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Has Brexit affected rules for driving abroad in Europe?
04 May 2022

Has Brexit affected rules for driving abroad in Europe?

Here are the effects of Brexit on UK drivers who want to travel abroad.

With Brexit having come fully into place, there are many important things that people now need to consider. These include considerations that you previously may have taken for granted, such as what you need when driving abroad in Europe. Driving in Europe after Brexit may look a little different than we are used to, so let’s take a look at how this might impact you on your next European break.


Has Brexit affected rules for driving abroad in Europe?

While it is still legal to take your UK car abroad for travel purposes, there have been some changes to driving rules in Europe for international drivers. For example, UK drivers do not need to show a green card as they enter the EU as proof of insurance, as has previously been the case. You should still carry your regular insurance documents.


What are different rules for driving in Europe?

There are existing rules in Europe which differ from our driving rules in the UK. For example, you must have an in-date first aid kit present in your vehicle. Depending on the country you drive in, it may be a legal requirement to also have a functional spare tyre, a warning triangle, a reflective jacket, and even a fire extinguisher.


Is a driving licence enough?

Going forward after Brexit, you may be wondering if you need extra paperwork as well as your UK driving licence in order to drive in Europe. As of now, most drivers with a UK photocard licence will still be able to use it to drive when in EU countries. However, some drivers may be required to present an International Driving Permit (or IDP), which you may purchase at your local Post Office. You will require a different IDP based on where you are visiting - you may need a 1968 IDP for driving in France and Germany, and a 1949 IDP for Andorra. It is best to look into this thoroughly before driving.

IDPs are generally necessary if you have a paper licence rather than a photocard. This requirement also applies to citizens who have had their licences issued in locations such as the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man, and Gibraltar.


Has anything else changed since Brexit?

If your vehicle still has GB stickers on the number plate, you will be required to replace this with a UK sticker, whether or not you have GB on your number plate. It will also become necessary for you to have your V5C log book with you as the owner of the vehicle, or have a VE103 form for hire cars or those you are leasing. This proves that you are legally allowed to take the vehicle out of the United Kingdom.

Having assessed the Brexit driving restrictions in Europe and how Brexit has changed the way you might think about driving on your next holiday, we hope you feel more prepared. With a little extra thought and preparation, driving in Europe should still be straightforward and easy to navigate, even after Brexit.