Agreement reached on UK driving license in Spain, but no still no replacement date set

The British ambassador to Spain confirmed that two outstanding issues that had stalled negotiations had now been resolved, although he did not confirm how many "weeks" it would take for British permit holders to swap and get back on the streets.

Hugh Elliott, the British ambassador to Spain, announced some encouraging news on the embassy's social media channels on Friday, November 18, which will at least reassure those who have been working since April 1. There is hope for thousands of British driver's license holders in the UK. May no longer be allowed to drive in Spain.

The British embassy has never clearly explained why the negotiations have dragged on for more than two years without much progress, with the only indication being Spain's demand for data on British license holders in order to be part of the deal, which Britain does not want to agree to.

Some Spanish laws must be approved by Spain's parliament and senate to take effect, and additional legislative steps could add months to the time frame.

UK driving licenses in Spain

Elliott said the fact that the post-Brexit deal to exchange UK driving licenses in Spain would go directly from the Spanish cabinet to the Bank of England was positive, although the "weeks" mentioned by the ambassador could end up adding a few more A countries known for its slow bureaucracy.

However, all British drivers living in Spain - as well as Spaniards and other foreign nationals with a UK driving license - can at least now rest assured that they don't have to take their driving test again in Spain.

Spain and Italy remain the only EU countries without legislation allowing residents to swap their UK driving licenses for Spanish or Italian ones. British tourists in Spain are not affected by the UK driving license debacle.

Join The Discussion

Compare listings

× How can I help you?