Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

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john the baptist
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Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby john the baptist » Tue Oct 23, 2018 8:22 pm

Hi we have avoided it for years but my wife and my UK driving licence expire in December, as all of us when we get older we have fewer and fewer UK connections and dont have the old address where i used to live.

I've had a car A1 and A motorbike licence for 35 years same as my wife (except she does not have the motorbike). I believe it is now compulsory to have medical tests as well.

Can some one please tell me the procedure, do we need to go to traffico first to get forms and then do a medical test??? how much does the test cost and is it physical???? what happens when your hand over you UK licence??? what happens if we get stopped with nothing to show???

Also how long will it take?? I assume that the Spanish traffic authority will be contacting the DVLA in Swansea to ensure that they are real and possibly sending it to them.

I also assume the Spanish one is a photo card licence so do we take physical passport style photos or it digital these days???

Please can I have any advice as possible as we have left it late and im getting worried. Ive also heard horror story that for bikers the licences come back WITHOUT A1 A2 and A categories which mean no motorbikes.

As always any advice will be gratefully appreciated.

John

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby dxf » Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:37 pm

Hola

The various medical centres can usually change your licence but if you go to trafico then they will tell you what you need. A photo is usually needed and if you don't have a photocard licence then you will need a photo as well as a medical.

My last change of driving licence (Spanish since 2004) was done at a medical centre next door almost to Trafico ad the medical centre took the new photo - included in the price.

You will be issued with a piece of paper when they take your old licence away so if you do get stopped it shouldn't be a problem

BUT check your new licence is correct when you get it - mine wasn't (yes they removed the full motorbike licence) but re-instated it when I complained

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby john the baptist » Wed Oct 24, 2018 6:50 am

thanks Dave, I assume you went to chiclana where you live. Can you remember how much it cost and how long it took to do???? definitely
need my A Bike licence i ride everyday to work and on weekends to various bike meetings.

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby dxf » Wed Oct 24, 2018 7:34 am

Hola

From memory I made the application and went back about three weeks later to get a pink substitute; the actual licence was about five weeks after that - however that was 2004 and things have changed. I got a renewal last year and I thing it was around 30€ for the clinic near Trafico to do everything - a new licence arrived within three weeks.

At no time did Trafico leave me without a piece of paper that gave me permission to drive

Davexf

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby peteroldracer » Wed Oct 24, 2018 8:33 am

“. I believe it is now compulsory to have medical tests as well.”
In order to continue driving in Spain on your UK licence it has always been the law that this is OK while it is valid, but you must comply with the same laws as the Spanish and have a medical and coordination certificate.
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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby gerryh » Wed Oct 24, 2018 9:42 am

dxf wrote:...

My last change of driving licence (Spanish since 2004) was done at a medical centre next door almost to Trafico ad the medical centre took the new photo - included in the price.



Davexf

I'm confused.
Doesn't what you say only apply to renewing a Spanish driving licence?
The OP asked about changing a UK licence for a Spanish licence.
When I did mind it had to be done at Trafico.
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Gerry
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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby elusive » Wed Oct 24, 2018 10:02 am

Changed uk to spanish in 2014. At that time because i was exchanging it and not renewing no medical was needed but this seems to vary depending on which traffico you use. Made an appointment took all my docs and copies of licence residencia padron passport basically everything as you know if you dont they will ask for the one you dont bring. You fill a form out there and at that point they tell you if you need a medical. If you uk photo licence is running out ie the photo has expired but not the actual licence then you will need a medical.only exchanged sometimes dont require one. Then they check with dvla to confirm your licence is legit.after that they contact you and you go back with your medical and then you hand over your uk licence and they give you a piece of paper to cover you for three months incase the police stop you. Within weeks your new licence should arrive in the post. I guess each area varies but this gives you an idea.Or you could pay a gestor

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby El Cid » Wed Oct 24, 2018 11:18 am

Officially (see DGT site) you do not need a medical to exchange a licence. The logic behind that is that if you hold a valid licence, then any medical tests would have been done in the country of issue, so would still be valid.

However, as we all know, the UK does no require a medical so that is a bit of an anomaly.

As Elusive says, ultimately it will depend on the local Trafico office and on whoever is manning the desk. If you are lucky, you won't need one.

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby peteroldracer » Wed Oct 24, 2018 11:52 am

“If you are lucky, you won't need one.”
Except that if you are not fit to drive by the fairly low standards tested, you could make some other people very unlucky when you have a crash with them.
If I was unfit by Spanish standards I would not want to be driving, but I think this possibility is the main reason why people resist having the test. It certainly is one system that should be brought into UK law, rather than the ludicrous self-assessment at 70+, or the oft-threatened arbitrary age bar? My brother who lives in the UK is virtually deaf, reads by peering at things from a few inches and has the reactions of a drunken slug, but insists that he plans to buy a new car and renew his licence (at 71).
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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby El Cid » Wed Oct 24, 2018 12:14 pm

Fair comment. I think another factor is that nobody has had a test in the UK and are worried that it will be a full medical. As we all know, apart from the eye test, it is a waste of time. You would need to be almost paralysed to fail the coordination test as as far as the medical questions are concerned, you can say what you like.

