• 2024-04-16 08:00:44
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Can I Take My Lease Car Abroad?


Whether you’re planning a road trip through Europe or simply considering driving your leased car across the Channel for a weekend getaway, the question inevitably arises: Can I take my lease car abroad? As an expert in car leasing, we’ll explore what’s involved with taking your lease car abroad and how you can do so safely and legally.

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What paperwork is needed to drive my lease car abroad?

Usually, when you take a car abroad you will need to take your registration documents. Obviously, if you’re leasing a car, the finance company will retain the registration certificate. So, you will need alternate documents to prove you are allowed to have the vehicle abroad. Without the right documents, you could be detained at borders or by other authorities if you’re stopped while driving.

Specifically, you will need a VE103B certificate. This will an authorized document from the DVLA that will be proof that you have permission to take the car out of the UK. It will also act as the registration document and logbook, so you have all the information on-hand whilst you drive the car abroad.

How to get a VE103 certificate

You can get a VE103 certificate from the below organisations such as the RAC, AA, and BVRLA. You will need a letter of authority from the finance company/leasing company to prove you are allowed to take the vehicle abroad, and also include their details along with your own on the form. You will need to pay a fee of around £8. Alternatively, you can request your finance company/leasing company for the VE103 certificate, as they may already have some available, although you may still need to pay a fee.

You should leave at least 14 days for the certificate to be processed and sent out to you, so make sure to contact your finance company in good time ahead of your trip.

Will my leased car be insured when I drive it abroad?

Not necessarily – you’ll have to check your insurance policy to ensure you will be covered if you take your lease car abroad. If your current policy doesn’t already have cover for driving abroad, you will usually be able to add it on for an extra cost. Sometimes, policies might already include cover for driving abroad but only on a basic level, so you might want to add to it still.

You should also check your breakdown cover to see if it will extend internationally. If it doesn’t it would be beneficial to find additional cover while you’re abroad, so you’re protected in the case of a breakdown.

How long can I take a lease car abroad for?

The VE103 certificate will be valid for 12 months, but you should speak to your finance company/leasing company if you want to take your lease car abroad for an extended period. They may have their own rules about how long you can drive your car abroad for, which should be detailed in your contract. If you’re unsure, you can always speak to your provider directly.

What else do I need to take my lease car abroad?

When you go abroad, you’ll need your UK driving licence which should be valid and in-date. In some countries, excluding the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein, you may need an International Driving Permit, or IDP. There are three types of IDP and you can check in which countries you’ll need which type of IDP on the Government website. You’ll also need a UK sticker for your vehicle for driving in most countries abroad.

Some countries also have specific rules about what you need to carry in your car. For example, in France or Spain, you need to have a high-vis jacket, headlamp beam deflectors, and one or two warning triangles. If you’ll be driving through certain cities in France, you’ll also need a clean air sticker.

You should check the current rules and regulations online for the country you’ll be driving in to ensure you have everything you need to stay safe and avoid a fine.

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