the implementation of these guidelines, truck drivers can travel across Hungary’s roads safely and efficiently.

How Eurowag Facilitates Truck Driving in Hungary?

Hungary’s truck-driving regulations can be tough to navigate. Eurowag offers vital services to facilitate this process. This enables drivers to focus purely on safe driving.

Eurowag Fuel Card: Stress-Free Refuelling

- The Eurowag Fuel Card provides an easy way for truck refuelling. It eliminates the need for using cash and keeping receipts, simplifying refuelling.

- With Eurowag’s large-scale network, drivers can easily find a refuelling station anywhere in Hungary and across Europe.

Eurowag offers its services based on the needs of commercial trucking. It ensures that drivers and companies can concentrate on their main activities. If you want to know more and become a Eurowag customer, contact us today. Find out why more and more trucking businesses rely on Eurowag to run their business operations in Hungary and Europe.