Driving in France with a UK license

(Farida Tubelleza) #1

I just got a 2nd car from someone we know here in France and i would like to keep my UK license because i have heard that i can exchanged it for a french one but that means giving up the other eventho its not necessary but i am just worried how to get a good price for insuring an old french car with my british license?

(anon71231711) #2

As long as you have a licence that is valid in France, it will make absolutely no difference to the cost of insurance which country issued the licence. The cost of insurance is based on your driving history, on the car itself, and on the level of cover you require.

(stella wood) #3

Hello Farida …

Please would you put your full name… this is a friendly forum and we all like to know with whom we are chatting…

thanks… :relaxed:

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(Farida Tubelleza) #4

Thanks anna, any insurance company you might be able to recommend?


(anon71231711) #5

I suggest you get several quotes, different companies have different ways of calculating the premium and some will work out more favourable for you than others. Also if you think you should be entitled to a reduction for having a good driving record, check what documents they will need to see. My first insurers needed documents going back 10 years but I think some are less stringent.
Often you get cheaper quotes online but often they’re less flexible for people with no driving history in France, and personally I’d rather pay a bit more to a local broker because I prefer dealing face to face. FWIW I used to be with MMA but I left them after many years for purely personal reasons (one of the people who worked there kept being rude to me, for reasons best known to herself) and now I’m with Allianz.

(James Higginson) #6

I suggest you contact @fabien He’s our resident broker and comes highly recommended :slight_smile:

(Farida Tubelleza) #7

I tried doing online but still found it difficult to fill up the forms so yeah maybe i would go to find a broker somewhere who can accomodate me face-to-face in english. On my bit of reading online i realised that the UK license needs to be renewed every 10 years, i feel so silly being unaware of this but in terms of renewing to another UK license can we do it here from france? I don’t want to transfer mg license here unless i have to apparently when i get points or violations of some sort then i’ll have to because they will need a french address to register the points to… Because it took me so long to pass my driving in UK its like a momento for me that i want to keep forever :see_no_evil: My partner suggest maybe get an international driving license could be a better option.

(Farida Tubelleza) #8

Thanks James I will look into that. Can i ask you quickly because i think i saw 1 of your post before about Neals yard organics, you of them? Because i am trying to connect with other consultants here how they’re offering the business and products because all the materials are in english.

(James Higginson) #9

Sorry, I know nothing about that! Good luck!

(Farida Tubelleza) #10

Sorry about that maybe its not you then. I’ll try and find it again thanks anyway!

(Farida Tubelleza) #11

Ah just found it, think it says advertorial post blog you did back in october :blush:

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(David Martin) #12

Your UK photo licence remains valid until it expires or until you break the law enough to be awarded (or loose as you do in France) several points on your licence. (If that happens you might be instructed to exchange it for a French licence.) If you remain points free you may exchange it for a French licence at any times. As a French resident you cannot renew your U.K. licence, when it is approaching its expiry date and needs renewing you exchange it for a French licence.

(Jonathan Badger) #13

Not quite true - a UK photocard licence is only valid for 10 years before the photo needs updating. However, the right to drive remains until the expiry date(s) shown against the categories.

(Edit: the OP of that quote has since edited their post to correct that error).

Also not quite true. In France you have 12 points to start with & offences remove them until at zero you can no longer drive.

When changing to a French licence beware losing categories you may have had on your UK one. B+E is particularly likely to disappear, which could be troublesome you want to tow a large caravan or trailer behind a category B vehicle. Since earlier this year it is no longer necessary to take a medical to retain your B+E.

If you passed your UK test before 1997 you will have automatically had class C1 (vehicles up to 7.5 tonnes gross) included but this can only be retained on a French licence by taking a medical (equally true of proper large goods & bus categories C & D).

(David Martin) #14

Thank you for the pedantic corrections. I don’t think they add anything to the message given by my post. Anyone with a UK photo licence must renew or exchange it before the expiry date or risk not being able to drive until their replacement licence arrives.
The important points:

  1. You may drive on your UK licence until it expires unless you receive notifications of multiple points requiring you to exchange your licence.
  2. You cannot renew your U.K. licence with the DVLA unless you are a U.K. resident with a genuine UK address.
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(stella wood) #15

So, the reply to @Purplepapillon is…

you can drive on your UK licence until it becomes necessary to change to a French one… (for whatever reason).

When you do change to a French licence… you will need to hand over your UK licence in its entirety (the whole kit and caboodle) … and you will be issued with a French licence…

You are not able to have 2 driving licences… one UK and one French…as for keeping the UK one as a momento… take a photo of it and use it as a screensaver…:laughing:

(Poppy Jones) #16

David, At the risk of being pedantic your post is misleading. The UK licence does NOT expire and need renewing every 10 years, it is the photo that needs updating, the licence is still valid, if the photo is not updated then a hefty fine can be imposed but the licence remains valid, there is a big difference in the expiry of a licence and the need to update the photo. Failing to notify a change of address can also raise a hefty fine but it does not invalidate the licence. A UK licence needs renewing at 70 years of age when the holder self certifies their fitness to drive.

(David Martin) #17

Try being stopped in the UK with an out of date photo licence. When you get a photo licence you have to exchange it for your original paper licence and there is no longer a paper counterpart to the photo card. The card is all there is and it has a renewal date.
That is all semantics anyway as the main point is, when your UK photo licence reaches its renewal date you can only renew it if you are a UK resident. It is illegal for a French resident to renew a UK licence using a third party address even if they own the house at that address. It’s not rocket science. Very few people will still have a paper UK licence.

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(stella wood) #18

The best bit about exchanging the UK driving licence for a French one is…

it does NOT expire/need renewing at age 70 !!! you can go on driving until you drop…:heart_eyes:

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(Graham Lees) #19

Not only that, it is useful as an understood form of ID in France - shopping with a cheque for example and I have also used it as ID for hospital appointments as an alternate to carrying my passport… Please don’t forget that you MUST carry your DL with you (UK or French) when driving in France - no form HORT1 here to produce it later at a police station only a 90€ on the spot fine (and points off your 12 point allowance?)

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(Jonathan Badger) #20

My bad.