Motorists planning to drive to Europe post-Brexit have been warned they may need extra documentation or they could be breaking the law.
Martin Pitchford, said with so much uncertainty still surrounding Brexit, motorists should be prepared for all outcomes.
“Currently drivers with a UK driving licence don’t need any additional documentation to operate or rent a car in Europe. But in the event of a no-deal Brexit, UK holidaymakers could be required to apply for an International Driving Permit if they want to travel in Europe. And the Association of British Insurers has advised that motorists should contact their insurance company too in order to arrange a Green Card to take with them.”
Mr Pitchford said Green Cards would be required under EU regulations as proof of insurance if there is no-deal.
“The cards are supplied by your insurer and you should contact your insurance company well in advance of the date you’re planning to travel – if you fail to arrange a Green Card and travel without one, you may be breaking the law. The same requirements will apply to EU motorists travelling to the UK – and to anyone who drives across the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.”
Mr Pitchford said freight companies planning to transport goods into the EU after March 29 could also be affected.
“Despite an agreement between the relevant European insurance authorities in May last year that waived the need for Green Cards for freight customers if there was a no-deal Brexit, the European Commission has not confirmed this is the case. So insurance companies are warning freight companies they should err on the side of caution and plan on the basis of Green Cards being required.”
Mr Pitchford said travel insurance would continue to work in the usual way and holidaymakers should have their documents or their insurer’s emergency contact details with them.
“If there is severe disruption at ports or airports, then airlines, travel agents or credit card providers would be your first port of call for financial compensation. But if you’ve exhausted all those options, and you have travel disruption cover in place as part of your travel policy, you may be covered against some financial losses, but that will depend on your individual policy so you’ll need to check with your insurer.
“As the uncertainty over Brexit continues, it’s important that motorists are prepared for whatever outcome is finally agreed, in order to ensure their holiday plans run smoothly.”