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Foreign Driving Licences

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The driver must have held a full driving licence for a minimum of 12 months. If the valid from date is not available on the license then please ask the customer for this information. This will be acceptable as validation of this section of the rental criteria.

Licences Issued Overseas

Licences issued overseas must be clearly identifiable as a driving licence, must entitle the licence holder to drive the category of vehicle that they wish to rent and must be valid to be used in the UK. Otherwise an International Driving Permit (see 4B below) will be required.

For driver qualification purposes, refer to the table below (if in any doubt, contact the Insurance Department for advice):

Visitors to UK (Date based upon when the customer arrived in the UK) Resident (Date based upon when the customer became resident) Vocational Licence Holder (entitles you to drive minibuses / large lorries)
Northern Ireland Licence valid. Can exchange for UK licence. Licence valid. Can exchange for UK licence. Licence valid. Can exchange for UK licence.
Jersey,Guernsey & Isle of Man Under 12 months: licence valid.

Over 12 months: must have UK licence.

Under 12 months: licence valid.

Must exchange for UK licence after 12 months and within 5 years of becoming resident.

Under 12 months: licence valid.

Over 12 months: must have UK licence.

Gibraltar & Designated Countries Under 12 months: licence valid (only up to 8 seats & up to 3 tonnes).

Over 12 months: must have UK licence.

Under 12 months: licence valid.

Over 12 months: must exchange for UK licence.

Cannot drive large vehicles (minibuses / large lorries) unless in possession of UK licence. Australia,
Barbados,
British Virgin Islands,
Canada,
Falkland Islands,
Hong Kong,
Japan,
Monaco,
New Zealand,
Republic of Korea,
Singapore,
South Africa,
Switzerland
Zimbabwe.
EU and EEA Countries Licence valid and shows full entitlement of vehicles which may be driven.

Important: please also refer to WI 147 for licences issued in Republic of Ireland.

EU Licence is valid until age 70.

BUT if the driver became resident in the UK aged 68-70 their EU licence is valid for 3 years after becoming a resident.

Important: please also refer to WI 147 for licences issued in Republic of Ireland.

Licence valid:

Until age 45 or for 5 years after becoming a resident – whichever longest.

If aged over 45 but under 66 or for 5 years after becoming a resident – whichever shortest.

If aged 65 or over 12 months after becoming a resident.


Andorra,
Austria,
Belgium,
Bulgaria,
Croatia,
Czech Republic,
Republic of Cyprus,
Denmark,
Estonia,
Finland,
France,
Germany,
Greece,
Hungary,
Iceland, 
Ireland,
Italy,
Latvia,
Liechtenstein,
Lithuania,
Luxembourg,
Malta,
Netherlands,
Norway,
Poland,
Portugal,
Romania,
Slovenia,
Slovakia,
Spain,
Sweden.
Other Countries Licence valid (only up to 8 seats & up to 3 tonnes). Under 12 months: licence valid.

Over 12 months: must have UK licence.

Cannot drive large vehicles (minibuses / large lorries) unless in possession of UK licence.

 

 

International Driving Permits

International Driving Permits are not valid in the country of issue. An International Driving Permit is a translation of the driving licence; it is not valid on its own. Any customer presenting an International Driving Permit must also present a driving licence from their country of residence with the addresses on both documents being the same.

An International Driving Permit is required when the original driving licence is not written in English.

Some countries do not issue International Driving Permits. Therefore, a Letter of Endorsement issued by the relevant Embassy/Consulate is acceptable.

 

Chinese Driving Licences

A Chinese driving licence is acceptable if:

  • it is accompanied by an International Driving Permit
  • it is presented with a notary translation