When it comes to travelling abroad with your car then there are several important things to consider other than just your route and destination.
The most important thing to realise about a car that you ‘own’ on contract hire or other financing agreement is that you don’t legally own the vehicle.
The legal right of possession of the vehicle is retained by the financing company. This is most evident if you don’t have the V5 document for the vehicle.
This is the document that confers ownership of the vehicle. Not having this document can cause problems when it comes to travelling abroad as several border crossings will require you to produce the document to prove you own the vehicle.
So if you don’t have the V5, how do you get around this. Well, it starts with you contacting your finance company with details of the trip. What you need to do is obtain a VE103B form which is called a ‘Vehicle on Hire’ form.
This document will be sufficient for most border crossings to indicate that you have permission to use the vehicle in the country. This document will need to be issued to you by your finance company so you must keep them in the loop.
If you already have a V5 document for your vehicle then you should be good to take your vehicle abroad for up to 28 days. You will need to read your contract carefully though as there may be other clauses written into the contract which prevent you from doing this.
Obtaining a VE103B
You need to start the process of getting a VE103B at least 14 days in advance of travelling, as it will take some time for the finance company to process your request. Also, be aware that they may well charge you for this service. The finance company will want to know the name of the driver of the vehicle as well as their normal UK address. They will want a contact telephone number.
They will also want to know the date you are leaving and returning to the UK as well as which countries you are visiting. They will also want to know the names of any other drivers. Once you have the VE103B then it is good for up to 12 months, though there may be restrictions on the total amount of time you can travel abroad.
Besides getting the permissions needed above, you will need to make sure that you have proper insurance cover for your car whilst abroad. You should also make sure that you have adequate breakdown cover whilst travelling abroad in case there are issues.
Finally, you need to make sure that you have adhered to any country-specific requirements, this can include the need for breakdown kits or air quality monitoring tags.