What is the problem: The DVLA axed the paper counterpart section of your driving licence on June 8.
But how does this affect collecting my holiday hire car: The paper counterpart contains information on penalty points and other traffic offences that hire companies need to check before supplying you with a car. This will now be held on the DVLA’s database and need to checked online.
So how will hire car companies check my record: Travellers will need to log on to the DVLA’s website the day before they travel, enter their driving licence and national insurance number to obtain an access code that’ll allow a car hire company to check their details via the internet when they arrive.
How long does the code last for: Originally, the code was valid for just 72 hours, but this was extended to 21 days after complaints that the short validity was causing too many problems for people hiring cars for just part of their holiday. It was also causing periods of high demand on the DVLA’s website and causing it to crash,
Is there any other way: Yes. If you have access to a computer you can download your driver ‘record’ on a PDF document, print it out and show it to the hire car company. However, some motoring organisations are concerned firms could be reluctant to accept this.
What if I forget to get an access code or to download a PDF: Arrive at the hire car desk without any of the above and the operator could be forced to ring the DVLA’s premium rate helpline, which costs up to £3 a minute. Or they could just cancel your booking because you haven’t adhered to terms and conditions.
I have the old-style paper licence – is that okay: Yes, old-style paper licences are still legal and providing they are up to date, should be accepted at the hire desk as proof of your driving record. However, if you need to update and details – such as address or endorsements – you will have it replaced with a new-style photocard (and not paper counterpart, of course).
Where can I get the hire car code: Simply use the following methods
Online: Logon to the DVLA website, enter your driving licence number and National Insurance number. You will receive a code to give to the hire car company when you collect your car. Don’t lose this code.
Log on to the website here
Print: Logon to the DVLA site, as above, then download and print a copy of your record to give to the hire car company.
By post: If you don’t have internet access, you can write to the DVLA in advance of your trip and request a print-out of your licence record for the hire car company. Please allow plenty of time for this request to be processed.
Send the following information to the address below:
- your full name and address
- your driver licence number (or your date of birth if you don’t know your driver number)
Driver Licence Validation Service
Don’t forget: Take your driving licence and National Insurance number with you – just in case you lose your access code or have a change of plans and decide to hire a car.