United Kingdom

Paperless driving licence: June 8 changes



As of today, the paper part of your driving licence is meaningless and you can destroy it. The DVLA has scrapped it in a bid to save money – around £8m – and generally make licencing less of a faff.

The details previously stored on the paper portion of your licence, such as your driving record and misdemeanours, will now be stored online and can be accessed through the DVLA website.

So what does this change mean for you? Very little on a day-to-day basis, as you’ll simply continue to carry your plastic card with you whenever needed.

The main difference, and where there is potential for hassle, is when it comes to hiring a car.

This is one of the very few times that you actually need the paper part of your licence as hire firms use it to check it for endorsements.

So from now on, you’ll need to collect a code from the DVLA website and hand this over to the hire firm. You can also get a print out of your record (which kind of defeats the point of destroying your old paper licence in our opinion).

It’s vital you remember to do this, or you could be turned away by the hire firm. We have a more detailed explainer on the licence changes here, but the bottom line is that not much is changing unless you need to hire a car.

In which case, make sure you get your code – and it couldn’t hurt to phone the hire firm and confirm their systems have been updated to accept it.

Finally, check out our guide to the top car hire tricks to avoid.


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