How to change a UK driving licence to a Spanish driving licence

How to change a UK driving licence to a Spanish driving licence

With the United Kingdom no longer a member of the EU, the holders of UK driving licences who are resident in Spain will find they will need to change them to a Spanish driving licence. The DGT website stipulates that the process to switch from a UK to Spanish licence must have been started before 31 December 2020. Applications submitted after this period will not be accepted. In addition, for those who like to leave things to the last minute be warned. Not only do you need to have submitted your application before 31 December it also needs to have been verified by the UK authorities and the application in order before 1st January 2021.

The Spanish authorities website confirms that if you have organised to transfer your UK driving licence to a Spanish licence before the end of 2020, the paperwork is in order and the UK authorities have verified the details then you have a maximum of six months to formalise the switch to a Spanish driving licence. If you do not organise to get your UK driving licence changed to a Spanish one then you my find that in time your UK licence becomes invalid and you have to sit the Spanish driving test.

Many people are using the services of a Gestoria or similar to help with this process. However if you want to do it yourself here is a step-by-step guide.

How to change a UK driving licence to a Spanish driving licence online

  1. Visit the Government of Spain website

    Go to the relevant page of the Government website to change a UK driving licence to a Spanish driving licence.

  2. Online option

    You will need a digital signature or Cla@ve PIN to go through the process online. If you do not have either and do not want to use this method then jump to step 5.

  3. Verify your identity

    You will need to verify yourself on the website using one of the methods above.

  4. Documentation to hand

    It will be necessary to have your driving licence to hand when you go through the online process. Once you have finished online then jump to step 7.

  5. Request by telephone

    You can request the change of driving licence by telephone. You will need to ring 060. The phone will be answered in Spanish. Later you will receive an appointment to formalise the change of driving licence. If you do not receive this within three days you can request a pre-booked appointment online. Once you have booked your appointment then review step 7 below to make sure you take all the paperwork with you. If you need help follow these steps as to how to book and appointment online with Trafico.

  6. In person at the Regional Traffic Office

    If you do not want to apply online or use the 060 phone number then you can apply in person. You will need to make a pre-booked appointment. Once you have your pre-booked appointment then review step 7 below to make sure you have all your paperwork on the day. If you need help follow these steps as to how to book and appointment online with Trafico.

  7. Formalisation at the Regional Traffic Office

    You will need to take the following documentation with you to the Region Traffic Office to finish the process:
    A completed Trámites de permisos de conducción del Reino Unido form (download a blank copy here), proof of identification such as your original current passport, proof of residency. When applying you can authorise the DGT to try and confirm your address in Spain, however, if they can’t you will need to provide proof such as a copy of the padrón. You will also need to take the original driving licence you intend to exchange. Do not forget a current photograph 32mm x 26mm in colour and proof you have paid the appropriate tax 28.30 euros.*

*The tax can be paid online if you have a digital signature. Alternatively, you can pay at any of the following financial institutions. To pay at the financial institutions you will need to complete and print off the modelo 791. You need to complete the section labelled Grupo II and the Tipo tasa 2.3. Change the “cantidad” to one and click the green button in the bottom left marked “actualiza totales”. Then print the form by clicking the black button near the bottom labelled “imprimir”. A new screen will open up where you will have to complete your personal details and select if you are going to pay from your bank account or in cash at one of the designated financial institutions.

MODELO 791 PAGE 2

If you pay before your appointment at the Regional Traffic office do not forget to print/take the receipt as proof of payment. It might be easier just to pay the fee at the Regional Traffic Office on the day of your appointment. If you do remember you can only pay by debit or credit card. They do not accept cash payments.

DGT advise to change your UK driving licence to a Spanish licence before 31 January 2020

How to change your UK driving licence to a Spanish driving licence

The United Kingdom will cease to be a member of the European Union if BREXIT takes place. At that moment, all agreements related to driving licences will no longer be valid for UK nationals.

The DGT (Dirreción General de Trafico) advises that you get your driving licence changed over before the 31 January 2020. Although your UK driving licence will remain valid for a further period of nine months in Spain, the conditions to transfer to a Spanish one after BREXIT are unknown.

If you are living in Spain and want to transfer from a UK licence to a Spanish licence, it might be better to do it now. There is a standard protocol in place to exchange a UK licence for a Spanish licence now. After BREXIT, the UK and European countries would have to sign a new agreement to exchange driving licences.

The process is fairly straightforward and there are many people that will help you with the paperwork. Shop around though to make sure you are not over charged. The process takes around a month. You have to hand in your old UK licence and the DGT give you a temporary document, which you can show to the Spanish police if you are stopped, until your new Spanish licence arrives.

