Deadline to change your driving licence is extended
The Brexit transition period of the UK leaving the EU ends on December 31st, and you as a resident have to get your paperwork in order. One of these necessities is to change your UK driving licence for a Spanish one, for which the deadline has been extended until July 1st 2021.
It has been announced that in Spain, including the Balearic and Canary Islands, you can continue to use your current licence until July 1st 2021, but from that date you may need to take a driving test to exchange it for a Spanish one.
But If you hold a licence from Gibraltar, Jersey, Guernsey or the Isle of Man, you should exchange your licence before 1st January 2021; otherwise you may need to take a test.
If you are resident in Spain, you need to exchange your UK licence for a Spanish one and it is still advised to do this as early as you can so as not to experience any problems during the process.
To start the process of exchanging your UK driving licence for a Spanish one by 1st July 201, follow these 2 steps:
Submit your application form to the DGT, the Spanish Department of Traffic, either electronically via the DGT’s online portal (if you have a digital signature ‘firma digital’, or by using the Cl@ve app, or by calling 060.
In some provinces, you may be able to submit your application in person at your local office. Check with your local office before you go.
Check you have requested the correct exchange option on the application form:
- if your licence has expired, or is due to expire in the next few months, you should choose ‘renovación’
- if you have lost your licence, or it has been stolen, you should choose ‘sustitución’
- for all other requests, choose ‘canje’
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Three days after you have submitted your application, request an appointment, using the DGT’s website, to complete the final exchange.
You will have to give your UK licence to the Spanish Traffic Authority at your appointment. They will provide a temporary driving permit called an ‘autorización temporal para conducir’, to use until your Spanish licence is processed. This document is only valid in Spain and not in any other country.
You can exchange your driving licence in a different province to the one you live in. You can also instruct a representative, such as a registered ‘gestor’, to complete the process for you.
If you live in Spain but are not yet registered as a resident, you may be able to submit your application to exchange if you have a foreigners’ identity number (NIE). However, you must have a Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero (TIE) when you attend your appointment to complete the licence exchange.
Whether your UK licence has been verified for exchange by the end of 2020 or not, you will be able to drive in Spain using your UK licence until 30th June 2021.
Read full information on the special measures for UK licence holders on the Spanish Traffic Authority website (use the option in the top-right hand corner to translate pages to English). Future rules on exchange and recognition of UK licences are not yet agreed.