Last updated: 12th July 2021
Just as we predicted last year, the Spanish government has finally opened negotiations with the UK with a view to reaching an agreement for both countries to continue accepting each other’s driving licences as was the case before Brexit.
Meanwhile, while those negotiations continue, Spain has now announced an extension for the acceptance of UK licences in Spain until 31st October 2021 (for any UK national who filed an application for Residency in Spain BEFORE 31st December 2020). Then if those negotiations are successful, it is anticipated that Spain and UK will accept each other’s licences permanently, just as they used to do before Brexit.
Meanwhile, UK tourists visiting Spain can continue to use their UK licences to drive here (e.g. a hire car, or your own vehicle) for up to 6 months per year, with no additional restrictions (i.e. no international permits etc). However, using your own UK registered vehicle in Spain may trigger additional requirements, such as a ‘green card’ (check with your insurance company for details).
It should be noted that the EU has no say or veto over the above rules or negotiations. Such reciprocal licence agreements have always been, and continue to be, a private diplomatic matter between the countries concerned. An example of this is the agreement Spain has with the USA for reciprocal driving licence use.