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Martyn Raybould

Driving or towing abroad? You will need 1 or 2 Green cards!

The UK is no longer officially part of the European Union! So, life will change in many ways including driving and travelling to European countries for holidays. If like me you love to take a road trip into Europe, either in your CAR towing a CARAVAN/TRAILER or in a MOTORHOME/CAMPERVAN, you will need 1 or 2 Green Cards.

A Green Card (Also known as an ‘International Motor Insurance Certificate’ (‘IMIC’), to drive abroad is to evidence you have insurance cover in the event of an accident. The card may be required to leave or enter an EU country, but it will absolutely be needed if you have an accident. And, no doubt there are likely to be fines if you have an accident and do not have evidence of insurance with a Green Card at the time! (For clarity: A Green Card is proof of insurance under a UK driving licence, this is different from an ‘International Driving Permit’. The Post Office website is a good place to explore an IDP).

Will having your insurance documents with you at the time be enough?

On the DVLA web page https://www.gov.uk/vehicle-insurance/driving-abroad there is no mention that just having your papers will be sufficient. This is most likely because the policeman at the time may not be able to read English, hence YOU WILL NEED THE GREEN CARD as proof of cover.

How do I get a Green Card?

The good news is that this should be easy. Give yourself enough time (Possibly up to 6 weeks) to apply for the card. To give readers an idea, I applied for my own Green Card today from my insurer LV. For Clarity: The document you receive may not be green or even a card!). To read the .Gov information go to www.gov.uk/vehicle-insurance/driving-abroad or visit the MIB and Zurich Insurance advice page links at the bottom of this piece.

  1. Go to your insurer’s website and choose ‘Car Insurance’
  2. At the top navigation bar will be a search bar (See example below). Click in the box and type ‘Green Card’ and search
  3. This should bring up a page to allow you to apply for one, ideally have your insurance policy reference to hand for BOTH a Car or Caravan/ Trailer or your Motorhome/Campervan. (If you dont have this available, your insurer can usually find you if you complete all other fields
  4. In my own case, LV confirmed they would send me a card in the 1st class post the next day

For more information on the Green card, there is more information on the Motor Insurer’s Bureau website www.zurich.co.uk/insurance/greencard website, we also recommend calling or visiting your own insurer or broker.

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