Problems exchanging Uk driving licence

(Ann Chassagnard) #21

I sent off my application to be exchanged for a French one back in November 2017.

Unfortunately, my UK licence expires next week and I have not yet received a new French one.

Anyone had the experience of driving in this situation?
Any advice?

I’ve spoken twice on the phone to the Maine-et-Loire prefecture in Nantes who now deal with this nationally.
Anyway, I can confirm that the department will not take any enquiries from the public.
However, you can ask the receptionist to check the system to confirm that your application has been received.

They told me this morning that there is currently a six month processing delay!

So - any advice on this one?
Has anyone driven in this situation before?

thanks in advance,

(stella wood) #22

Did you keep a copy (or send a copy) of your driving licence ?

Do you have anything in writing confirming your application for a French licence?

(Ann Chassagnard) #23

hello Stella,

I sent a copy of my licence, so I still have my original UK licence which expires next week.

I asked for a written confirmation of receipt of my application, which they will not provide.

The only thing I have is a copy of my application.
I’m actually pretty stressed. I rely on driving to collect my children etc.

(stella wood) #24

What you have is sufficient… keep it with you when you are driving the car. should you be stopped by the Gendarmes… or in whatever situation… offer the package.

by the way… in what way is your UK licence out of date… ?? UK licences are valuable as long as you are an EU citizen… or so I was led to believe…the lady at the Prefecture pooh-poohed the idea of a licence running out…

(Timothy Cole) #25

Unfortunately if your licence has expired then you cannot drive.

I know that there is a backlog of applications across the ANTS site so maybe yours is one of those stick in the system.

(stella wood) #26

Tim… what do you mean by “expired” ?? My UK licence (paper one) has/had no expiry date.

(Dominic Best) #27

Photocard licences have an expiry date. It’s to do with the photo.

(Tony Dix) #28

Posted my wife’s off in mid November, Tried every way I could think of to get a response from them, but nothing. Ended up renewing uk licence on line, it took 3 days to receive it in the uk. Fingers crossed we will get a french one sometime this year. When I exchanged my several years ago it too less then a month

(stella wood) #29

Yes, the photo “expires” :wink: … as we all get older… but the paper licences did not carry a photo…

The lady in the Prefecture saw no valid reason for us to change the licence to a French one, (even though it bore the old UK address). She was very kind, but had a large queue and said if our original UK paper licence had not been revoked through a misdemeanour, as French Residents we were all OK to continue with it. …and goodbye… :hugs:

12 years later… I did do the exchange, voluntarily, and now stuck with a ghastly photo on my French paper one… and waiting to re-do with a more flattering one, when the time comes.

(Ann Chassagnard) #30

I have a UK photocard licence.

The photocard licence is valid for 10 years.

There is also a UK paper counterpart licence - I’m not sure what this is for, and it’s true, it doesn’t seem to have an expiry date on it.

(Tony - you were lucky to be able to do that. Unfortunately I can’t renew in the UK otherwise I’d have done that in the meantime. )

(Timothy Cole) #31

@anna I think if you’ve still got the paper bit that ought to suffice if you were stopped by the gendarmes especially as you can also show you’ve applied to change.

(Dominic Best) #32

A couple if years ago the UK system changed and the paper counterpart now has no validity. I think the advice from the DVLA was to throw it in the bin.

(anon71231711) #33

Oh really, that’s interesting, do they not issue the paper part any more? Silly question but where do they record your naughty points, is that all online now?

(Dominic Best) #34

It’s all online now. The biggest hassle for British licence holders travelling abroad is that they now have to apply for a confidential code to give to car hire firms that ‘need’ to see their driving record. I’ve never been asked for anything when I’ve hired vans from my local SuperU.

(anon71231711) #35

Thanks for explaining, I didn’t realise any of that. It’s getting to be a full time job keeping up with changes these days :roll_eyes:

(Mark Robbins) #36

I believe the code is only necessary when hiring in the UK.

(Timothy Cole) #37

According to various sites it may also be needed to hire a car outside the UK.

(Dominic Best) #38

Possibly but when I first read about it it was in the context of people being aware before they flew off to foreign parts.

(Timothy Cole) #39

At least they’ve changed the validity of the code from 72 hours to 21 days.

(Georgina taylor) #40

This topic just reminded me to check my Irish licence…it expires in April, many thanks for the website link and other advice everybody.