A UK driving licence is valid if you drive in the EU both for work and as a visitor.
When the UK leaves the EU on March 29th 2019 – if there is no deal – then your driving licence will no longer be valid for use in EU countries. You will need other accompanying documents. This includes if you wish to hire a vehicle.
You will need an International Driving Permit (IDP). There are 2 types of IDP required by EU countries. In some countries you will need 1 type and in others the 2nd kind.
1949 Geneva Convention on Road Traffic – Cost £5.50
This lasts for 12 months. This is required in Ireland, Spain, Malta and Cyprus. Currently it can be purchased at around 90 Post Offices or by mail order from 2 private companies. This mail order service will cease on 31 January 2019.
It will be valid from the day of issue. If you already have one it will continue to be valid.
1968 Vienna Convention on Road Traffic – Cost £5.50
This lasts for 3 years. These will come into force in the UK on March 28th 2019. A UK issued 1968 convention IDP would be recognised in all other EU countries, plus Norway and Switzerland.
You will need both types of IDP if you are driving in the different EU countries which require them.
“From 1 February 2019, the government will begin providing IDPs. From this date, you will be able to apply for both 1949 and 1968 types of IDP at 2,500 Post Offices across the UK. The Post Offices which can offer this service will be announced in early 2019.”
UK Citizens living in the EU
“Depending on the laws of the EU country you move to, you may need to take a new driving test in that country.”
You can exchange your UK driving licence for one for the EU country you live in if you do so before 29th March 2019. If you return to the UK you can exchange it again for a UK one.
EU citizens coming to/ living in the UK after Brexit
Arrangements for EU licence holders who are visiting or living in the UK would not change. Drivers for both business and pleasure will be able to drive without a separate IDP in the UK.
Reporter: Fiona Grahame