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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just read this on a respected Facebook group:

We had a lengthy discussion with the Ambassador & UK Embassy team yesterday and thought it would be helpful to share the latest updates on the hot topics at the moment:
1) DRIVING LICENCES - the French administration are not yet treating this with the priority we feel it deserves. This appears to be for a variety of reasons including that licence expiry is a new phenomenon in France (the FR licence was valid for life until recently). We have recommended that the issue is escalated. The new rules will, however, need to go before the Conseil d'Etat which is itself a long process before ANTS can update their procedures and start exchanging again. We continue to underline the gravity for those that now have expired or soon-to-expire licences. The Ambassador committed to raising again at his regular meeting with Sandrine Gaudin, Secrétaire General et conseiller Europe du Premier Ministre, and considering other routes to escalate the issue.”
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The EU have made it clear that they will not progress any other matters relating to Brexit until the UK government actually starts following the agreements that they signed eg NI fishing etc
Other EU countries have sorted it, this is primarily a French issue. It means that unless it is sorted no-one with a UK licence will be able to drive in France after 31 Dec 2021.
 

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Have the other EU countries sorted it? (Though I suppose Spain and maybe Italy are the only other countries where it is potentially an issue.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Have the other EU countries sorted it? (Though I suppose Spain and maybe Italy are the only other countries where it is potentially an issue.)
Some have, not all. Each country is making it's own rules so not specifically an EU problem.
 

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Have the other EU countries sorted it? (Though I suppose Spain and maybe Italy are the only other countries where it is potentially an issue.)
Spain hasn't. There is much wailing and gnashing of teeth on social media about the fact that UK citizens resident in Spain who had not at least applied to exchange their UK driving licences for Spanish ones by 31 December 2020 now face having to take a Spanish driving test to get a Spanish licence, and it is illegal for them to drive in Spain on their UK licence.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Spain hasn't. There is much wailing and gnashing of teeth on social media about the fact that UK citizens resident in Spain who had not at least applied to exchange their UK driving licences for Spanish ones by 31 December 2020 now face having to take a Spanish driving test to get a Spanish licence, and it is illegal for them to drive in Spain on their UK licence.
In France we were not allowed to exchange in 2020 unless the licence was about to expire or penalty points had to be added.
 
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Here is a typical tale of woe from a Spanish resident who, like all the rest who failed to exchange their licences for Spanish ones when they should have done, now simply can't believe that the rules for third country nationals apply to them.


"I am self employed in Spain, i have several vehicles all insured, all up to date with the circulation tax, ITV etc etc....

I was given my oficial residency in january (the TIE). Unfortunately i never swapped my UK drivers licence for a spanish one in trafico before the 31 of december. I was pulled over last week by the guardia civil and they said to me that i have until the 2nd of june to change my drivers licence to a spanish one. Well, unfortunately, according to my gestor, internet articles and the information given on the website of the DGT, i have to take a driving test, a medical test and pay a driving school their fees. The overall cost will be about 350€ according to the lady i spoke to the in the driving school. She told me that all this will be a process that could take up to between 4 to 6 months!!!!!! The guardia civil have told be that i have up to the 2nd of june to change it. I am paying taxes and the self employed social security fee every month and if i cant drive i wount be able to do my job. I will lose all my customers. Apparently the fine of not having the correct drivers licence can be anywhere between 100 to 3000€!!!!!!!!

Help me please what can i do to get out of this mess?? Surely their is something i can do."
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Here is a typical tale of woe from a Spanish resident who, like all the rest who failed to exchange their licences for Spanish ones when they should have done, now simply can't believe that the new rules apply to them.


"I am self employed in Spain, i have several vehicles all insured, all up to date with the circulation tax, ITV etc etc....

