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Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

Old Oct 22nd 2020, 9:43 am
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Default Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

Hello All,
In theory, British people should exchange their driving licence for a Spanish one before the year-end.
The problem is (for me at least) it is practically impossible to get an appointment to exchange the licence!
I swear I tried at least once a week, but more likely once a day to try to get an appoinment with Girona or Barcelona since May 2020!
I've also called DTG directly and they told me there is nothing I can do. I've tried to call the direct number od Girona and they do not pick up the phone.
In theory, is it mandatory to change it, but it's impossible!
Have any of you succeded? Any tip?
Thanks!
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 9:51 am
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

Originally Posted by speedwago View Post
Hello All,
In theory, British people should exchange their driving licence for a Spanish one before the year-end.
The problem is (for me at least) it is practically impossible to get an appointment to exchange the licence!
I swear I tried at least once a week, but more likely once a day to try to get an appoinment with Girona or Barcelona since May 2020!
I've also called DTG directly and they told me there is nothing I can do. I've tried to call the direct number od Girona and they do not pick up the phone.
In theory, is it mandatory to change it, but it's impossible!
Have any of you succeded? Any tip?
Thanks!

Simply ask a gestor to do it for you - they (sometimes) have better access to appointments
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 9:54 am
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

A Gestor? What is that?
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 11:16 am
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

A gestor (or gestoría) is a private professional agent who specialises in dealing with Spanish administrative bureaucracy on behalf of a client. They provide services on a wide variety of bureaucratic procedures (e.g. tax, accountancy, vehicle registrations, residency and nationality applications etc.), and although there is often no equivalent to this role in many other countries, instructing a gestor is common practice in Spain.

https://www.gov.uk/government/public...tores-in-spain
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 11:22 am
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

Originally Posted by spainrico View Post
A gestor (or gestoría) is a private professional agent who specialises in dealing with Spanish administrative bureaucracy on behalf of a client. They provide services on a wide variety of bureaucratic procedures (e.g. tax, accountancy, vehicle registrations, residency and nationality applications etc.), and although there is often no equivalent to this role in many other countries, instructing a gestor is common practice in Spain.

https://www.gov.uk/government/public...tores-in-spain

For the OP - a Gestor is the person whilst a Gestoria is the business.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 12:02 pm
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

Oh wow, I didn't know you could just pay someone for apply for a new document.
I'll try to call a few of them today. Thanks!
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 12:30 pm
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

I used an Abogado. They did it all for me. I gave them my UK license they filled in the forms. I got a temporary license within 14 days and Spanish license within a month by post.

That was several years ago. It might be a little more difficult / take longer now?
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 12:50 pm
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

I managed to get an appointment at Barcelona DGT on 29th September, but I made that appointment without having my new TIE.
I just had to guess when my TIE would be ready and made an appointmnet based on that. Luckily my TIE was ready fairly quickly.

Just waiting for my licence to come through now.

But as someone said earlier in this post...get a Gestor to do it. They have ways of getting an appointment that we don´t. I think they "block book" them in advance which seems unfair really.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 12:52 pm
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

I had a Medical beforehand. I´m not sure it was necessary but I erred on the side of caution. I think it depends on whereabouts in Spain you go to exchange your licence.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 12:58 pm
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

Recent update from the British Consulate:

"As you know one of the key actions for UK Nationals living in Spain is to exchange their UK driving licence for a Spanish one. However, recently it has been extremely difficult to get an appointment.

We have a key update from the DGT: The DGT is aware that UK and other licence holders are facing problems in obtaining an appointment. They will soon introduce a new process to streamline the current exchange process until the end of the year. UK licence holders will be asked to complete a form with the details the DGT needs in order to verify the driving licence with the UK authorities. This form must be submitted to the DGT by 25 December at the very latest. Once a person has presented their form, they will need to obtain an appointment with DGT to finalise the exchange process. However, as long as the form was submitted by the date above, and the licence verified by the DGT before the end of the year, the appointment to complete the process can be after 1 January 2021. We will share information on the new process as soon as we have it."

