Planning a holiday to Europe in your motorhome or campervan?
We don’t yet know the outcome of the Brexit negotiations but here we offer some guidance should you be planning a motorhome trip outside of the UK to a European country (including Norway, Iceland, Switzerland, Serbia, Andorra or Liechtenstein).
If the UK leaves the EU without a transition exit deal, you’ll legally need to carry a Green Card in the EU and may need an International Driving Permit (IDP) as well as your UK licence.
What do I need to do now?
If you intend to drive in any EU country, Norway, Iceland, Switzerland, Serbia, Andorra or Liechtenstein on or after March 29th, please request a Green Card via our web form as a precaution. This will be issued FREE if requested online.
We suggest you do this 10-14 days before you go on holiday to make sure you get your Green Card on time.
If you are already in Europe and will still be there after March 29th, we might need to issue you a Green Card in a PDF format. You can also request this via the web form.
If the UK secures an agreement before Brexit, it’s likely that you will be able to drive in the EU as you would normally, with no need for a Green Card.
We’ll update this blog post as and when the Brexit negotiations develop, or you can keep an eye on the Government website updates.
What is a Green Card?
A Green Card is issued by your motor insurance company and is a standardised document recognisable at borders. It demonstrates that you have the necessary minimum motor insurance cover in place to be on the roads. This also applies to travel across the Northern Ireland / Republic of Ireland border.
Drivers have to physically carry the Green Card with them when driving.
We can issue a Green Card for a maximum of 270 days in any one policy period and can include all the countries you are travelling to, so it can cover more than one trip.
Obtaining a Green Card is precautionary. If the UK postpone or call off withdrawal from the EU, or leave with a renegotiated deal, or if the European Insurance Authorities confirm Green Cards will not be needed then you may not need to carry one.
Insurance validity in the EU
If you’re a UK motorist, with a UK registered vehicle, you’ll continue to hold the same motorhome insurance cover as you do now.
Our motorhome insurance policy provides the legal minimum insurance cover required by law for travel to countries who are members of the European Union or European Economic Area (EEA). A full list of these countries can be found on the Government’s website. Many customers choose to extend this cover from the minimum required third party liability cover, to include comprehensive cover for damage to their motorhome and equipment. Your motorhome insurance policy schedule will tell you which cover you have in force.
As of March 29th 2019, drivers from the UK will likely need extra documentation when driving in the EU.
International Driving Permit (IDP)
In the event of a no-deal Brexit, you will likely need an International Driving Permit (IDP) as well as your UK licence. The IDP is a multi-language translation of your driving licence and currently costs £5.50. They can be bought from a post office.
There are three different types of IDPs, depending on the EU country you are driving in. You might need more than one if travelling through several countries. You can find up-to-date information on the Government’s website.
If you hold a UK licence, you should not need an IDP to travel in Ireland after the March 29th – just your licence.
Do I need a European Accident Statement form?
This is a standardised carbonated document making it easier for drivers involved in an accident to exchange details and facts of any incident. They are not compulsory, so you do not need to have one in your car.
We do however provide these to customers automatically when they first take out fully comprehensive European cover, or on request, for peace of mind in the event of an incident or accident.
What documentation should I have when driving in Europe?
When entering the EU you might be asked for documentation. The decision of what is needed will be for the individual border authorities. It’s also possible that you might be subject to police checks, or you may need to present documentation at the scene if you’re involved in an accident.
As we don’t yet know the enforcement requirements applicable from March 29th, or beyond, we feel it appropriate that our customers consider having the following up-to-date documents to hand when driving in Europe or the EEA.
Having these documents may be precautionary, but could offer reassurance that your travel plans can go ahead as anticipated.
- A copy of your insurance documentation (including your certificate of insurance)
- Vehicle registration document (V5C) – the government recommends you carry this.
- Green Card
- Driving Licence/s
- International Driving Permit/s as applicable
- European Accident Statement Form
For more information
The Government has guidance about preparing to drive in the EU after Brexit, as well as information about passports, travelling to Europe with pets, taking a vehicle out of the UK for less than 12 months and the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC).
Note: All details correct at time of publication but may be subject to change.