The New Hire Car Rules - My Experience

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by nheather, Jun 21, 2015.

  1. nheather

    nheather
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    Travelled to the US yesterday. On Friday evening, my wife reminded me of the new UK requirement to get a 'code' within 48 hours of the hire start from the government website.

    I was a bit blasé saying I didn't need it but she convinced me that it was safer to have one than not. I generated the number, printed it out and then made the mistake of folding it up and putting it inside my driving licence (I still have an old style paper licence),

    In the US I went to the Avis counter and handed over my driving licence. Unfortunately I forgot the code was still in there - had intended to take it out and present it as follows.

    I travel to the US regularly and usually what happens is they take a quick glance at my driving licence and hand over the keys. This is what happened yesterday.

    They took my licence but then noticed the new code document. They had no idea what it was, asked me whether it was a temporary licence, didn't believe my answers, called in other staff and a manager to look at it. The normal 30 second process took nearly 20 minutes before they would give me the keys.

    So my take - the new procedure has not been rolled out very well, Avis at Orlando International Airport had no idea what it was and it only served to create confusion and delay. My advice is take the new document with you but absolutely keep it to yourself unless the hirer asks for it. Don't think you are bing helpful volunteering it because you could end up with the delay and confusion that I experienced.

    Cheers,

    Nigel
     
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  2. qwerty321

    qwerty321
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    Thinking about it, I got lucky as I hired a car abroad on the 7th June. I vaguely know about the change but didn't know that you had to generate a code online.
     
  3. thudspud

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    I didn't think you needed the code if you still had an old paper licence?
     
  4. DodgeTheViper

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    I have never been asked for the paper copy of my license when hiring a car in the US. I've always took it with me just in case but never been asked to produce it.

    It is very easy to generate the share code should you happen to need it for any reason. When hiring the car, just hand over your card license and no more, unless asked.
     
  5. IronGiant

    IronGiant
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    Any new points won't be recorded on a paper licence any more even if that is all you have, so the only way to check whether you have any current points is to use the code. So I would imagine it will become more necessary to have it with you once the hirers catch on.
     
  6. nheather

    nheather
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    But this was Avis that wasn't aware of it not Backstreet Budget Rentals and Son.

    If they are going to use this code they need to do a much better job getting all the rental companies imformed.

    Cheers,

    Nigel
     
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  7. ldoodle

    ldoodle
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    What's this for? From the sounds of it (IG's post) so the rental companies can check if you have any points.

    Is it supposed to be mandatory; hiring in Europe in October. I still have paper license.
     
  8. Digital Tench

    Digital Tench
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    This is America you are talking about..."global" means East to West coast to them. I'm not surprised at all that they haven't heard of another countries process.

    At all.

     
  9. imightbewrong

    imightbewrong
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    Yes - it's now the official method for them to check your license for points etc. Whether they know about it or even do it is another matter.
     
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  10. FZR400RRSP

    FZR400RRSP
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    Do you mean a paper counterpart, in conjunction with a credit card style licence?
    You 'shouldn't' have a paper counterpart any more, you're 'supposed' to bin it.
    I'm not binning mine, yet.
    I'm in Spain in two weeks, I intend to take my paper counterpart and apply for a code.
    Best of both worlds, IMO.
     
  11. RuddyRoad

    RuddyRoad
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    Old paper licences (pink or green) without a photo ID card are still in existence. However, as IG said earlier, the understanding is that these won't be updated either if there is a driving offence, so that would suggest that everyone should get a code.
     
  12. imightbewrong

    imightbewrong
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    The pure paper ones were discontinued in 1998 so I guess people will still have them if they've managed nearly 20 years of clean driving and haven't moved house or taken on a husband's surname :)
     
  13. FZR400RRSP

    FZR400RRSP
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    I blame Avis for your issue, not the DVLA.
    Avis were in an article about the changes a few weeks ago in the Telegraph, commenting on it.
    So as a company, they are aware of it.
    Which leaves poor training on their part or a thick operative as the reason for your problem.
     
  14. RuddyRoad

    RuddyRoad
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    You don't need to have clean driving - old paper copies would be sent away after an offence and returned with the offence recorded on them up until the change that has just come in. They didn't upgrade you to a photo licence just because you committed an offence.
     
