Extending the validity period of Ukrainian driving licences in Northern Ireland

Consultation opened on 06 September 2023. Closing date 03 October 2023.


This consultation is seeking your views on a proposal to extend the period of time during which the holder of a Ukrainian category B driving licence is able to drive in Northern Ireland. The proposed change would cover all classes of small vehicles authorised by that licence.  It would extend the period from 12 to 36 months to match the length of their stay under one of the approved visa schemes.


Consultation description

Consultation now closed.

A synopsis of responses is now available.

The UK has been playing a leading role in supporting Ukraine and until the conflict with Russia is resolved, will continue to do so.

To help make the transition to life in the UK as seamless as possible for those arriving under such difficult circumstances, the UK Government has established three official schemes for Ukrainian refugees to come to the UK. In Northern Ireland (NI) the support and delivery of key services is co-ordinated by The Executive Office (TEO), working in partnership with the UK Government, other Devolved Administrations, NI Executive Departments, Statutory Agencies and the voluntary and community sector.

One area where Ukrainian arrivals have to adapt is in motoring. The continued ability of Ukrainians to get around is vital to their integration, socialising, accessing healthcare and working during their time here.

Given the exceptional and temporary nature of Ukrainians’ residence in NI under the Ukrainian Visa Schemes, we are proposing to extend the time during which the holder of a Ukrainian driving licence is able to drive cars in NI on that licence after becoming resident here, beyond the current 12-month period to 3 years (36 months).  This matches the visa length they have been given under the three official schemes (the Family, Sponsor and Extension visa schemes).

This will improve Ukrainian licence holders’ ability to get around and adapt to living in NI as they will not need to exchange their licence or take a further test during the extended period in order to continue driving a manual car including any such vehicle, they brought with them to NI.

We are not seeking to allow them to drive on their Ukrainian licence indefinitely and the extension would only apply to category B (car) licence holders. Licences in other categories are not being considered at this time.

This consultation seeks views on the proposed extension and provides the opportunity for other comments.

The consultation document and associated documents can also be made available in alternative formats on request. Please contact: drivingpolicybranch@infrastructure-ni.gov.uk  

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