Car registration in another EU country – Hungary
Using a vehicle on public roads
As an EU citizen moving to Hungary, you can use your foreign license plate only for a limited period. After that, you have to register your vehicle in Hungary (except if it is not used on public roads).
As the private user of an EU registered vehicle, you may use the same roads free of charge as any Hungarian citizen. Most motorway sections and other roads are toll roads. Heavy goods vehicles are subject to a general road use charge.
If you change your place of residence to Hungary, there are various formalities you have to comply for the vehicle's successful registration process.
Registering your car in Hungary
To register a vehicle brought in from abroad (EU or non-EU country), you must present the following with your application:
- proof that the vehicle is covered by compulsory third party liability insurance
- proving the ownership (with sales contract or invoice etc.). For foreign contracts, an official Hungarian translation is required. The National Translation Agency (named as Országos Fordító és Fordításhitelesítő Iroda – shortly: OFFI) can make an official translation from original documents. They are available in some places in Hungary. Their website is the following: http://www.offi.hu/kapcsolat
- proof of payment of the property tax submitting the vehicle's previous registration certificate part I and - if it was issued - part II in original (or its COC document for new vehicles)
- authorisation document (if it exists )
- paying the registration tax for those vehicles which will be registered in Hungary for the first time
- the vehicle's Hungarian technical exam is required even it has a valid foreign MOT
- client identification document.
For natural persons:
- personal identity document (identity card, card-type driving licence, passport) and residence card
- if the procedure is carried out by proxy: the proxy's personal identity document and power of attorney.
For legal persons:
- specimen signature certified by a notary or copy specimen signature certified by a notary
- proof of authorisation in order to act on behalf of the company
- identity document and residence card of the natural person representing the company
- in the case of lorries of a gross weight exceeding 3.5 tonnes and buses, a certificate from the municipality clerk with jurisdiction over the registration authority is necessary about the suitable place where the vehicle will be actually kept.
A fee of HUF 6 000 (altogether HUF 12 000) is charged for:
- issuing the registration certificate ('forgalmi engedély' - allows the vehicle to be put on the road)
- issuing the ownership certificate („jármű-törzskönyv') which is a credit-card format document
Fee for issuing a temporary registration certificate: HUF 2 500
Fee for issuing a technical inspection sticker: HUF 585
For more information, contact the Governmental Hotline.
They can provide information in English and are available 24/7. The administrative formalities can be completed at any point of single contact (PSC, in Hungarian: "kormányablak").
Find more about the local offices and their opening hours. The time limit for processing applications is 21 days, but immediate processing is also possible if the application has been correctly submitted.
As an EU citizen moving to Hungary, you may, under certain conditions, use your vehicle even it is still registered in another EU country. According to national law, you have to register your vehicle in Hungary if you have:
- an address here and
- your normal place of residence is in Hungary (you live in Hungary for a minimum of 6 months per year).
You are exempt from registering your car in Hungary if you:
- are a company that operates abroad
- don't resident in the territory of Hungary
- use the vehicle - within six months in total – not more than 30 days in Hungary and the holder permitted its use in a contract mentioning the period
- get the vehicle from a foreign holder for using it domestically while performing regular work.
According to national law, a vehicle with a foreign registration plate issued by a non-EU country is allowed in Hungary for the legitimate use for a maximum period of six months from its entry if it has customs clearance. After that period the vehicle has to be re-registered.
The competent authority for checking vehicle documents on public roads is the police. More information is available on the website of the Hungarian National Police Headquarters.
If you are a citizen of another EU country and a resident in Hungary as a student:
- you do not necessarily need to register your vehicle while you are studying in Hungary. If it is your own or belongs to and is normally kept by your parents and they are not resident in Hungary. If you plan to study in Hungary for more than six months, you will need a document certifying your permanent address abroad, together with an official translation of it into Hungarian or, if you are not the owner or usual holder of the vehicle, a certified document authorising you to use it (e.g. a statement of consent from your parents);
- as the private user of a foreign registered vehicle, you may use the same roads free of charge as any Hungarian citizen. Most motorway sections and various other roads are toll roads. Heavy goods vehicles are subject to a general road use charge. More information on road tolls
- if the vehicle is covered by valid international third party liability insurance, there is no need to take out a separate policy for your stay in Hungary.
You do not necessarily need to provide documentary proof of enrolment at the educational establishment in order to be exempt from the registration requirements for driving your vehicle in Hungary.
In case of checks by the authorities, you are advised to include in the official Hungarian translation of your documents the fact that you are staying in Hungary for study purposes and are using the vehicle in that capacity.
If you are a student but also working in Hungary, the same conditions apply.
Pensioners, second homeowners cross-border commuters
If you are crossing the border to work you should register your vehicle with the authorities in your country of residence. If you are using a foreign-registered vehicle, you will need to present documentary proof of your foreign place of residence if you are checked by the police. If you are using a company-owned vehicle, you will also need documentary proof that you are authorised to use the vehicle in Hungary.
If you are an EU citizen and own a property (e.g. a holiday home) in Hungary, and are using the foreign-registered vehicle - within six months in total – more than 30 days, you must register the vehicle in Hungary.
You are exempt from this requirement only if you regularly commute across the border (e.g. you work abroad and use your vehicle there) and can prove that your habitual place of residence is abroad, or have a document authorising you to drive the foreign-registered vehicle regularly in Hungary.
Temporary registration plates
If you buy a car in another EU country, you need temporary registration plates to bring it back into Hungary. These plates will be recognised by the Hungarian authorities if checked on your way back to Hungary.
If you buy a vehicle in Hungary and want to drive it home, the Hungarian authorities issue a temporary 'Z' number plate. The relevant formalities can be completed at the government information centres upon presentation of:
- proof of ownership
- valid third-party liability insurance and
- a certificate of roadworthiness.
You will need to pay the following fees:
- a pair of registration plates HUF 13 000
- individual registration plate HUF 8 500
- registration vignette fee: HUF 1 550
- temporary registration certificate fee: HUF 2 500
- request for temporary withdrawal from circulation HUF 2 300.
- 30-day insurance cover note: approx. HUF 10 000 (depending on the insurance company).
EU citizens are liable to pay the following taxes when registering and using a vehicle in Hungary:
- Registration tax: the table in Annex 1 to Act CX of 2003 on registration tax (in Hungarian only) shows the relevant amounts
- Vehicle tax: Act LXXXII of 1991 on motor vehicle tax (in Hungarian only) shows the current tax amounts payable for operating a motor vehicle.
If you do not put your vehicle on the road in Hungary, it is exempt from the above tax.
Registration tax does not have to be paid if you are:
- a representative of a diplomatic or consular mission or
- a representative of an international organisations benefiting from immunity under international agreements (this continues to apply when definitively leaving Hungary after the vehicle registration number has been returned).
- a representative of an administrative, technical and auxiliary staff of these missions and organisations, and their family members, who are not of Hungarian nationality, and
- the owner of Z-registered vehicles purchased in Hungary for export abroad or being re-exported after having been kept in Hungary without a valid registration certificate, or
- the owner of vehicles bearing a temporary Z registration plate to replace an invalid foreign registration plate or one which has been lost or damaged in Hungary
- the owner of vehicles of historic interest.