The DGT post your new licence to your postal address in Spain, meaning there is no need to return to the Regional Traffic Office to collect it.

If your UK driving licence has not expired, as mentioned above, you can continue to use it for up to nine months after BREXIT but the conditions to exchange it for a Spanish licence could change.

If you want to know more about changing your driving licence then you can read our article UK or Spanish driving licence.

Or for more detailed information on how to change your driving licence form UK to Spanish then we have produced a step-by-step guide to changing your driving licence.

Need help? You can contact us and depending on your location we might have a professional contact in your area that can help with the process.

Foreign driving licence in Spain

You can use a foreign driving licence in Spain to drive a vehicle. However, regardless of the law where you obtained your driving licence, you must obey Spanish law when using your driving licence. For example, it is possible to pass your driving test aged 17 in the UK. You would not be able to use your UK licence in Spain until you were 18 because that is the minimum age in Spain by law.

All driving licences issued in the European Union and the European Economic Area are valid for driving in Spain. If you are living in Spain then please see below as there is a time limit in which the driving licence must be exchanged for a Spanish licence.

If you intend to live in Spain then you should start the process of changing your driving licence to a Spanish driving licence once you arrive.

Please note that whilst the Spanish Government might allow you to drive with a foreign driving licence insurance companies are not obliged to accept them. There is not a problem with a European driving licence but with some countries the number of Spanish insurance companies that will provided insurance could be reduced. In some cases none of the Spanish insurance companies will provide insurance.

Driving licence from outside EU

If you are from outside the EU and you have a qualifying driving licence then you must exchange it for a Spanish one within six months of arriving in Spain.

If there is an agreement between the country where your driving licence was issued and Spain then the process is relatively straight forward. It will mean you exchange your old licence for a Spanish driving licence. This process is done either by using the services of a Gestoria or by organising it yourself through the nearest regional Road Traffic Office.

If your driving licence is issued from a country where there is no agreement with Spain then you will not be able to exchange your licence. You will have to sit the Spanish driving test.

If you come from Japan, South Korea, Andorra, Switzerland or Monaco then the arrangements for you can be found here. Here is a summary in English.

Driving licence from an EU / EAA country

If your driving licence was issued by a country in the EU, or a country in the EEA then you have a period up to a maximum of two years to change your driving licence to a Spanish driving licence.

If your EU driving licence does not have an expiry date or perhaps it runs for longer than two years after you begin your residency in Spain, you still have to change it to a Spanish licence.

You change your driving licence to a Spanish driving licence through a Gesotria for a fee or you can undertake it yourself by collecting the appropriate paperwork, paying the fee and making an appointment with the Regional Traffic Office. Follow our step by step guide to change your EU driving licence to a Spanish driving licence here.

You cannot just go to your nearest Regional Road Traffic office. You must make a prior appointment.

How to change your EU driving licence to a Spanish driving licence

How to change your UK driving licence to a Spanish driving licence
How to change an EU driving licence to a Spanish driving licence yourself? If you need/want to change your driving licence from another EU country driving licence to a Spanish driving licence then you can either employ the services of a gestoría or you can do it yourself. Click this link if you want to change a UK driving licence to a Spanish driving licence.

How to change an EU driving licence to a Spanish licence

  1. Complete the application form

    You can download a copy of the application form to change from an EU to Spanish licence here.uk to spanish licence step by step 3

  2. Pay the appropriate Tax

    At the point of writing the tax is 28,30 euros. It can be paid by bank card at the Traffic department Office when you apply, by direct debit or in cash at a bank. You cannot pay by cash at the Traffic Office. The simplest way is to pay at the Traffic Office using your bank card.

  3. Identification

    You must provide proof of your identity. A valid identification card or Passport.

  4. Your Spanish residency document

    You will need to take your Spanish residency document. This could be the small green “Certificado de registro de Ciudadano de La Unión” card.

  5. Proof you are living in Spain

    You will need to prove you are living in Spain. This can be by way of a copy of the Padron. This shows you have registered at the Town Hall as a local resident. The document must be dated within the last three months to be accepted.

  6. Driving licence

    You will need to provide the original of your current driving licence.

  7. Photo

    A photo 32mmx26mm.

  8. Medical certificate

    You may need to also supply a medical certificate

    The medical certificate can be picked up and many different authorised locations. There are usually centres next to the Regional Traffic offices but there are also many centers throughout most towns which may be more convenient for you to use.
Once you have your paperwork ready you will need to make an appointment with the Regional Traffic Office. You cannot just turn up anymore. You need to arrange a prior appointment. Click the link to find out the process to make a prior appointment with the Regional Traffic office.