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22nd Apr 2022

Ukrainian refugees can now obtain temporary Irish driving licences

Stephen Porzio

Transport Minister Eamon Ryan announced the move.

Ukrainians fleeing the war can now exchange their Ukrainian driving licence for an Irish driving licence.

Transport Minister Eamon Ryan signed an order on Friday (22 April) allowing Ukrainians temporarily resident in Ireland because of the ongoing conflict to drive their cars in the country so long as they make the driving licence switch.

The new licence will be valid for 12 months and will apply to cars only.

The measure is part of efforts to make it easier for Ukrainian refugees to “move around and access work, school or other vital public services” in Ireland.

It follows an announcement earlier this week that there will be increased and enhanced public transport services rolled out to support Ukrainians placed in more rural locations.

“After providing housing and shelter, one of the most important things we can do for our Ukrainian guests is to give them the ability to move around easily, where they are located first, and then throughout the country, where they may have family and friends,” Ryan said in a statement.

“This order allows Ukrainians to exchange their Ukrainian driving licences for an Irish licence on a temporary basis.

“It operates much like renting a car if we are in another country, for example, and comes with the same warnings that users must be acutely aware of the rules of the road in that country.

“I strongly urge anyone applying for an Irish licence to take time to familiarise themselves with the Irish road system.

“I hope that this order, coupled with the earlier move to increase and enhance public transport in certain rural areas, will give Ukrainians who have sought to find shelter in Ireland, greater freedom to explore our country, but importantly to be able to access work, school, college or to visit family and friends while they are here.”

An application to exchange a licence can be made in any National Driver Licence Service (NDLS) centre.

An appointment to attend an NDLS centre can be booked online.

The Road Safety Authority (RSA) is providing detailed information in Ukrainian on driving in Ireland on its website.

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