DVLA advice to drivers as UK licence paper counterpart is abolished

Yesterday, 8 June, the paper counterpart to UK photocard driving licences was abolished (though not those issued by DVA in Northern Ireland.), and the DVLA has issued advice to drivers who may be hiring cars in Europe. The DVLA says that drivers should destroy the paper counterpart of photocard licences because the details kept on it, or any points imposed, will henceforth be administered electronically. As far as hiring cars in Europe is conerned, the DVLA says:

From 8 June 2015, you may wish to check with the hire company what they need to see when you hire a vehicle. If you’re asked for evidence of what vehicles you can drive or confirmation of any penalty points, you can request a unique code from GOV.UK which allows you to share your driving licence details or you can download a summary of your driving licence record. The code lasts for up to 72 hours and will allow the hire companies to make any necessary checks.

If you cannot generate a code online then you can call 0300 083 0013 and DVLA will provide you with a code.

Alternatively, you can call DVLA on 0300 790 6801 and leave permission for your driving record to be checked verbally by a nominated hire company. This also applies if you have a paper licence that was issued before 1998.

Not all vehicle hire companies will ask for this information and we advise that you check with your hire company.

The DVLA has produced this infographic for those hiring cars:

DVLA infographic


  1. Dear Janet

    We live in Tenerife and have order a rental car from Hertz, we understand if we had UK Driving licence we may need a code if hiring a car abroad. My partner has a Spanish Licence do we need a code to rent the car in England

    Thanks in advance for any help you can offer

    1. Author

      You don’t need a code if you have a Spanish licence because the information is already electronically codified here. The code is only for those with UK licences where the DVLA no longer records it on the paper counterpart.

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