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Updated : 07/07/2017

Driving licence renewal and exchange

You can have only one EU driving licence at any one time. This licence is issued by the authorities of the EU country where you usually live.

If you move to another EU country and your driving licence is lost, stolen, damaged or expired, you should renew, replace or exchange it in the country where you usually live.

Also find out what you have to do if your driving licence is lost or stolen while you are travelling abroad

Exchanging your licence

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in your previous country of residence to check that your driving licence has not been restricted, suspended or withdrawn.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

When living abroad, you will have to exchange your driving licence for a local one:

  • if your licence is lost, stolen or damaged
  • after 2 years of usual residence, if you have a driving licence valid for life (only if required by the country where you live)
  • if you commit a traffic offence in the country where you live

Once you exchange your original driving licence for a local one, you will be subject to that country's rules (e.g. on validity periods and medical checks).

Sample story

Monica lives in Cyprus and has an Italian driving licence which has been damaged. To get a new licence, she will have to exchange her Italian licence for a Cypriot one. She will receive a licence from Cyprus that is valid for 15 years, instead of 10 years as in Italy.

Renewing your licence

If you move to another EU country and your EU driving licence expires, you will have to renew your licence in the country where you usually live.

If your driving licence has been suspended, restricted, withdrawn or cancelled in the EU country which issued it, you will not be able to have it renewed.

Country-specific information

Are you living abroad and need to renew your licence or replace a lost one? Check the formalities in the country where you live:

Choose country

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