The Road Safety Authority (RSA) has warned that anyone living in Ireland who holds a UK (including Northern Ireland) driving licence must exchange it for an Irish driving licence, before October 31, 2019, in the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal.
If there is a no-deal Brexit, then after this date, if you are living in Ireland, your UK driving licence will no longer be valid to drive here.
There is an opportunity now to exchange your licence in good time and be certain you have a valid driving licence when the UK leaves the EU.
A statement from the RSA read: “If you wait till close to the UK exit date of October 31, you will face possible lengthy delays in exchanging a UK licence, and the National Driver Licensing Service (NDLS) cannot guarantee when you will have a valid licence to drive here in Ireland.
“For this reason those living in Ireland who hold a UK driving licence are strongly urged to act now and exchange their licence.
“To exchange your licence you must complete a licence application form and present this, the correct fee and your UK licence at any NDLS centre. You can make an appointment online at www.ndls.ie to attend any of our 36 NDLS centres. There is also a walk in service, but depending on queues you may have to wait to be seen.”
More information on how to exchange your UK licence can be found at ndls.ie.
Over 30,000 UK licences have been exchanged for an Irish driving licence by the NDLS this year, compared to the 6,000 for the whole of 2018, according to the RSA.
In the vast majority of cases, when exchanging a UK licence, the driver will have all valid licence categories on their driver licence included on the Irish licence. There are some limited exceptions where what are known as national licences categories cannot be transferred to the Irish licence. You may need to speak to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) in the UK to find out if you have any national categories on your UK/NI licence.
More information on driver licences and Brexit can be found on www.ndls.ie and on gov.ie/brexit, the Irish Government’s website to help businesses and citizens around the country to prepare for Brexit.