Getting a Spanish Driving License

Spanish Driving License

The question of getting a Spanish driving license was raised recently.

If you are a resident in Fuerteventura (and of course anywhere in Spain), as from 1st January 2022 your British driving license will no longer be valid and you must obtain a Spanish driving license.

Prior to 31st December 2020, this was easily done as you could simply take a brief medical examination and then exchange your British License for a Spanish one. However, this has all changed since Brexit, and if you fall into one of the following categories, you will not be able to exchange your license and must sit a Spanish driving test.

  1. If you are a resident but did not pre-register your intent to exchange your license with Tráfico prior to 31st December 2020
  2. You pre-registered your intent, but then renewed your British Driving License before you were able to exchange your license
  3. You moved here after 31st December 2020.

Marie Hillier looked into what was necessary in order to do this, contacting recommended driving schools in both Puerto del Rosario and Corralejo, and has kindly shared her results with us:

Driving Lessons

Prior to taking a Spanish driving test you must have lessons, and in order to do this you must first pre-register with a driving school. This will cost about 150€. The driving instructor can then lodge your registration with Tráfico, allowing you to drive.

The cost of a 45 minute lesson tends to be about 30€.

If you happen to find a rare instructor who can speak English, they will only tend to give the lessons in Spanish, to make sure that you understand commands given when you take your test. However, the good news is that they will allow someone who speaks fluent Spanish in the car with you during the lessons, should you need it. But the ‘bad’ news is that you will need to have at least basic Spanish for the actual test.

There is no minimum number of lessons you must have before taking your test. However, your driving instructor is the only one who can decide when you’re ready to take your test.

The Driving Test

The test is in two parts – theory and practical.

Theory exams can be taken in English at the driving school. Your theory certificate will be issued by Tráfico and organised by the driving school itself. The certificate, same as in the UK, will be valid for up to 2 years, so you must have passed your driving test before the end of that period.

Prior to your practical test you will have to take a medical, which will last up to 3 months.

The practical part will be taken in Spanish, so you must have at least learnt enough Spanish during your lessons to understand instructions given by the examiner before taking your test.

The final exam can take place in Puerto del Rosario. They have a few fixed routes around the town, but not many (4 or 5). Most streets are one way, but there are numerous stop signs, at which you must come to a complete stop, not a rolling stop as you do in the UK! There are also many roundabouts to muster, which is where most of the errors are observed.

Spanish Driving License

Once you have passed the exams and received your certificate you will be required to go to Tráfico to get your license.

Needless to say it will be reasonably expensive. One person who was in the process of doing the theory and practice, stated she thought the total cost was going to be about 2.000€, while others have quoted 1.500€, so it seems a good idea to shop around if you can.

PracticaTest have a practice test in English for the theory examination.

In addition to the above, check out this article on the possibility getting a driver’s license without having to go through the driving school. However, do not

NOTICE: The information on this website is intended to serve as a guide for UK Nationals who reside, or wish to reside, in Fuerteventura. While we try to make it as accurate and up-to-date as possible, we do not assume any legal or other liability for its accuracy, and refer you to existing Spanish National, Schengen and EU regulations.

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    1. No. When you first become a resident of Spain you have 6 months to obtain a Spanish driving license. After that time your British driver’s license will be invalid in Spain and you are not allowed to drive unless you have a Spanish driving license.

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