Latest updates for UK driving licence exchange in Spain

Following the UK’s exit from the European Union, one issue has been stressing Expats who have already made the move to Spain more than others, which is the UK driving licence exchange.

Now the DGT and the British Embassy have both released updates regarding the progress made in the UK driving licence exchange talks.
The DGT UK driving licence exchange update
Current information from the DGT website.
“As of the 1st of March 2022, the system for driving licences issued by the British authorities will be that established for licences issued in non-EU third nations.
Driving licences issued by the British authorities will be valid for driving in Spain for a period of six months, from the holder’s date of entry or from the date of obtaining their legal residence in the country.
The United Kingdom ceased to belong to the European Union effective as of the 31st of December 2020, so all traffic agreements within the EU are no longer applicable to holders of licences issued by the UK:
– As of the 1st of January 2021, licences issued by the British authorities will enable you to drive in Spain until the 28th of February 2022 and will not be valid for driving in our country from that point onwards, the established in article 21 of the general driver’s regulation being of application from said date.
– For those in possession of a British driving licence, who requested the exchange, replacement, or renewal before the 31st of December 2020, we remind you that they will be processed provided that their verification by the United Kingdom authorities before the 1st of January 2021 has taken place. Applications submitted after the 30th of December 2020 will not be processed.
– If you did not request an exchange before the 31st of December 2020, you will have to obtain a new Spanish driving licence.
The British Embassy UK driving licence exchange update.
Take from the ‘Brits n Spain’ embassy Facebook page.
As you know, at the end of last year, the Spanish Government extended the grace period during which you are able to drive in Spain using a valid UK licence to 28 February 2022. We know, however, that the end of February is not far off and many of you have concerns about what happens then.
We remain fully committed to reaching a long-term agreement with Spain, so that residents can exchange their UK driving licences without taking a test, as Spanish licence holders can in the UK and as UK licence holders can in the vast majority of other EU member states. Negotiations are ongoing and today (Friday 14 January) we are holding the latest in a series of meetings with our Spanish counterparts to continue discussions.
Of course, we cannot provide any guarantees, so it is important that – if it is imperative for you to drive – you consider all your options, which may include looking into taking a driving test now.
We will continue to keep you updated on developments. Follow us here on Facebook and make sure you are registered for updates at

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Written by

Claire Gordon


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