Grostenquin Miscellaneous

So You Want to Drive in France


Drivers Licences

Click on the description text to view the photograph.
  1. Exterior of International Drivers Licence - 13 May 1963.
    Courtesy Sterling Worth.

  2. Interior of International Drivers Licence - 13 May 1963.
    Courtesy Sterling Worth.

  3. Exterior of RCAF Drivers Licence - 13 May 1963.
    Courtesy Sterling Worth.

  4. Interior of RCAF Drivers Licence - 13 May 1963.
    Courtesy Sterling Worth.

  5. International Drivers Licence - 14 August 1961.
    Courtesy Lucien St-Hilaire.

  6. International Drivers Licence - 14 August 1961.
    Courtesy Lucien St-Hilaire.

  7. Front cover of the Driver Training Course card - May 1960.
    Courtesy Archie Gill.

  8. Progress report of the Driver Training Course card - May 1960.
    Courtesy Archie Gill.

  9. International Drivers Licence - February 1960.
    Courtesy Don Gelling.

  10. International Drivers Licence - 26 November 1959.
    Courtesy Archie Gill.

  11. International Drivers Licence - 23 October 1958.
    Courtesy Don Norrie.

  12. Front of RCAF Drivers Licence - 23 April 1958.
    Courtesy Chuck Myles.

  13. Back of RCAF Drivers Licence - 23 April 1958.
    Courtesy Chuck Myles.

  14. Front of RCAF ME Operators Permit - 26 April 1957.
    Courtesy Chuck Myles.

  15. Insert of RCAF ME Operators Permit - 26 April 1957.
    Courtesy Chuck Myles.

  16. Back of RCAF ME Operators Permit - 26 April 1957.
    Courtesy Chuck Myles.

  17. Front of RCAF Drivers Licence - 23 August 1954.
    Courtesy Len Wickens.

  18. Back of RCAF Drivers Licence - 23 August 1954.
    Courtesy Len Wickens.

  19. RCAF Drivers Licence - 25 February 1954.
    Courtesy Claude Bernier.



Licence Plates

It appears that RCAF personnel at 2 Wing were making use of standard French licence plates in 1952 and 1953.


The following detail is an extract from 1 Air Division Historical Records:

December 1953
Private Motor Vehicle Registration

Negotiations were completed with French officials in Paris for the uniform licensing of private motor vehicles in France. AF plates were to be substituted for the existing TT Plates.


Automobiles owned by RCAF personnel in France were registered under the "AF" system sometime in 1954. The licence plates of vehicles registered at RCAF Station Grostenquin all started with the number 2. Licence plates issued to RCAF personnel in France between 1954 and 1962 were similar in design to that of the French plate. The shape of the licence plate changed and took on a standard 6x12 design in 1962.



Click on the description text to view the photograph.
  1. Licence Plates for 2 Wing (1954-1962 style).
    Courtesy As Indicated.

  2. Licence Plates for 2 Wing (1962-1964 style).
    Courtesy As Indicated.

  3. Licence Plate display (1961).
    Courtesy Gary Davis.

  4. Example of the "TT Licence" which preceeded the AF Licence plates - June 1953.
    (L-R) LAC Jean-Guy Choquette and LAC Grenier. Grenier had just brought the car to 2 Wing from Fontainebleau. TT plates were used for diplomats or visitors.
    Courtesy Jean-Guy Choquette.

  5. Closer view of the "TT Licence" plate - June 1953.
    Courtesy Jean-Guy Choquette.

  6. Yet an even closer view of the "TT Licence" plate - June 1953.
    Courtesy Jean-Guy Choquette.



Automobile Insurance

Automobile insurance was a necessity in France. Do you remember driving out the main gate, travelling about 200 to 250 yards, and there they were on the right - a number of small buildings that served as sales outlets for automobile insurance.

There appeared to be two major players: American Military Insurance (AMI) and the Fortune Insurance Company.



Click on the description text to view the photograph.
  1. AMI Carte Internationale d'Assurance Auromobile (green card) - 14 September 1960.
    Courtesy Archie Gill.

