Renewing your licence during the Covid-19 pandemic
We are aware of the problems some drivers are having in renewing their driving licences when this can’t be done online, for example when you don’t have a passport. The DVLA due to Covid-19 are experiencing difficulties processing paper applications but are accepting paper applications where drivers are unable to use online services, if this applies you should submit a paper application. You may be able to continue to drive whilst your application is being processed if you meet the following criteria:
Licence renewal at 70
RoSPA have been made aware of a number of websites offering licence renewal at 70 for a fee, usually in exchange for an 'application checking service'. As far as we are aware, this fee is non-refundable.
You can renew your driving licence online with DVLA for free* if you’re 70 or over – or will be 70 in the next 90 days. Please visit: https://www.gov.uk/renew-driving-licence-at-70
*If you have a paper licence, you will need to provide an up-to-date passport photo with your renewal application.
Older Driver Assessments now available in North West of England
Transport for Greater Manchester are offering a Safer Driving for Longer course, which enables experienced older drivers to reflect on their own driving, increase confidence in their ability and also to consider efficient alternatives to driving. For further information, click here or telephone 0300 123 1518.
DVLA eyesight awareness campaign, EYE 735T
The DVLA eyesight awareness campaign reminds people to check they can read a car number plate from 20 metres (about 5 car lengths or 8 parking bays) away. Anyone concerned about their eyesight should visit their optician or optometrist for an eye test.
More details in the DVLA press release.
This new Cost Calculator is for drivers who may be considering whether to swap their car and use public transport or other means of getting about instead. Further advice is available in the Retire from Driving section.
“Behind the Wheel”
A guide for older drivers, “Behind the wheel: Tips for safe and confident driving in later life”, by Independent Age can be ordered or downloaded from https://www.independentage.org/information/advice-guides-factsheets-leaflets/behind-wheel. It covers things you can do to feel safe and confident when driving, and the alternatives if you decide to stop driving in the future.
These leaflets and posters are intended to help elderly drivers to drive safely, for longer. They are free to download to display (for example, in waiting rooms) or give to drivers and their families. They provide simple tips to help drivers consider whether their driving is changing, and if so, what they can do about it.
Driving a car is an important part of personal, family and work life for millions of us, providing freedom and independence to get about as and when we need to. Driving can be enjoyable and pleasant, but it also involves a certain amount of risk, and can be stressful.
Experienced drivers are, in general, safer than those with less experience. But as we get older, our health and fitness, often including our eyesight, physical condition and reaction times, begins to decline. Age related conditions can also begin to affect our driving. Of course, this is different for each person; there isn't an age at which we automatically become unsafe to drive.
Many drivers recognise that their driving ability is changing and so change when and where they drive (this is often called 'self-regulation'). There are also several simple things we can do to help us continue to drive, safely, for as long as possible, such as taking regular driving assessments and refresher training.
However, there comes a time when each of us need to reduce our driving, or even stop altogether. Taking advice from your doctor, or another health professional, and from family or friends can be very helpful.
This website will help you to:
- Recognise whether and how your driving is changing
- Decide what you can do to cope with these changes and find help, such as medical advice, driving assessments and training and vehicle adaptations
- Find a driving assessment or refresher training for your needs
- Understand your legal obligations, such as DVLA rules and procedures
- Plan for the need to change when and where you drive, and if it becomes necessary, to retire from driving.
Use the links above for further information and advice.