The bicycle and the traffic code in Spain:

Traffic code:

The General Traffic Code is a useful tool when making cycle trips.

Some of the most notable articles:

  • Article 36: Drivers obliged to use the hard shoulder.
  • Article 55: Sporting competitions, cyclists’ gatherings and other events
  • Article 59: Intersections
  • Article 64. General rules and cyclists’ priority over other road-users
  • Article 118. Helmets and other protection elements.
  • Annex II: Section 2.ª Cyclists’ gatherings

The General Traffic Code regulates group cycling, but a group does not signify a peloton.

The cyclists are required to ride on the hard shoulder of their right-hand side as long as it is driveable and wide enough, otherwise they are allowed to use the necesary space at the right-hand side of the road.

On long descents with curves, when safety reasons allow for, cyclists can leave the outer arch and use the roadway area the require.

As an exception, cyclists can ride parallel to each other, in pairs, edging as far as possible to the right-side of the road forming a row in frames without visibility, and when they caussing congestion. In the highways, cyclists can only ride on the hard shoulder, without using the roadway in any case. However, with regard to bicycle traffic rules, the traffic Code is not limited to the few highlighted articles, and applies in its entirety.

Road safety law:

You can not get penalty points for riding a bicycle: Annex II of the Road Safety Law states: “One can only get penalty points in case that the conduct of a vehicle requires them to have an administrative authorization”. To date, riding a bicycle does not require an official authorization.

Cyclist’s Guide:

In the Cyclist’s Guide composed by the General Directorate of Traffic (DGT) we find that cyclists are generally advised to avoid motorways. However, cyclists over the age of 14 are allowed to drive on the shard houlders of the motorways, unless a sign prohibits it for justified reasons of road safety. In that case, a signpost will indicate an alternative route. See signage on page 19.