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Updated : 28/04/2017

Driving licence renewal and exchange


If you move to another EU country and the validity of your EU driving licence expires, you will have to renew your licence in the country where you are normally resident.

If your driving licence has been suspended, restricted, withdrawn or cancelled in the EU country which issued it, you will not be able to have it renewed.

Here you can check the formalities for driving licences in your country:

Choose country

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You can have only one EU driving licence. This licence is issued by the authorities of the EU country where you have normal residence. If you change your residence to another EU country, you don't usually have to change your driving licence. You can use your current licence as long as it remains valid.

If you wish, you can voluntarily exchange your licence for an equivalent one in your new country of residence. You will have to prove that you are a resident of that country and that you meet the conditions for having a driving licence (e.g. you have reached the minimum age, your state of health permits you to drive, etc.).

Before the authorities exchange your driving licence, they will contact the authorities in your previous country of residence to check that your driving licence has not been restricted, suspended or withdrawn.

Obligatory exchange

You may be required to exchange your driving licence:

  • after 2 years of normal residence, if you have a driving licence valid for life
  • if you commit a traffic offence in the country where you live

Sample story

Anna moved from Berlin to Barcelona in Spain to take up a new job. After 2 years of normal residence in Spain, the Spanish authorities required her to exchange her German licence, which is valid indefinitely, for a Spanish one. Anna's new Spanish licence is valid for 10 years and she is now bound by Spanish rules on driving licences.

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