Driving in Europe

If you are planning to take your vehicle to Europe this summer, there are certain steps required so you can legally drive abroad, plus some good tips on what else to consider.


  1. Owned vehicle – Vehicle log book – V5C or;
  2. Leased Vehicle – Vehicle on Hire Certificate and letter of authorisation – you will need to obtain a VE103A certificate either from your lease company or BVRLA / FTA
  3. Your current full UK driving licence – ensure you take your full licence with you
  4. Foreign motor insurance – ensure this covers European travel

Will Brexit impact my European travel plans?

Even with the continued uncertainty around Brexit, there are still some simple steps you can take to ensure you can continue to drive in Europe. Based on the current government advice, it is worth considering obtaining an International Driving Permit and an Insurance Green Card if you’re planning on driving in Europe after the current Brexit deadline of 31 October 2019. In addition, you should check that your vehicle breakdown cover is still valid in Europe.

What else should I consider before driving in Europe?

Breakdown Cover

We would strongly recommend that you have adequate breakdown cover while travelling in Europe. Check your current cover to see if it includes Europe and look to add on European cover if required. For leased vehicles, this may already be included so check with your lease company.

Vehicle Safety Kit

Many European countries require by law that you carry a first aid kit, fire extinguisher, warning triangle, reflective jacket, headlamp beam reflectors and spare bulbs. An addition in France, is a breathalyser kit. Check your vehicle to see what is provided in the pack provided or purchase any required additional items.  Full packs are sold by the likes of the RAC and the AA.

Vehicle Safety Checks

Ensure you carry out normal vehicle safety checks on your oil, water, windscreen washer fluid, tyre wear and tyre pressure. If your vehicle is likely to be full of passengers and luggage, you should refer to the manufacturer’s handbook for revised tyre pressures. Try to ensure that  if your vehicle is likely to require a service before you return to the UK, to book it in before you travel.

Travel Insurance  / European Health Insurance (EHIC)

To ensure peace of mind when travelling, review your personal travel insurance and obtain the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), which entitles you to reduced-cost, sometimes free, medical treatment that you might need while you’re in Europe. You can apply for an EHIC for you and your family at the post office, although this may change after Brexit.

Travel Plans

Consider sharing your itinerary with family and friends to help ensure your whereabouts are known whilst travelling.