I agree about the UK. The only people that get a medical are, I think, HGV drivers. At least they have introduced road side eyesight tests, but I wonder how many of those will get carried out, apart from after an accident, by which time the damage is done.

Sid

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby Nicknjh23 » Thu Oct 25, 2018 7:28 am

Just going through the process. Medical was how much do you weigh. Blood pressure test. Eye test. Then a quick computer game test , keeping the ball on two roads at the same time. Pretty simple. A few questions like alchohol consumption. Smoking etc. Photo taken and a certificate issued to be handed in with the license to be changed. Medical cost €45. Torrox

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby Lyric » Thu Oct 25, 2018 8:52 am

Was that the place on The Costa opposite Cajamar ?

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby kexon » Thu Oct 25, 2018 7:19 pm

After my wonderful experience with residencia I now move on to the driving license.
I keep looking at the www.dgt.es website, I have even google translated the page but I cannot find the link to download the application form to change licenses, I know its there somewhere as they keep telling me it is.
Any guidance would be appreciated.
Am I right in thinking that current UK licenses will not be valid after March 2019 or what ever exit date they settle on.

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby john the baptist » Thu Oct 25, 2018 7:51 pm

HI I went on the dgt.es web site as I actually tried to speak to someone at my local trafico office via the phone. I got an automated response and was told that everything needs an appointments which you can make online. The site was a joke, there is a library and media centre and loads of pdf to download but these are laws and statistics.

Im a bit surprised on how expensive the medical is as we need two. i cant imagine its too difficult also I assume that trafico are going to want an hefty administration fee as well.

Still it has to be done, also on various occasions if you are entering Gibraltar and the Guardia are having a bad day or have received political instructions from Madrid, they will impound cars and issue fines. I got €500 for having a UK licence (which they said they did not recognize) as I had been resident in spain for over 6 month and had not exchanged the licence. The police and normal guardia in la linea said it was ridiculous and trafico were scratching their heads on why it was issued as it was in a category of a licence from a non recognised country (i cant think of one to be honest).
But I paid because in theory they are right we all know the 6 month rule and personally all the uk reg cars without MOT down here I dont agree with. The only good news if you pay with 2 weeks you get a 50% discount.

BTW - insurance companies local police traffic police and everyone have never given me any problems with a uk licence.

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby elusive » Thu Oct 25, 2018 8:18 pm

You can get the forms to change at traffico itself although when i went to malaga the other week they had all been moved from they used to be with no obvious info saying where they were so i just got my ticket and went to the window when called. They printed off the ones i needed there and then instead.

Kexon. Nothing offical has been said about what will happen re licences after brexit as no deal has been anounced yet. If a deal is done i would think the law would just stay as it is now interms of when a licence has to be changed to a spanish one. Who knows. Personally i would advise people to change before inorder to save possible issues especially as i think you said you have been here many years already? your photo on your licence could already be invalid

Theres no 6 month rule re uk licence john if thats what you mean??.if the fine was obviously wrong you should have contested it

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby El Cid » Thu Oct 25, 2018 8:26 pm

I think this the basic form you need

https://sede.dgt.gob.es/Galerias/tramit ... .03-ES.pdf

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby peteroldracer » Thu Oct 25, 2018 8:33 pm

John wrote “Im a bit surprised on how expensive the medical is as we need two.”
Given that there is a private appointment with a doctor, plus the equipment, plus the administration costs to cover, and that they are not doing it as a charity, the fees seem cheap as chips!
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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby El Cid » Thu Oct 25, 2018 8:52 pm

I agree. If you have a private appointment with a doctor it will cost up to €80.

Sid

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby Wicksey » Fri Oct 26, 2018 9:12 am

Nicknjh23 wrote:Just going through the process. Medical was how much do you weigh. Blood pressure test. Eye test. Then a quick computer game test , keeping the ball on two roads at the same time. Pretty simple. A few questions like alchohol consumption. Smoking etc. Photo taken and a certificate issued to be handed in with the license to be changed. Medical cost €45. Torrox


Sounds the easiest option rather than do battle with Trafico. Are you just changing a licence (ie your UK one hasn't expired yet)?

Having been always told that as it is an EU licence I don't need to change my UK one as it is valid here, I haven't done so yet but if Brexit ever happens, then it may be a different matter.

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Re: Exchanging UK driving Licence for a Spanish one

Postby Nicknjh23 » Fri Oct 26, 2018 9:15 am

Just changing for a new one. It’s still valid. It’s not quite that simple. Now my license is being taken to traffico by my abagado. Then wait three weeks for the new license


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