December 1, 2023

Some British expats in the TRNC may be in jeopardy with driving and residency….

By Trevor Hughes……

This month’s News Round has been sent early because of the importance of the information.

International Driving Permits (IDP)

Because of the current Brexit negotiations, if there is a “no deal”, you will need to be aware of:

Driving in the EU after Brexit

The UK Government has confirmed that if there is a no deal with the EU then recognition of UK driving licences in the EU may end.

What is an IDP?

An International Driving Permit (IDP) is a permit that allows you to drive in countries where a UK licence alone is not sufficient. These countries include all European Countries and South Cyprus.

Do I need one?

Yes, an IDP is required or recommended in over 140 countries.

How do I apply?

Firstly, an application can only be made in the UK. When over there, find your nearest Post Office branch usually a main post office in a town. Take with you your full valid UK photo-card driving licence, a passport sized photo and your valid passport as proof of identification if presenting an older paper version licence.

What you need when applying

  • Full valid UK driving licence – photo card or an older paper licence
  • A passport sized photograph
  • The £5.50 application fee (cash or debit / credit card)
  • Original valid passport as proof of identification, if presenting an older paper version licence

The permit is only valid for a twelve-month period and needs to be renewed if you wish to continue to drive in South Cyprus/Europe.

You can make an application for someone else if you so wish, the only difference is, take two passport sized photographs, one must have a written statement on the reverse side stating that it is a true likeness of you, duly signed by the person who is making the application for you, and dated. You do not have to be a professionally educated person to do this.

All indications point to the Greek Cypriot Authorities preventing you from driving over there after the 29th March 2019, if you have not got an IDP in your possession.

Many people go shopping over the border and or provide a taxi service for their visitors. In the event of a Brexit no deal the border staff will not allow you to drive over there unless you hold an IDP!!

We are in “unchartered waters” and who knows what the requirements will be twelve months from now?

This ruling will also apply to your visitors should they wish to drive over the border.

Even if the UK Government manages to secure a deal, what have you lost, £5.50? which may avoid you experiencing the Greeks playing silly beggars.

Temporary Residence

What have I been saying for a long time when asked “should I continue renewing my Temporary Residence, or not”? The compulsory requirement from 2010, if you were 60 plus years was shelved and considered “a gentleman’s agreement” which was never put in writing.

It’s amazing, when the TRNC Government needs to swell its coffers, they tend to look at the expats as a way of raising much-needed cash.

Although this is “a shot across the bows” the devil will be in the detail and all will be revealed in the months to come!

Questions that will need to be answered are:

  • Will you need some form of medical check?
  • How much will it cost?
  • What category of residence will be needed to obtain this Residence?
  • What about people who rarely visit here, but rent their property?
  • Will there be a fee to be paid, if so, how much and will it be back dated?
  • Will we be going back to the bad old days of queuing for hours on end waiting to be seen?
  • Will there be an upper age limit?

Watch This Space in The Coming Months

Bayram Holidays

Tuesday 23rd April National Sovereignty and Children’s Day. Government Offices, schools, Banks and some businesses will be closed for the day.

We do a monthly news round which I send out via email and this also goes on the CyprusScene website and weekly online Enewspaper which is free to you and will keep you up to date on the ever changing things here in the TRNC.

For any further information please email me through the contact box below or at Capital Bank in Alsancak.

[contact-form-7 id=”605543″ title=”Contact form 2″]

8 thoughts on “North Cyprus Trevor’s Tips for April 2019

  1. Hi Trevor – the message box won’t send? Email below:-

    Hi Trevor.
    Love the newsletters, they’re a great source of information.
    I’m planning on an early retirement shortly after my 55th birthday.
    Any advice I read always starts at 60. What will change or affect me being 5 years younger?
    We already own our villa in Lapta with full Kocan absolute.
    Many thanks
    Sandy and Tracy

    1. hello Sandy and Tracy

      The only difference to you is that it is compulsory to do your Temporary Residence every year until you are 60 years old. If you wish I can assist you in your application.

  2. How would I be able to get an IDP if I have no plans to go back to the UK? I would be loathe to give my passport to a friend who was going to the UK.

    1. Your choice is send it back by registered post (have done it) or perhaps by DHL

  3. Hello Trevor,
    I am new to this Newsletter and am very impressed by your postings. Thank you so much for taking the time to research on our behalf and communicate succinctly.

    I am 60+, TRNC home owner and a ‘swallow’, not British but an EU country passport holder, in possession of an IDP and rely on TRNC hire car.

    After the 90 days do I need to apply for

    – a Temp. Residency Permit
    – would it suffice to cross the border into South Cyprus on a day trip or possibly more days?

    * a TRNC driving license
    * will the IDP be recognised?

    Many thanks,

    1. Hello Hillary,

      When you have spent 90 days here in any one year, if you intend driving here you must, hold a valid TRNC driving license, otherwise your insurance will not be recognised by the insurance company and the police. Because you are over 60 years old this makes your application more straight forward.

      If you wish, we can make your application for you, our fee is 80 TL over and above the licence fee.

      On the subject of Temporary Residence even though you are over 60 years old you should make your application at least once, although this may change later.

      There are changes afoot and all expats will have to register themselves with the Ministry irrespective of their age every 1 or 2 years.

      (for British visitors) Depending on Brexit, a UK driving license will not be recognised to drive over the border at the moment, and an International Driving Permit will be required if the UK comes out of the EU.

      The permits can only be got from a British Post Office. If you cannot get to the UK, someone can make the application for you. The cost is £5.50 per application per year. The IDP is not recognised here in the TRNC.

      Going over the border to get an extension to your 90 days is against the Law here, although some people have got away with it for years, but this practice will cease soon.

      I hope this is helpful to you, but if you need more information you can contact me direct on

      Trevor Hughes

      PS We will be testing this system next week in the UK and will update information as necessary.

  4. Hello Trevor. Just found this site and I am catching up on everything on it. Great news and information.
    We are coming to N. Cyprus in two weeks time to look for houses for a permanent move near the end of the year. I hope to bring my own car across Europe and through Turkey before crossing by ferry. Can you suggest the best ferry route from Turkey to Kyrenia? I think there are 3 but I believe one is foot passengers only. Thanks.

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