GB Stickers and Number Plates No Longer Valid When Driving Abroad

30th Sep 2021

Car Traffic With GB Sticker

As part of Brexit and the UK government's plans to further use 'UK' as its international signifier, old 'GB' stickers or number plates will no longer be valid when driving abroad.

Under the new regulations, drivers attempting to use a GB sticker when driving outside of the UK may be issued with varying penalties.

UK citizens are now beginning to travel abroad as the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic continues, making it as important as ever to understand the new rules when driving abroad.

Drivers taking their vehicle outside of the UK should remove or cover up the previously accepted 'GB' identifier, and substitute it with a 'UK' replacement.

Anybody travelling abroad with a number plate that has any of the following must display the new UK identifier on their vehicle:

  • A GB identifier with the Union flag
  • A Euro symbol
  • The national flag of England, Scotland or Wales
  • Solely numbers and letters with no flag or identifier

Alternatively, having a number plate with the UK identifier and Union flag (also known as the Union Jack) means you don't need to display a UK sticker on the rear of your car within certain countries.

The UK government released new guidelines on the 28th September, meaning the new rules are now in place. However, there are some exemptions to the rules, so it's worth clarifying before attempting to drive abroad. For example, if you plan to drive in Spain, Cyprus or Malta you'll need to display a UK sticker regardless of whether you have a UK number plate identifier.

The penalties for not abiding to the rule are expected to vary, but could include refusal of entry to certain countries if not displaying the correct identifier.