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Take five minutes to check your driving licence

Posted: Sun Sep 5, 2021 10:16am
37 replies1005 views8 members subscribed
AndrewLaEnvia

AndrewLaEnvia

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Posts: 61

56 helpful points

Location: Roquetas de Mar

Joined: 10 Jan 2019

Hello,

Having returned from a great three weeks at our apartment (first time in 12 months) I just had a word of advice for everyone looking to hire a car. 

I'm usually a stickler for checking all the details of a trip but must have been distracted this time by all the additional requirements.  On picking up my hire car it was brought to my attention that my driving license was now a UK license and since I renewed (change of address in UK) it does indeed only contain the Union flag.   The EU flag has been removed, makes sense, complete oversight by me which cost me £300 on picking up my car.

The hire clearly stated in their regs that if I did not hold an EU/International driving licence I would have to pay an additional insurance/levy and would not be allowed to carry on with my own annual car hire policy/excess process.  My UK driving license is no longer recognised.

Whatever peoples views on this (it doesn't matter) please check your driving licence before travelling when hiring a car.  Applying for an annual international driving license from your post office is cheap, easy and quick...yes a pain in the arse and something we previously never had to worry about, how long will that list get.  

Just a reminder to add this to your list in the future so you don't get caught out like me.

Hope many of you are getting to enjoy your holiday homes this summer and those permanently in Spain are enjoying your growing freedoms. Stay well everyone.  

Netian

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 10:50am

Posts: 3

4 helpful points

Location: Roquetas de Mar

Joined: 6 Sep 2021

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 10:50am

AndrewLaEnvia wrote on Sun Sep 5, 2021 10:16am:

Hello,

Having returned from a great three weeks at our apartment (first time in 12 months) I just had a word of advice for everyone looking to hire a car. 

I'm usually a stickler for checking all the details of a trip but must have been distracted this time by all the additional requirements.  On picking up my hire car it was brought to my attention that my driving license was now a UK license and since I renewed (change of address in UK) it does indeed only contain the Union flag.   The EU flag has been removed, makes sense, complete oversight by me which cost me £300 on picking up my car.

The hire clearly stated in their regs that if I did not hold an EU/International driving licence I would have to pay an additional insurance/levy and would not be allowed to carry on with my own annual car hire policy/excess process.  My UK driving license is no longer recognised.

Whatever peoples views on this (it doesn't matter) please check your driving licence before travelling when hiring a car.  Applying for an annual international driving license from your post office is cheap, easy and quick...yes a pain in the arse and something we previously never had to worry about, how long will that list get.  

Just a reminder to add this to your list in the future so you don't get caught out like me.

Hope many of you are getting to enjoy your holiday homes this summer and those permanently in Spain are enjoying your growing freedoms. Stay well everyone.  

really useful to know this. Sorry you had to pay so much out.  Do you know which IPD is necessary for Spain mainland cant seem to find this info anywhere

1926 1949 or 1968 ?

AndrewLaEnvia

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 1:31pm

AndrewLaEnvia

Original Poster

Helpful member

Posts: 61

56 helpful points

Location: Roquetas de Mar

Joined: 10 Jan 2019

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 1:31pm

Netian wrote on Mon Sep 6, 2021 10:50am:

really useful to know this. Sorry you had to pay so much out.  Do you know which IPD is necessary for Spain mainland cant seem to find this info anywhere

1926 1949 or 1968 ?

Hello, so the plot thickens.

Legally you do not require an IDL if you're driving for less than six months.  As part of the withdrawal agreement agreement was made with the majority if not all EU member states. 

However, some rental companies are unscrupulously (the one I used) making this part of their regs for hire.  Legal or not it is in their small print and it is up to you to find it and it's not all of them. 

Advice currently is get an IDL just in case for all driving in Spain, but your question as to which one is difficult as the gov website does not advise becasue it claims you do not need one.  If you are, they recommend contacting the consulate for advice...it's wonderful isn't it.  The gift that keeps on giving.  Whether legislative or not, we will be taken advantage of in the coming years over this.  

AH

LosPardoslady

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 1:46pm

LosPardoslady

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Posts: 618

450 helpful points

Location: Vera

Joined: 22 Jun 2019

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 1:46pm

It's an international driving permit not a licence.  It's used in conjunction with your UK driving licence.  Available from the Post Office in the UK (£ 5.50+passport sized photo) valid for a year. 

Not sure which number it is.  The numbers are different for Spain and France. 

Personally, I think I would just boycott the hire companies that are forcing people to do this but may be easier said than done. 

