Driving cross-border and the Green Card

If you intend to drive to the Republic of Ireland after Brexit, it is important that you understand what is required of you.

Travelling cross-border by car after Brexit

If you hold a UK or NI driving licence you should not need an International Driving Permit (IDP) to drive in the Republic of Ireland after Brexit.

Motor insurance (Green Card)

If there is a no-deal Brexit, from 12 April 2019  NI drivers will need to carry a Green Card when travelling to the Republic of Ireland. It would be illegal to travel without this proof of insurance.

Green Cards are an international certificate of insurance issued by insurance providers in the UK, guaranteeing that the driver has the necessary third-party motor insurance cover for driving in the country being travelled to.

They are not cards in the strict sense – they are paper documents which, under current international rules, should be printed on green paper.

To get a Green Card, you should contact your insurance provider. As this may take anything from 15 days to one month to process you should factor in that time before travelling. Any charge for a Green Card will depend on your insurer.

Republic of Ireland motorists driving in the UK will be able to show proof of motor insurance, in accordance with UK law, using either a Green Card or through legally valid insurance documents.   The proof of insurance will need to show that the insurance is valid for driving in the UK specifically, that is not just in Ireland and the EU.

Hiring a car

If a car is rented in Northern Ireland for use in the the Republic of Ireland, a Green Card would be needed.

Towing a trailer

A separate Green Card may be needed if you intend to tow a trailer. Your insurance provider will be able to advise you about this.

Before you go

Make sure:

  • the details on your driving licence are up-to-date
  • you take your driving licence with you
  • you replace your driving licence if it's lost, stolen, defaced or destroyed

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