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Travelling Abroad – Changes to your Driving Licence.

Have a read of this article from a National Newspaper regarding Changes to travel and your driving licence. If you are concerned about your holiday that you have booked through Ponders please do not hesitate to contact us.

How new DVLA driving licence changes could leave you stranded at an airport abroad

Motoring experts are warning that the changes could have a huge impact on your summer holiday

As well as the plastic photo licence, motorists will now need to obtain a special online code from the DVLA website before they travel. Changes: From June 8, big changes are planned for drivers

Holidaying families could be left stranded at airports in the middle of the night due to a shake-up in the driving licence system, experts have warned. The DVLA is scrapping paper driving licences from June 8 and much of the information – such as fines and penalty points – will be stored online instead. The change could have a huge impact on people wanting to hire cars abroad. As well as the plastic photo licence, motorists will now need to obtain a special online code from the DVLA website before they travel.They will need to key in driving licence details and their national insurance number to get the code, which only lasts 72 hours. This means they may need to log in again if they are driving later in the holiday.

Rui Vieira/PA Wire New DVLA Licence problems
Chaos: Experts are warning against DVLA changes

Hire firms can then call a special hotline to check details and endorsements – but experts fear the new system will cause confusion and delays.

Julie Robertson, a motoring lawyer with Simpson Millar solicitors in Chester Road said: “Drivers are very confused by the new rules and that’s the ones who have come to me for advice.

“A lot of people are still unaware of the new rule changes. If they don’t have a paper licence or don’t take it with them due to the new rules they may find themselves unable to hire a car as some companies may still insist on paper parts to check the driver isn’t banned.

“Families could easily find themselves stranded at airports in the middle of nowhere at night after being refused a hire car. It’s a very worrying situation.”

“There is a helpline for hire companies to ring to get a code and check drivers details but this has restricted hours of service and may be busy so hire companies may not be able to confirm readily. “This may lead to refusal or big queues while they are waiting on the phone.” She advised that drivers get a code plus a pdf print-out of their driving history from the DVLA, adding: “More needs to be done by the DVLA to let people know so they are prepared.”
RAC spokesman Simon Williams added: “Our research shows that, with just over a month to go before the paper counterpart to the photo card licence disappears, 55 percent of drivers are not aware of the planned change.
“There will, no doubt, be a settling-in period where rental companies – particularly abroad – come to terms with the change. ”

A DVLA spokesman said: “Changes to the driving licence will take effect on June 8. There is up-to-date information on www.dvla.gov.uk and we are working closely with the industry to ensure that their systems and processes are ready for the changes before we implement them.”
What do the changes mean for me? If you already have a photocard licence, the DVLA is advising drivers to destroy the paper licence as it will no longer be legally valid.Those who wish to access licence information, such as penalty points, will have to do so online, by phone or via post. Those who do not have a plastic card should keep hold of their paper licence as it will still be valid. If this applies to you, and you need to update your name, address or renew your licence, you will be issued with a photocard only. From 8 June 2015 new penalty points (endorsements) will only be recorded electronically, and will not be printed or written on either photocard licences or paper driving licences. From this date, if you commit an offence you will still have to pay any applicable fine and submit your licence to the court but the way the court deals with the paperwork will change.

 

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