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SanNico

Driving licenses and hire cars

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For those of you who still have UK licenses, I was refused a hire car last week from Europcar as they ran a credit check against my name using the address on the license.  My name didn't come up on Experian as I have no accounts or bills registered at the address.  They wouldn't even allow me to book in my wifes' name (US license) and pay to be the 2nd driver.  I had to get a very expensive cab from Stansted to Bedford and get a car from a different agency the next day.

I've never experienced this with any other agency but apparently it's a new thing.  They don't run checks on foreign licenses so tonight I'm going to start the application for an Italian license and pray that it arrives before I travel again.  Yes, I know I should have done it a long time ago and there aren't many benefits of holding on to it anymore.

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Getting an Italian licence is a good idea, when I got my one I had really left it too long, the man in the licence place said I should have done it after 3 years, fortunately I went with a woman in my road who can fix most things, I will from now on need to renew every three years , a lot of winking and laughing went on and the man shrugged his shoulders , I needed an eye test and a doctors certificate, they tested my eyes and he said I need new glasses as one eye is not as good as the other one, but it was a doddle really, like the Italian MOT, the worse experience of me was years ago getting an ID card the people in the office really did not want me to have one, why I really dont know  

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Driving licences are yet another grey area in Italian (and EU) bureaucracy it seems. If the UK licence has the EU flag on it then I see no reason why it should be necessary to change (while still in the EU of course).

I have heard varying rules from "official" sources - UK licence only valid for 1 year, only valid for 3 years and no need to change at all.

I changed mine to Italian when it expired a year ago, otherwise I probably wouldn't have bothered.

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The reason you need an Italian licence is if you get caught speeding how do they put points on a UK licence, Italy requires an eye test, this was on another forum, plus what if you run someone over on a UK licence, I waited nearly 10 years to change my licence as on another forum there was an end date maybe this has changed due to brexit being put back, I have all documents in Italian now as there is no way I am going back depends how lucky you are if you get pulled up by the police,  I got  pulled late at night when I first moved here they were very thorough, another thing is I get the impression maybe I am wrong that some Italians down here are not too keen on us leaving, went to a bakers yesterday and they big EU flags outside , they were all fascists in the war were I live go all misty eyed talking about Mussolini he built all the canals one is the boundary to my house   

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According to this article from the British government, you need to exchange your British license for an Italian one.

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/driving-after-brexit-for-uk-licence-holders-living-in-the-eu

I did this along time ago through a local office, it cost about 150€ at the time and took a couple of weeks to sort it out. I have since also renewed my license which was very easy. Another 50€ organised through a local driving school.

 

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