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Thursday February 14, 2019 - Email this article to a friend

Driving in the Alps or Pyrenees after 29th March 2019? What's changing? Here's our latest Brexit guide.



Currently, if you have UK driving licence, you are entitled to drive anywhere in the EU.

The UK licence is valid in all the EU countries.

If you are working in the EU, or driving there on holiday, you can do so on your UK licence and insurance.

Also, if you live permanently in an EU country such as France you can simply swap your UK licence for a French one, and swap it back if you return to the UK.

But what happens when the UK leaves the EU, with or without a deal?


Driving licences

EU countries may ask for UK licence holders to purchase an international driving permit in order to be legal on their roads.

Sample UK driving licenceNo longer valid?














Different countries require different types of international driving permits, so you need to check which one to get.

They cost £5.50 and can be purchased only at some large Post Offices. They are not available online.

If you intend to live permanently in an EU country you will have to apply for a driving licence in that country and if you haven't done that before 29th March, you'll probably have to take a driving test in your country of residence before you're given one.

Vehicle insurance

If you have a UK-registered and insured vehicle, your UK insurance will continue to give third party insurance in EU and EEA countries.

But from 29th March you will probably need a Green Card to drive in the EU, EEA and all other countries that recognise Green Cards (including Andorra and Switzerland).

Car hire confusionDriving to the Alps
















The Green Card is - in effect - an international insurance certificate that proves you have the minimum legal cover. You apply for it through your insurer but it could take as long as four weeks. It's currently free.

If you're driving a vehicle registered in the EU country where you live, eg most hire cars, you won't be affected and can continue as normal.

Number plates

If your vehicle has a Euro number plate, which is one that shows both the EU flag and the letters GB, you either need to replace it with one without the EU flag, or display a separate GB sticker (like the old days). The UK government is recommending that you put a GB sticker on the rear of your vehicle, regardless of the type of number plate you have.

Road accidents

UK residents involved in a road traffic accident in an EU or EEA country may need to bring any claim against the other driver or insurer in the EU or EEA country where the accident happened and not in the UK.


If the UK and the EU manage to agree a Brexit deal before 29th March, there will be a transition period, sometimes called the implementation period.

During this period - currently 21 months but there are suggestions that it could be extended - pretty much everything will stay as it it is now, even though the UK is out of the EU.

So, it should be possible to continue driving under the existing rules.


It's anyone's guess.

The rules will depend on the negotiations on the future EU-UK relationship.

Here at PlanetSKI are looking at a variety of specific areas that could directly affect skiers and snowboarders.

See our first guide:

We will also be looking at air travel, mobile phone charges, buying items such as ski or boots while in resort, cigarette and alcohol allowance, the situation for British nationals working in ski resorts + other areas.

For the Spirit of the Mountains - PlanetSKI: Number One for ski news

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