Can I take a lease car abroad?

  • Can I take my lease car abroad? 
  • Driving a lease car in Europe 
  • Where do I get a VE103 and VE103B certificate? 
  • What else do I need to take my lease car abroad?
  • Vehicle checklist

Can I take my lease car abroad? 

Planning a trip abroad? Need to drive outside of the UK? There are a few things you need to know. You may wonder and think, “Can I take my lease car abroad?”. While this is allowed it is at the discretion of your finance house. Not only that, there is some paperwork that will be required to sign before you go too, so it’s worth getting a head start around two weeks before your departure date.

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Driving a lease car in Europe 

When taking a UK leased vehicle to Europe you will need to obtain the appropriate paperwork to do so. This is a VE103 certificate and a VE103B certificate. A VE103B certificate is designed to replace the original vehicle documentation when travelling abroad. A lease car driver does not possess the vehicle logbook and so must obtain a VE103B certificate before travelling to prove they have permission to drive the vehicle. The VE103 certificate is designed to provide proof that they can take the vehicle outside of the UK. The driver must carry both the VE103 and the VE103B certificate with them throughout their journey. 

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Where do I get a VE103 and VE103B certificate? 

To secure your VE103B certificate you should contact your finance company at least 14 days before travelling to request the certificate. The certificate will last for 12 months from the date of issue. In addition to this, it’s necessary to speak to your lease company for written permission to prove you are allowed to take your vehicle out of the UK. Once you’ve got this you can then apply for a VE103 certificate to prove you are allowed to use the vehicle while driving abroad. These can be obtained from: 

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

This depends on the EU Country you are travelling to. Below is a list of essential items you’ll need for each Country. You should also consider obtaining European breakdown cover. You can compare the European breakdown cover here

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Ireland: 

  • A valid UK driving licence 
  • VE105B 
  • Insurance certificate 

France: 

  • Valid UK driving licence 
  • Proof of ID (e.g passport) 
  • VE105B 
  • Insurance certificate 
  • UK Sticker or UK identifier within the number plate 
  • “Clean Air” stickers if travelling to cities 
  • Headlamp beam deflectors 
  • Warning triangle 
  • Reflective jacket – must be within reach of the driver without leaving the vehicle 
  • Breathalyser/alcohol test 
  • Spare bulb kit 
  • Snow chains 

Spain:

  • Valid UK driving licence 
  • Proof of ID (e.g passport) 
  • VE105B 
  • UK Sticker 
  • Insurance certificate 
  • Reflective jackets 
  • Headlamp beam deflectors 
  • Warning triangle x2 

Portugal: 

  • Valid UK driving licence 
  • Proof of ID (e.g passport) 
  • VE105B 
  • UK Sticker or UK identifier within the number plate 
  • Insurance certificate 
  • Reflective jackets 
  • Headlamp beam deflectors 
  • Warning triangle 

Netherlands: 

  • Valid UK driving licence 
  • Proof of ID (e.g passport) 
  • VE105B 
  • UK Sticker 
  • Insurance certificate 
  • Reflective jackets 
  • Warning triangle 
  • Headlamp beam deflectors 

Belgium: 

  • Valid UK driving licence 
  • Proof of ID (e.g passport) 
  • VE105B 
  • UK Sticker or UK identifier within the number plate 
  • Insurance certificate 
  • Headlamp beam deflectors 
  • Warning triangle 
  • Reflective jacket 
  • Fire extinguisher 
  • First-aid kit 

Luxembourg: 

  • Valid UK driving licence (you must be 18 or over) 
  • VE105B 
  • UK Sticker or UK identifier within the number plate 
  • Insurance certificate 
  • Headlamp converters 
  • Warning triangle 

Germany: 

  • Valid UK driving licence 
  • Proof of ID (e.g passport) 
  • VE105B 
  • UK Sticker or UK identifier within the number plate 
  • Insurance certificate 
  • Reflective jackets 
  • First-aid kit 
  • Winter tyres 
  • Headlamp beam deflectors 
  • Warning triangle 

Switzerland: 

  • Valid UK driving licence 
  • Proof of ID (e.g passport) 
  • VE105B 
  • UK Sticker or UK identifier within the number plate 
  • Insurance certificate 
  • Headlamp converters 
  • Warning triangle – must be within reach of the driver without leaving the vehicle 
  • Spare driving glasses or contact lenses (if you wear them) 
  • Snow chains in poor weather 
  • Motorway sticker if driving on a motorway 

Italy: 

  • Valid UK driving licence 
  • Proof of ID (e.g passport) 
  • VE105B 
  • UK Sticker or UK identifier within the number plate 
  • Insurance certificate 
  • Headlamp beam deflectors 
  • Warning triangle 
  • Reflective jacket 

Austria: 

  • Valid UK driving licence 
  • Proof of ID (e.g passport) 
  • VE105B 
  • UK Sticker or UK identifier within the number plate 
  • Insurance certificate 
  • Headlamp beam deflectors 
  • Warning triangle 
  • Reflective jacket 
  • First Aid kit (in a strong, dirt-proof box) 

Czech Republic:

  • Valid UK driving licence (you must be 18 or over) 
  • VE105B 
  • UK Sticker or UK identifier within the number plate 
  • Insurance certificate 
  • Headlamp converters 
  • Warning triangle 

All that’s left now is to make sure you’ve completed some essential vehicle checks before you get on your way. Use this checklist to ensure your car is ready for your trip. 

Vehicle checklist 

  1. The radiator fluid/coolant. New car radiators tend to have overflow bottles displaying a minimum and maximum water level. Top it up before you leave with a 50/50 mix of water and antifreeze. 
  1. Spare tyre. Even though 50% of new cars don’t come equipped with a spare wheel. If you do have one, make sure it is in good order before you leave. If you don’t ensure you have a complete tyre repair kit with you when you travel. 
  1. Tyre pressures. Before a long journey be sure to check your tyre pressures. If they’re wrong you’ll spend out more on fuel and may suffer poor handling. Also, check the tyre tread. If your tyre does not meet the minimum requirements then you could end up with a £2,500 fine and 3 points on your licence. The minimum legal tread depth is 1.6mm across the central ¾ of the tyre, all the way around. 
  1. Engine oil. Without enough oil, your car can overheat and stop working altogether. 
  1. Check your lights and make sure you have spare bulbs 
  1. Screenwash. Dusty roads and bright sun make for poor visibility, be sure to top up your screen wash bottle. 

And there you have it, now you are more than ready to begin your travels abroad with your leased vehicle. If you have a trip coming up and you are planning to take your car, remember to begin sorting your paperwork around 14 days before your departure date.  

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