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British People Require IDP After Brexit

On December 31, 2020, at 11 p.m., the Brexit transitional phase ended thanks to a last-minute deal between the UK and the EU.

Because the UK decided to leave the EU in 2016, there has been considerable conjecture about what this would entail for British drivers who travel to other European countries. Since then, the laws governing driver’s licenses, auto insurance, driving permits, and various other issues have never been as clear as they are now.

The conclusion is that driving in Europe won’t be as straightforward as when we “transitioned” towards the end of 2020. Despite the UK’s trade agreement with the EU, which has made driving in Europe a little bit easier than it would have been, it won’t be as affordable.

You may still take steps to lessen the expenses and anxieties associated with driving across Europe. As a UK driver traveling inside the EU, there are other processes you are now required to follow, not the least of which is the ever-changing Covid regulations, which may differ from nation to nation.

International Driving Permits (IDP)

The exciting thing is that most of us won’t require an International Driving Permit (IDP) to operate a vehicle on the continent. The bulk of UK drivers can still drive in Europe with their valid UK license, thanks to our last-minute agreement with the EU. Persons possessing paper licenses as opposed to photocard ones, even those with permits granted in Gibraltar, Guernsey, Jersey, or the Isle of Man, are exempt.

Regardless of whether you fall under one of these categories, the government’s current recommendation is that you consult with the embassy of the nation where you want to drive to determine if you’ll require an IDP. However, the DVLA warns that more than three million UK residents still own paper-only licenses.

Getting an IDP seems like it would be pretty difficult, yet all it takes is a trip to the post office. You may use one of the numerous internet businesses that offer this task for you, but most will charge a handling fee, and some might not be entirely trustworthy.

To be eligible for IDP, you should be 18 years old and have a UK driving license. The 1949 and 1968 Convention are required to move across Europe, but you need the latter to drive to Andorra.

Car Requirements

Suppose your vehicle has smart auto-dipping and corner-sensing LED headlights. In that case, you won’t legally need to install stickers to change the dipped beam for driving on the left since your car’s GPS will use that information to determine where it is and alter its lights appropriately. If not, you’ll have to modify the direction of your lights by installing beam benders. Good luck convincing a furious Belgian traffic cop that your new Audi’s lights adjust themselves automatically in Flemish. Bring some stickers with you, just in case.

Most of the standards mentioned earlier were legally binding as of December 31, 2017. As we’ve previously said, we anticipate significantly stricter enforcement going forward. If you follow the guidelines, you ought to be Perfectly all right.

Kit For British Drivers

Make sure your vehicle is equipped with complete EU driving equipment. There should also be high-visibility jackets for each passenger on board, a breathalyzer kit that meets EU standards, an appropriate warning triangle, and other items. These kits may be purchased at any port in the UK, or you can buy them in advance for far cheaper online.

Vehicle License Plates and GB stickers

You need a second GB sticker if your car’s number plate has the GB emblem positioned above the blue EU flag. You should be OK if the GB emblem or the Union Flag are shown on your car’s license plate. Even so, it is advisable to put a GB sticker on; in other words, do whatever it takes to please the local authorities.


If you want to drive in the EU, confirm your insurance coverage details with them well before your trip. This is important since there is a new concern about what will happen if you are in an accident. According to legal and automotive experts, you must file a claim against another motorist in the nation where the accident occurred if you are involved in a collision inside the European Union and need to do so. Additionally, you may need to state your claim in the regional tongue. Full European insurance coverage will be priceless by that time.

Documentation and other Procedures

When driving in GB, there are a few things other than going that you should keep in mind. If you want to use your phone while traveling in the EU, check with your cell operator to be sure you won’t incur any unexpected extra roaming fees. The majority of mobile service providers, however, have not yet modified their policies on roaming throughout Europe.

Additionally, if you are traveling from the UK to any country in the EU, your passport must have at least six months remaining on it. Furthermore, remember that your blue European Health Insurance Card won’t be renewed after its validity; instead, it will be replaced with a new Global Health Insurance Card after your present card has expired. Check the expiration date on this.

Don’t simply automatically join the closest EU customs queue at the ports; instead, search for booths labeled UK customs to avoid being turned away. Also, keep in mind that the number of items you may bring back to the UK duty-free has a limit. Even though the limitations on smoking and alcohol have been marginally raised, it’s now practically identical to entering the UK from outside the EU.