I was given my oficial residency in january (the TIE). Unfortunately i never swapped my UK drivers licence for a spanish one in trafico before the 31 of december. I was pulled over last week by the guardia civil and they said to me that i have until the 2nd of june to change my drivers licence to a spanish one. Well, unfortunately, according to my gestor, internet articles and the information given on the website of the DGT, i have to take a driving test, a medical test and pay a driving school their fees. The overall cost will be about 350€ according to the lady i spoke to the in the driving school. She told me that all this will be a process that could take up to between 4 to 6 months!!!!!! The guardia civil have told be that i have up to the 2nd of june to change it. I am paying taxes and the self employed social security fee every month and if i cant drive i wount be able to do my job. I will lose all my customers. Apparently the fine of not having the correct drivers licence can be anywhere between 100 to 3000€!!!!!!!! "
You missed my point, we could not exchange in 2020, we did nothing wrong. Now we're stuck
 

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In France we were not allowed to exchange in 2020 unless the licence was about to expire or penalty points had to be added.
I sent in my paperwork in March 2019 - before the original Brexit deadline. They kept it for a year, sending it back in March 2020 saying as my licence was not going to expire shortly (it expires the 30th of this December) and I had not done anything that required a deduction of points, they were not going to do the exchange. They did, helpfully, include the original paperwork, saying I might be able to use it when I reapplied.

I looked on the UK website concerning licence exchange, and EU citizens can quite easily and relatively inexpensively (£35) exchange theirs for a UK one. I can understand France making things difficult for UK citizens if the UK had done the same thing, but as the process has been simplified in the UK, what's the problem?

Surely they don't want the Brits clogging up the driving lesson and driving test systems that are already clogged up because of the pandemic?
 

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Mr Macron wants to cause as much pain as possible to the British living anywhere.

Let us fish in your waters and you can drive in France....and have electricity.

Muppet.
 

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Just take a French driving test. It ain't that hard.
It is not too hard and good for the French. The only issue was that as an advanced driver, having taken mutiple advanced courses sponsored by my employer, I was treated like a novice by the instructor; very patronising.
 

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It is not too hard and good for the French. The only issue was that as an advanced driver, having taken mutiple advanced courses sponsored by my employer, I was treated like a novice by the instructor; very patronising.
The reason why I had to take a test I was 15-days too late changing my non EU license; I received bad advice from company who assured me that I could continuing driving on my old license. I now have a 326 cv car with an “A” much to local amusement.
 

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Many people here could indeed take a test, in fact many could have done so a while ago given Brexit.

Each EU country has different licence exchange agreements with other countries, the UK does not currently have a licence exchange agreement with France and the UK knew that it would need agreements for its citizens in the UK long ago.
 

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Many people here could indeed take a test, in fact many could have done so a while ago given Brexit.

Each EU country has different licence exchange agreements with other countries, the UK does not currently have a licence exchange agreement with France and the UK knew that it would need agreements for its citizens in the UK long ago.
The UK does not care about its citizens outside of the UK. As May said we are the citizens of nowhere.
 

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I did. 27/30 for Code de la route and 29/31 for the practical test. I now have a wonderful A on the back of our cars, can only drive at 110 kph on the autoroutes and only 40-years driving experience.
For your car licence you should have taken in proof of your driving history from the relevant department in the country (UK?) where your licence was issued.
 

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For your car licence you should have taken in proof of your driving history from the relevant department in the country (UK?) where your licence was issued.
We were 15-days late exchanging my license; yes our fault, Nantes deemed we had to take a new test. Our first licences were from the UK but they have been changed a number of times since. Our licence were from CH, my wife and I were badly advised. If you retake your test in France you start again and for 3-years you are a novice driver. We have booked supplementary course at the cost of €300 each to reduce the period down to 2-years. We appealed but got diddly squat reply; c'est le bordel.
If anyone has to take their test in France they will get a nice “A” decoration on the back of their cars. Yes, mine was my fault, but any Brits who’s licenses expire, the “A” is the fault of the little brexitainia government.
 
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