  2. American Military Insurance Certficate - 14 September 1960.
    Courtesy Archie Gill.

  3. AMI Carte Internationale d'Assurance Automobile (green card) - 27 January 1960.
    Courtesy Archie Gill.

  4. Fortune Insurance Company handout - December 1959.
    Courtesy Don Gelling.

  5. RCAF "Driving Point System" - December 1959.
    Courtesy Don Gelling.

  6. The "Point System" part I - December 1959.
    Courtesy Don Gelling.

  7. The "Point System" part II - December 1959.
    Courtesy Don Gelling.

  8. American Military Insurance Certificate - 14 September 1959.
    Courtesy Archie Gill.



Gasoline Coupons

When a vehicle was registered under the AF system, the owner was entitled to purchase US Quartermaster Gas coupons. This enabled the owner of the vehicle to purchase gasoline at approximately 25 cents per gallon. The Quartermaster coupons were rationed on the basis of the size of the car as follows:

60 BHP and above

400 litres per month

59 BHP and below

200 litres per month

Motor Cycles

80 litres per month

Gasoline coupons were purchased at an outlet in the same building that housed the Snack Bar, the news stand and the PX upon presentation of your vehicle registration (or authorization letter in the case of a rental) and ID card. These coupons were redeemable at most ESSO gas stations, and at BP gas stations on the Autobahn.

The buyer had to ensure that he purchased gasoline coupons in accordance with his needs. As an example, gasoline coupons were valid for specific countries. French gasoline coupons could only be redeemed at gas stations in France. If you were planning a trip to Germany, then you had to ensure that you purchase German gasoline coupons.

Also of interest is the monthly entitlement. You could not legally obtain an amount beyond your monthly entitlement. If you were entitled to 40 litres per month, then you could purchase up to that amount and no more. Gasoline coupons were sold in different increments 5 litre books, 10 litre books and 20 litre books. While it was not legal, it was not unusual to rely on friends to help out when you required additional amounts for lengthy driving during vacations.

Do happen to have any memories or detail pertaining to how RCAF personnel made use of gasoline coupons?

If so - please send us an email message - and we will gladly add your information to this article.



Click on the description text to view the photograph.
  1. Front of 5 Litre retail gasoline coupon - June 1964.
    Courtesy Dwayne Backer.

  2. Front of Gasoline Ration Identification Card - June 1960.
    Courtesy Gary Davis.

  3. Back of Gasoline Ration Identification Card - June 1960.
    Courtesy Gary Davis.

  4. Front cover of Gasoline Coupon booklet 2-C 024031 valid in Germany - September 1954.
    The booklet size was 3.5 by 2 inches
    Courtesy Claude Bernier.

  5. Gasoline coupons from booklet 2-C 024031 valid in Germany - September 1954.
    One gallon gas coupons were 1.75 by 2 inches
    Courtesy Claude Bernier.

  6. Front of Gasoline Ration Identification Card - June 1955.
    Courtesy Larry Bodnar.

  7. Back of Gasoline Ration Identification Card - June 1955.
    Courtesy Larry Bodnar.

  8. Gasoline Ration Identification Card - June 1954.
    Courtesy Claude Bernier.

  9. Gas Tag number - June 1953.
    The rest of the story.
    Courtesy Claude Bernier.



Registration Cards

Click on the description text to view the photograph.
  1. Front of Certificate of Title and Registration for a Scooter - 23 June 1960.
    Courtesy Gary Davis.

  2. Back of Certificate of Title and Registration for a Scooter - 23 June 1960.
    Courtesy Gary Davis.



Automobile Sales Invoices

Click on the description text to view the photograph.
  1. Original Bill of Sale for our Mercedes 220 - 25 January 1960.
    This vehicle was picked up at the factory in Sindlefingen, Germany on 25 January 1960.
    Courtesy Archie Gill.

  2. Copy of the Bill of Sale for the pick up of the Mercedes - 25 January 1960.
    Courtesy Archie Gill.



Photographic Credits

All photos are used with permission.


Return to the Details Page

E-mail
Return to Top of Page

About This Page

This page is located at

http://www.grostenquin.org/misc/gtmisc-2.html

Updated: June 29, 2004