Driving in Europe After Brexit
The rules and regulations you need to be aware of
Many of us are pleased to see the world opening up again following COVID lockdowns and its various travel restrictions, but where does that leave you when it comes to driving in Europe?
Now we’ve officially exited the EU, there are rules and regulations you need to be aware of before beginning your journey...
You may require an International Driving Licence
You’ll be pleased to hear that most drivers in the UK will still be able to use their standard driving licence to permit them driving in EU countries - as well as Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.
However, there are some exceptions to this rule, when an International Driving Permit (IDP) will be required. If you have a paper driving licence only, or a licence issued in a British-owned island or country - such as Gibraltar, Guernsey, Jersey or the Isle of Man - you may need to purchase an IDP.
The best way to determine if you need an IDP is to contact the embassy of the country you are planning to visit, to check if it is required. The good news is that an IDP can be purchased at Post Offices across the UK for just £5.50.
To find out what kind of IDP is applicable to you, please click here.
What about your insurance?
In June this year, the European Commission agreed that UK drivers will no longer need to obtain a green card when entering an EU country in order to prove they had insurance.
The new rule came into effect for all UK-registered vehicles - including those from Northern Ireland - on the 1st August following a month-long transition period, meaning that you no longer need to apply for a green card through your insurer to drive across the border.
Remember that you will still need your standard insurance documents to hand when travelling abroad and we recommend you check with your car insurance provider that you are covered when driving overseas.
GB number plate stickers are changing
The current rules for driving abroad state that you must display a GB sticker on the left-hand side of your vehicle’s number plate. From the 28th September, however, this rule is changing so that you’ll need to display a UK sticker instead.
If you already have a union flag displayed on your number plate, the GB sticker (soon to be the UK sticker) needs to be placed underneath it. Also bear in mind that you cannot put the flag or letters on the number plate margin, and that each sticker should be no more than 50mm in width.
What other documentation do you need?
When taking your vehicle out of the UK, it’s important to take your vehicle log book (V5C) with you if the duration of your visit is less than 12 months. It’s worth noting that your V5C must show your current address in the UK, so if you’ve moved recently, make sure this is up-to-date before you travel.
If your vehicle is hired or leased, you will only be permitted to take it abroad temporarily and you’ll need to have a VE103 certificate to prove you’re allowed to drive it overseas. A VE103 can be purchased from a number of websites, including the AA, RAC, and BVRLA (British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association).
Travel with confidence
If you’re looking for a new or used car that you can trust to get you from A to B on your European road trip, then you’ve come to the right place.
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