  15. MarkyPancake

    MarkyPancake
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    What is the link to the site for getting one of these codes? My Google ninja skills are coming up empty.
     
  16. DIYlady

    DIYlady
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    I still have an old style paper licence, the only tend to get replaced if you move house, change your name or get points. So I don't think points gave been added to old style licenses for a while. My guess is this will continue, ie If you commit an offence you have to submit your paper licence and get given a new style one in exchange.
     
  17. IronGiant

    IronGiant
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  18. FZR400RRSP

    FZR400RRSP
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    I think this is the starting point.

    View your driving licence information - GOV.UK

    Once you get past a certain point, you must be asked if you are only wanting to view your own driving record, or share the record with someone else (I.E. a car hire company).
    Bear in mind the PIN you are issued with only lasts 72 hours, so don't apply too early.
    This PIN allows the hire car company to view your up-to-date driving history, for free.
     
  19. nheather

    nheather
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    Yep, that's me.

    Still have a paper pink/green driving licence.

    Although I don't think your definition is entirely correct - my wife also has a green/pink which has points on her licence she got after 2000. SO you don't have to have 20 years of clean driving.

    Cheers,

    Nigel
     
  20. DVD-Man

    DVD-Man
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    "create confusion and delay", as a father of a young boy I just thought of the Fat Controller when you said that from Thomas The Tank Engine.
     
  21. imightbewrong

    imightbewrong
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    Ah right - I assumed if you sent back an old paper one you wouldn't get it back - I guess it would confuse things to force that to be combined with getting a photo license.
     
  22. IronGiant

    IronGiant
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    My take on it:

    We on AVF are very well informed and know fairly well what the procedure is, despite a few ambiguities as to who exactly needs it.

    So, anyone planning to hire a car whether it is in the UK or worldwide, would be well advised to get a code. And as Nigel suggested, stick it in your back pocket and only produce it if you are asked for it. And as FZR suggested, if you have a paper copy take that with you. But similarly,don't produce it unless asked.
     
  23. imightbewrong

    imightbewrong
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    And make sure you take a note of the procedure if you are going to be hiring a car more than 72 hour after you get there, and might not have internet access (although hopefully this gets rarer as time goes on).
     
  24. Epicurus

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    In my experience of American car hire they've never asked for my paper licence once. Then ever since I had a Hertz gold membership they've not asked for the card either. I certainly wouldn't be volunteering information that might make life more difficult, although it's useful to hear of your experience nheather.
     
  25. nheather

    nheather
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    I have Avis preferred with about 100 seperate hires, totally over 300 days over the last three years.

    They always ask to see my driving licence in the US, although I always get free upgrades, some welcome like the Mustang and some less so, like the Nissan Pathfinder.

    Cheers,

    Nigel
     
  26. nheather

    nheather
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    That certainly did become the case but not immediately. It took a few years to come into force after the advent of the plastic card.

    Cheers,

    Nigel
     
  27. Epicurus

    Epicurus
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    That's funny because I'm supposed to get free upgrades but never do, I guess I should just be happy at the lack of paperwork!
     
  28. KelvinS1965

    KelvinS1965
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    Thanks for the heads up nheather. :) I'm going to Orlando this summer so I would have just taken my licence and paper part anyway, though now I will print out the code just incase they start asking for it.

    I don't want any more hassle than necessary at the hire desk as they always seem to harass me to take out extra insurance and other costly options when I'm tired from the long flight.

    I rarely seem to get an upgrade these days: Early 90s I went to the USA a few times and got an upgrade every time (often 2-3 grades higher than the model paid for). I got to the stage that I would never bother paying for more than the basic model as I always got an upgrade...then it stopped. :D This time we've just gone for a mid range as there is only 3 of us, but at least it will be big enough to fit the cases in to and from the airport and will be OK for any longer drives (the hotel is only 12 miles from the airport). Booked fairly last minute, so maybe they'll run out of mid range and give us an upgrade, but no problem if they don't.
     
  29. imightbewrong

    imightbewrong
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    Now updated to a much more sensible three-weeks:

    DVLA gives more time for car hire planning - BBC News

    (btw it was 72 hours, not 48 hours before)
     
  30. alan280170

    alan280170
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    Since the photo licence came out, I have never been asked for the paper copy ever. I rent 6-10 a year on average. They barley look at my licence in Houston.
     

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