Driving abroad

Green Cards

June 2021

A Green Card is an internationally-recognised document that provides evidence to law enforcement agencies that a vehicle has valid motor insurance. Its main objectives were to facilitate the movement of vehicles across international borders and to protect victims of accidents that involved foreign residents from being disadvantaged. Since it was introduced on 1st January 2009, it has been a legal requirement for all UK-registered vehicles to carry a Green Card when abroad.

However, since Brexit, this has caused some serious issues in Northern Ireland as residents are required to carry Green Cards to enter the Republic of Ireland. With an estimated 43 million annual trips across the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland every year, clearly this system is no longer sustainable.  

So, after a long campaign by the Association of British Insurers, the European Union (EU) has confirmed that the UK will be allowed to participate in the Green Card Free Circulation Zone (GCFCA) which consists of 30 European Economic Area (EEA) countries as well as Andorra, Bosnia, Serbia and Switzerland. Although the date that this will come into effect has not been confirmed, when it does, UK drivers will no longer be legally required to carry a Green Card as proof of motor insurance.

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