IF you’re planning on driving to Europe after Brexit, you might need an International Driving Permit (IDP) as well as your driving licence.
However, there are three different IDPs – and you could need all three if driving to different countries.
British drivers visiting Europe may soon need a new permit[/caption]
An IDP is essentially an official document that translates your existing driving licence into several languages and allows you to drive in over 140 countries.
Vicki Sansom, travel expert at easyCar.com, told Sun Online Travel: “Currently, UK driving licences are valid in the EU, meaning Brits can drive abroad with no hassle.
“However, if the UK exits the EU with no withdrawal agreement in place, UK residents are likely to need one or both of two different International Driving Permits (IDPs) to allow them to drive or hire a car in Europe, in addition to their UK driving licence.”
There is also a third IDP which may be required.
The three IDPs cover different countries, with the 1926, the 1949 and the 1968.
Currently three different IDPs are available
One of the IDPs is covered by the 1949 Geneva Convention on Road Traffic and lasts for 12 months.
According to the government website, following a no deal Brexit, it would be recognised in Ireland, Spain, Malta and Cyprus.
The second IDP, governed by the 1968 Vienna Convention on Road Traffic, is valid for three years as long as you have a current UK driving licence.
The 1968 IDP will be recognised in all other EU countries following no deal, as well as Norway and Switzerland.
In the event of a no-deal, a 1926 IDP will be needed to drive around Liechtenstein, which lasts one year.
Which IDP you need will depend on where you’re going to[/caption]
The driving permits can be bought for £5.50 at more than 2,500 branches of the Post Office, with a valid UK driving licence and a passport photograph.
They are available immediately but some offices could face shortages depending on demand.
Last month, furious holidaymakers found a number of Post Offices around the country had run out of the IDP documents, according to ITV.
Vicki told Sun Online Travel: “Since you can’t apply for one more than three months before you travel, it is important to take into account your holiday dates and consider when you need to apply by.
IDPs are available from the post office for £5.50[/caption]
“It’s well worth applying ahead of the UK’s official Brexit date regardless of what happens so that you can avoid any chance of a rush of applications and a backlog in dealing with the administration following Brexit.”
Another issue that drivers may want to look into is insurance.
Vicki said: “In the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal, motorists might need to carry a ‘Green Card’ from their insurance party to prove they have third party insurance, which is the legal minimum level of cover, to drive in Europe.
“Previously, the ‘Green Card-free circulation area’ saw the abolishment of Green Card checks at EU countries’ borders. This covered Andorra, Serbia, Switzerland and all EU countries.
“Getting hold of a Green Card shouldn’t be tricky – drivers just need to phone their insurance companies to ask for one or otherwise risk picking up a fine abroad.”
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Brits will not need a visa to travel to Europe for short holidays, Sun Online Travel previously revealed.
This is despite previous fears of a US-style visa which could see Brits paying up to £6 to enter countries in the EU.
However, trips longer than 90 days could need a visa.