Permits may be needed to drive in EU after no-deal Brexit

UK driving licences may no longer be valid on their own to drive in the European Union if there is a no-deal Brexit, the Government has warned.

Drivers could need International Driving Permits (IDP) if the EU does not agree to recognise UK licences, according to new guidance.

They may be turned away at borders or face enforcement action if they have not obtained the correct documents.

There are two types of IDP required by EU countries, depending on whether they have ratified the 1949 or 1968 conventions on road traffic.

This means some itineraries will require both permits, such as when people drive into France and then Spain.

The documents cost £5.50. The 1949 type is available over the counter at around 90 Post Office branches or by mail order from two private companies.

The mail order service will cease on January 31, and the Government will begin providing IDPs the following day.

Cars in Calais
Cars in Calais

Motorists will be able to apply for both types at 2,500 Post Office branches across the UK.

The Department for Transport believes up to seven million permits could be requested in the first 12 months after Brexit.

AA president Edmund King said: “This will be an extra burden for UK drivers wanting to take a holiday abroad. We envisage quite a rush on post offices next year for the £5.50 IDPs if no deal is reached.

“Hopefully an agreement can be reached to prevent further red tape and expense for drivers.”