No-Deal Could Mean Special Permits to Drive in the EU

Published on by Adam Redondo Pearce (author)

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Number 10 has issued guidelines warning travellers who are planning on driving to the EU, that they may need an International Driving Permit (IDP).


MPs are set to vote on the Prime Minister’s Brexit deal tonight, but the deal is widely expected to be voted down.


In preparation of a no-deal Brexit, the government has said that drivers with a full UK license will have to buy an IDP if no deal is reached with the EU.


What is an IDP?


An International Driving Permit allows drivers with a full UK license to drive in most overseas countries.


An IDP is required or recommended in over 140 countries – including the USA, Brazil and Hong Kong.


IPDs can be bought on websites like the AA. However, after the 29th March 2019 (after the UK departs the EU), they will only be available in some post offices around the country.


In some countries, this permit is a requirement to enable motorists to drive. However, in some cases, it may only be a compulsory requirement by car hire companies.


How can motorists drive in the EU if there’s no deal?


If the UK left the EU with an agreement, UK licenses would also be valid in the UK. However, if a deal isn’t reached, treaties with different countries may affect the number of permits drivers will need.


“For Spain and France, you’d need two permits.” Says Edmund King, president of the AA.


“There are different treaties signed up by different European countries and for the majority of countries, it will be one permit. But Spain has a different agreement so you would need a different permit for Spain.


“If you were travelling to the south of France and then wanted to drive into Spain to go up to Barcelona for the day, you would actually need two international driving permits.” He adds.

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