If you are a PA with a non-GB (Great Britain) driving licence it is important to know whether you are legally able to drive on UK roads.
The general rule for any driver with a valid, non-GB driving licence is that you are permitted to drive in the UK for up to 12 months from the date of your arrival in the country. You can only drive vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes and with a maximum of 8 passenger seats. Your vehicle must be insured.
If you wish to stay longer, you need to apply for a provisional licence within those 12 months. You then need to take and pass a UK driving test to gain a GB driving licence.
If you have not passed your test when the 12-month period ends, you are no longer permitted to drive on UK roads. You must wait until you pass and a valid GB driving licence has been issued.
Some countries have an agreement in place where a valid driving licence can be exchanged for a GB licence (and vice versa) without the need for retaking the test. The current list of participating countries is shown below.
If you have a driving licence from one of the following countries, you can drive in the UK for up to 12 months from your date of arrival. Within that time, you need to apply to exchange your driving licence. You will not need to retake your driving test.
Australia, Barbados, British Virgin Islands, Canada, Falkland Islands, Faroe Islands, Gibraltar, Guernsey, Hong Kong, Isle of Man, Japan, Jersey, Monaco, New Zealand, Northern Island, Republic of Korea, Singapore, South Africa, Switzerland, Zimbabwe.
Licence exchanges are offered to people with a permanent UK address, who have lived in the UK for a minimum of 185 days within 12 months from your date of arrival and hold a valid licence. Please note: you have to send your current licence as part of the application process.
Before Brexit, an EU driving licence was accepted for as long as it remained valid. From January 2021, this is no longer the case. At present, you should follow the rules for non-GB licence holders.
It is hoped that driving licence exchange agreements will be made with many EU nations. This is currently under negotiation and we will endeavour to update the information as it is published on the Government website.