Out Of International Drivers Permits – Post Office

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling causes chaos with international driving permit changes

  • The decision has caused lengthy queues at the post offices offering the permits 
  • The change in policy is credited to under fire Transport Secretary Chris Grayling 
  • The change comes while some are trying to prepare for potential No Deal Brexit

‘Failing Grayling causes post office chaos’ after axeing postal applications for international driving licences – just as people are preparing for No Deal

Under-fire Transport Secretary Chris Grayling has caused havoc by axeing postal applications for international driving permits – just as huge numbers of motorists are preparing for a No Deal Brexit.

Previously the permits could be obtained from the AA and the RAC, but since February the only way to get one is by going in person to one of a limited number of post offices. However they are running out of forms as they struggle to cope with the rush.

British licences are recognised throughout the EU but that would no longer be the case after a No Deal exit, when motorists arriving in Europe without international driving permits (IDPs) could be sent home. According to the National Audit Office, a No Deal Brexit could result in a surge in demand for up to seven million IDPs, which are used in more than 140 countries.

Applicants preparing for this scenario have been forced to wait in lengthy queues at the 2,500 post offices offering permits. Demand has been such that some branches have run out of the forms for the permits, which cost £5.50.

A Department for Transport spokesman said the AA and RAC had been axed from the system to make the process ‘consistent, quick and simple’.

The AA had repeatedly warned at the start of the year that demand was increasing, but the Government persisted with the plan.

The number of different permits available to drivers is contributing to the confusion. The 1926 IDP allows drivers to travel through Liechtenstein, while the 1949 IDP allows drivers to motor through Spain, Iceland, Malta and Cyprus.

If holidaymakers wish to drive through all other EU countries, as well as Norway and Switzerland, they need to get the 1968 IDP.