As a secondary measure I would suggest those potentially affected apply to DVLA for a 'Letter of Entitlement' which can only be done by phone and costs a fiver. That is basically what DGT will be doing to verify applicants eligibility although I suspect - or at least hope - they will be doing it by electronic means!

The possible advantage of having the letter is that it will be dated prior to the Dec 25th. cutoff so if something did happen to go wrong at DGT which meant that they failed to confirm eligibility in time you would have in your hand the result of their inquiry had they made it.


Last edited by Notdunroamin; Oct 22nd 2020 at 1:17 pm.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 1:41 pm
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

Originally Posted by Notdunroamin View Post
Recent update from the British Consulate:

"As you know one of the key actions for UK Nationals living in Spain is to exchange their UK driving licence for a Spanish one. However, recently it has been extremely difficult to get an appointment.

We have a key update from the DGT: The DGT is aware that UK and other licence holders are facing problems in obtaining an appointment. They will soon introduce a new process to streamline the current exchange process until the end of the year. UK licence holders will be asked to complete a form with the details the DGT needs in order to verify the driving licence with the UK authorities. This form must be submitted to the DGT by 25 December at the very latest. Once a person has presented their form, they will need to obtain an appointment with DGT to finalise the exchange process. However, as long as the form was submitted by the date above, and the licence verified by the DGT before the end of the year, the appointment to complete the process can be after 1 January 2021. We will share information on the new process as soon as we have it."

As a secondary measure I would suggest those potentially affected apply to DVLA for a 'Letter of Entitlement' which can only be done by phone and costs a fiver. That is basically what DGT will be doing to verify applicants eligibility although I suspect - or at least hope - they will be doing it by electronic means!

The possible advantage of having the letter is that it will be dated prior to the Dec 25th. cutoff so if something did happen to go wrong at DGT which meant that they failed to confirm eligibility in time you would have in your hand the result of their inquiry had they made it.
Ive already suggested to my solicitor for me to get the letter of entitlement. They said don't bother as the DGT wont accept it, they have had clients trying this already.
It seems that those of us who wont have our residency sorted by the end of Dec, although we start the process on the 20th Nov (after having been here 3 months) will unfortunately need to either
(a) submit the form to the DGT on or before dec 25th and hope that its accepted without having completed the residency process (something which on average in Alicante is taking around 8 weeks).
(b) Or take a Spanish driving test (something as my Spanish is not very good bothers me).

What bothers me also is that the UK Government in the withdrawal agreement have said that any EU citizen living in the Uk wont have to change their licence for a Uk one. Might have been nice for the Uk Gov to insist on the same.

The lack of appointments in Alicante is due mostly to the Brits coming out of the woodwork and finally changing licences after having been here for years.
And yes I have this from our solicitor who is merrily processing these applications.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 3:25 pm
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

I have a Gestor doing ours after months of frustration. She told me that at Malaga they have a separate entrance and no trouble with appointments.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 5:32 pm
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

With the new process being implemented I can only comment on my experience using a Gestor.

1. Forms filled out, held on file by Gestor
2. Medical test taken and 'certificate' handed over to Gestor with UK licence.
3. Received a Trafico stamped copy of UK licence
4. A long wait more or less 6 months and the Spanish licence received.

The new system suggests the delay between submitting a UK licence and it being validated by Swansea and then the Spanish licence being issued is reduced,. In practice the scramble to convert UK licences in the last few months might mean a similar delay is experienced. The positive seems to be that if the exchange process has commenced before 01.01.2021 then the delay should not mean a driving tests etc in Spain.

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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 7:22 pm
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

Originally Posted by missile View Post
I used an Abogado. They did it all for me. I gave them my UK license they filled in the forms. I got a temporary license within 14 days and Spanish license within a month by post.

That was several years ago. It might be a little more difficult / take longer now?
Which they subbed out to the Gestor they use for all the mundane tasks.
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Old Oct 22nd 2020, 9:28 pm
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Default Re: Did someone successfully exchange their british driving licence?

I agree. Much cheaper to go to a gestor in the first place. You don’t need an expensive lawyer to get you a driving licence.
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