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Hiring a car in Europe? Do you have the paperwork completed?

If you’re planning a trip to Europe in the coming months and intend to drive or hire a car, you’ll need to be prepared.

That’s because you’ll require a green card to showcase that you have adequate insurance cover in place – a failure to have one could see you prevented from crossing the border.

From the day that Britain leaves the EU, having the card – an internationally recognised certificate of having third party insurance cover – will be a necessity.

In addition to that, drivers will also need an International Driving Permit and the government is encouraging people to get theirs as soon as possible, in order to avoid potential disappointment on their travels.

Although there is no defined exit date at present given the political uncertainty, planning ahead should help to minimise any disruption or other issues which may arise.

The Association of British Insurers has told motorists to prepare the documentation now, as they could be fined or stopped at ports without it if they attempt to drive in Europe.

It is also thought that car hire desks will turn away individuals who cannot produce the IDP and green card when requested.

Preparing for travel

Green cards are issued by a driver’s insurer and can take a week or more to process – account for this and contact your insurer should any issues arise.

In some instances, drivers can be sent the card to print off, but it needs to be printed on double-sided green paper and without a border.

Drivers will also need two green cards if they are towing a trailer or caravan – one for each part of the vehicle and should account for local road regulations too, which can vary from region to region and from country to country.

IDPs meanwhile can be purchased from Post Offices for £5.50 and last for three years from the point at which they are bought.

There are three different permits and you may need more than one if you are visiting several countries.

For instance, the 1949 convention permit is required for driving in Spain, Malta, Ireland and Cyprus while a 1968 permit covers the rest of the EU countries, as well as Switzerland and Norway.

If you intend to drive in Liechtenstein, you’ll also need a 1926 permit.

Don’t forget to have adequate travel insurance in place for your trip either, as that can provide an extra layer of protection when overseas.

Date Created: 03/06/2019

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