Netian

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 1:57pm

Posts: 3

4 helpful points

Location: Roquetas de Mar

Joined: 6 Sep 2021

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 1:57pm

seems to me that the UK government advice applies to driving your'e own UK car in Spain and not a hire car. I've done a  bit of digging after looking at the hire car policies and noticing that several of them are all asking for an International driving licence, if you don't have the euro mark on your'e UK licence also if you get pulled over for a spot check you can be fined so worth the £5.50 charge at the post office hopefully they will issue me with the correct year  - just to be on the safe side.. ah well more paperwork to sort - may need a filing cabinet instead of luggage at this rate ................

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Netian

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 2:10pm

Posts: 3

4 helpful points

Location: Roquetas de Mar

Joined: 6 Sep 2021

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 2:10pm

Do I need an International Driving Permit in Spain?

You need to have an International Driver's Permit to be granted rights to drive in Spain. Generally, an IDP is not a stand-alone document that can replace your local driver’s license, as you need both. An IDP translates your local driver’s license to different languages. It is duly issued by the International Driver’s Association and widely acknowledged by over 150 different countries. Without the International Driver's License, you could face punishment from local authorities.

Spain requires you to have an International Driver's Permit to be able to drive, but you don't have to take a Spanish driving test to get an IDP. It is just a translated document asserting your authorization to go, given that you already have a valid local driver’s license. You must always carry both your IDP and your domestic driver’s license. Having an IDP in Spain means that you could enjoy the major tourist destinations without worrying too much about legalities and other paperwork.

Found this info on the international drivers association website 

AndrewLaEnvia

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 2:29pm

AndrewLaEnvia

Original Poster

Helpful member

Posts: 61

56 helpful points

Location: Roquetas de Mar

Joined: 10 Jan 2019

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 2:29pm

LosPardoslady wrote on Mon Sep 6, 2021 1:46pm:

It's an international driving permit not a licence.  It's used in conjunction with your UK driving licence.  Available from the Post Office in the UK (£ 5.50+passport sized photo) valid for a year. 

Not sure which number it is.  The numbers are different for Spain and France. ...

...

Personally, I think I would just boycott the hire companies that are forcing people to do this but may be easier said than done. 

Hi, quite right, permit it is.  Either way, UK gov website says you don't need one if only driving for up to six months https://www.gov.uk/driving-abroad/international-driving-permit 

AndrewLaEnvia

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 2:31pm

AndrewLaEnvia

Original Poster

Helpful member

Posts: 61

56 helpful points

Location: Roquetas de Mar

Joined: 10 Jan 2019

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 2:31pm

Netian wrote on Mon Sep 6, 2021 1:57pm:

seems to me that the UK government advice applies to driving your'e own UK car in Spain and not a hire car. I've done a  bit of digging after looking at the hire car policies and noticing that several of them are all asking for an International driving licence, if you don't have the euro mar...

...k on your'e UK licence also if you get pulled over for a spot check you can be fined so worth the £5.50 charge at the post office hopefully they will issue me with the correct year  - just to be on the safe side.. ah well more paperwork to sort - may need a filing cabinet instead of luggage at this rate ................

The withdrawal agreement includes hire cars, not 100% on why some (not all) hire companies are asking for this, trying not to be cynical.  Unless one is different from the other. 

AndrewLaEnvia

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 2:33pm

AndrewLaEnvia

Original Poster

Helpful member

Posts: 61

56 helpful points

Location: Roquetas de Mar

Joined: 10 Jan 2019

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 2:33pm

Netian wrote on Mon Sep 6, 2021 2:10pm:

Do I need an International Driving Permit in Spain?

You need to have an International Driver's Permit to be granted rights to drive in Spain. Generally, an IDP is not a stand-alone document that can replace your local driver’s license, as you need both. An IDP translates your local driver’s...

... license to different languages. It is duly issued by the International Driver’s Association and widely acknowledged by over 150 different countries. Without the International Driver's License, you could face punishment from local authorities.

Spain requires you to have an International Driver's Permit to be able to drive, but you don't have to take a Spanish driving test to get an IDP. It is just a translated document asserting your authorization to go, given that you already have a valid local driver’s license. You must always carry both your IDP and your domestic driver’s license. Having an IDP in Spain means that you could enjoy the major tourist destinations without worrying too much about legalities and other paperwork.

Found this info on the international drivers association website 

So it would appear the UK gov website doesn't agree with this?  As everyone has said, for a few quid, best to get and be safe and avoid my error.

AH

LosPardoslady

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 8:33pm

LosPardoslady

Helpful member

Posts: 618

450 helpful points

Location: Vera

Joined: 22 Jun 2019

Posted: Mon Sep 6, 2021 8:33pm

It's not an error it's just some hire car companies pulling a fast one.  However £5.50 or be at the mercy of the hire car company.  Know which I would choose. 

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