Brexit_What Now

Brexit_What Now

Now that we have officially left the EU and the transition period is well underway, it is time to take a look at Brexit and the transport industry in particular to see what if anything will change for professional drivers throughout 2020 and beyond.

We released a couple of posts on the topic of Brexit, towards the end of 2019 this Brexit post provided a bit of an overview into what Brexit is, as well as a bit of Brexit jargon busting.

More recently, our resident writer Caree R also posted on the topic of Brexit – What’s next for workers? This post provides quite a bit more detail into the Brexit process for 2020 and what you need to do as a worker in particular regard to settlement status.

When it comes to Brexit and the transport industry, the areas that have a potential for change include, the professional driver rules and regulations, the freedom of goods movement, as well as any new systems and accreditations that may come into force.

The transition period in place until 31st December 2020 provides UK citizens and businesses with the chance to acclimatise to any new rules and regulations that will come into force as a result of our withdrawal from the EU. This does mean that the transport industry has some time to prepare and put things in place ahead of the full transition on 1st January 2021.

In the run up to the Brexit deadline of 31st January many were calling for a clearer picture from the new government administration in regard to the logistics and transport industry.

The hottest topic and the main cause for concern was the movement of trucks between the UK and Europe, especially with the prospect of a no deal Brexit. If Brexit had taken place without a deal (and therefore a transition period) then the rules for international driving and the validity of UK driving licences in Europe would have changed overnight.

The prospect of UK drivers and similarly EU drivers needing to apply for and carry permits in order to travel between territories with immediate effect would have brought the entire logistics industry to a standstill. The impact that this could have had on the supply chain was daunting for everyone.

While the withdrawal agreement received Royal Assent and a no deal Brexit was avoided, it is still very early days and as we are only one month into the transition period, how things will stand as we draw towards the end of the year may not be entirely clear, but it is looking like it will be a much smoother transition that originally anticipated.

Currently and throughout the transition period this year, the current rules on international driving will continue to apply but from 1st January 2021 the documents you need to travel to the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein will change. It is very likely that you will need an international driving permit (IDP) to drive in some countries. You can get an IDP over the counter at the Post Office, and you will:

  • Need to be over 18.
  • Hold a full UK driving licence.
  • Live in Great Britain or Northern Ireland.

You can find more information on visiting Europe from 1st January 2021 and what documents you need over on the government website.

At this stage in the transition period it is safe to say that there is nothing for you do to do right now and there is very little cause for concern with regard to your future driving career. The transport and logistics industry will continue to power ahead, job opportunities will still be there and with the transition period in place, the disruption to your future work and shifts should be minimal if there is any disruption at all.

Have no doubt that a driving career is still an excellent prospect and we continue to support many employers by procuring drivers for job opportunities across the following roles:

As one of the oldest, largest and most trusted recruitment brands in the UK, we are perfectly placed to recruit qualified and reliable drivers into the industry both now and in the future no matter what changes through Brexit. Our specialist driving branches are on hand to recruit and support our driving community with information, advice as well as current and future career prospects.