Brexit: driving abroad is changing
Commercial drivers operating in the EU need to prepare for Brexit by making sure they have the right documents.To prepare for deal and no deal scenarios, you need to:
- register trailers for international commercial use weighing over 750kg
- check if you need International Driving Permits and how many you may need
- contact your vehicle insurance provider to get a motor insurance green card
- display a GB sticker on your vehicle
- register for Brexit updates
From 28 March 2019, all commercial trailers over 750kg must be registered to travel from the UK to the EU.
Visit the trailer registration page on GOV.UK for more information
International Driving Permits
If the UK leaves the EU without a deal on 29 March, you might need an International Driving Permit (IDP) to drive in EU and the European Economic Area (Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein).
You can get IDPs from the Post Office.
Read our International Driving Permit guidance for more information about whether you require a permit and which types of permit you need.
Motor insurance green cards
Green cards are an international certificate of motor insurance. If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, commercial drivers may need a green card as proof of third party motor insurance cover.
You should contact your insurer for more information and to get a card.
Read more about vehicle insurance after Brexit
From 29 March, if the UK leaves the EU with no deal, you may need to display a GB sticker even if your vehicle has a Euro-plate (a plate with a European flag and a GB label).
The Government remains confident that hauliers won’t need ECMT permits to drive in the EU after Brexit, but we are still progressing contingency plans to prepare for all scenarios.
As part of these contingency plans, we have secured more ECMT permits. We’ll let you know how we’re allocating these shortly.
Want to know more?
The UK Government's Brexit website has information and updates on everything you should do to prepare for Brexit.
You can also register for alerts and further information about Brexit
Source: Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency
Type approval of vehicles with regard to the withdrawal of the UK from the EU (soft Brexit)
Download the document here.
ECMT permit application date extended
The deadline to apply for a European Conference of Ministers of Transport (ECMT) permit has now been extended until 11.59 pm on 18 January 2019.
ECMT permits will allow you to continue operating in the EU after March 2019 in the event of ‘no deal’.
The duty of a responsible government is to continue to prepare for a range of potential outcomes including a no deal scenario.
Short-term (monthly) permits
You will no longer be able to apply for a short-term permit (valid for 30 days). If you are unsuccessful in applying for an annual permit you'll be automatically considered for a short-term permit.
European Commission proposals for continued road freight access
On 19 December 2018, the European Commission proposed steps to ensure that UK hauliers can continue carrying goods into the EU for a limited period after exiting in the event of no deal. Until the detail of these proposals is agreed and adopted by the European Parliament and Council, businesses should continue with their contingency plans. An ECMT permit will provide continued access to EU markets whatever the outcome of negotiations.
Read the Department for Transport's response to the proposals
Apply for a permit
Annual and short-term permits will be allocated for 2019 after the application period has ended at 11.59pm on 18 January 2019. They won’t be allocated on a first come first served basis.
Find out more information and how to apply for an ECMT permit.
Source: Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency
Post-Brexit lorry permit applications open
The deal recently negotiated by the UK Government provides a framework for continued open transport access between the UK and EU for both businesses and consumers.
We do not want or expect a no deal scenario. It is however the duty of a responsible Government to continue to prepare for a range of potential outcomes including the unlikely event of no deal.
So you can prepare contingency plans for the unlikely event of a ‘no deal’, you can apply for an ECMT permit to continue operating in the EU after 29 March 2019.
Applying for permits
Application for 2019 are open. You can apply any time before 11:59pm on Friday 21 December 2018.
Permits are not allocated on a first come first served basis, so you can apply at any time during the application period. The application period ends on 21 December 2018 and permits will be allocated in early 2019.
You'll need to be registered on the online Vehicle Operator Licensing system to apply.