Duty of Care
Corporate Driving & Training

RSA Issues Changes to Irish Driver Licensing Rules

Since January 19 2013 new EU rules relating to the licensing of drivers of some vehicles has changed. The changes apply to new drivers taking out either a learner permit or a full licence for the first time. The most common licence held by Irish drivers is for a motorcar, a category B licence – this is not going to change.

A minor change in the way some licences are described is planned, presently where there is a car/truck/bus and trailer combination it is described as EB, EC, ED etc., from January all new licences will show them as BE, CE, DE etc.

Description of licensing categories from 19 January 2013

The table below sets out information in summary form with greater detail in the links which follow.

What’s Changing

The driving licence will be in a new plastic card format.

Who will it affect

Any person applying for a first licence or renewing an existing licence or learner permit.

When does it apply

All licences/learner permits issued from 19 January 2013.


What’s Changing

Motorcycle licences: New stages in the licence process, introduction of a new category of motorcycle, and new rules for progressive and direct access as well as minimum age levels in some cases.

Who will it affect

Any person who wants to learn to ride a Motorcycle or change to a higher category of motorcycle depending on age.

When does it apply

All licences issued from 19 January 2013.


What’s Changing

Ages at which you can take out a truck (C & CE) or bus (D or DE) licence or learner permit.

Who will it affect

People aged under 21(trucks) and 24 (buses) other than those taking the Certificate of Professional Competence taking out a truck or bus licence.

When does it apply

All learner permits/full licences issued from 19 January 2013.


What’s Changing

Renewal for all truck and bus licences every five years with medical report needed in all cases.

Who will it affect

All full licence holders on renewal of their licence for trucks and buses.

When does it apply

All licences on renewal from the 19th January 2013.


What’s Changing

Additional changes to representative vehicles for truck and bus categories for the practical driving test.

Who will it affect

Persons taking a driving test in a truck or a bus.

When does it apply

All tests conducted from the 30th June 2014.


What’s Changing

New rules for weight of truck, and truck or bus with trailer, for the driving test.

Who will it affect

Persons taking a driving test in a truck or bus.

When does it apply

All tests conducted from the 19th January 2013.


What’s Changing

New rules for weight of car trailer when presenting for the category EB practical driving test.

Who will it affect

People doing a practical driving test in a car and trailer combination.

When does it apply

All tests conducted from 19 January 2013.


What’s Changing

Changes to licensing rules regarding the limit on the design gross vehicle weight of trailer drawn by the holder of a car and trailer full licence/learner permit category EB.

Who will it affect

People who get a learner permit/full licence from 19th January 2013 in Category EB (car and trailer).

When does it apply

All licences and learner permits issued from 19 January 2013.


More Information

For more information on each of these items, please click on the links above. These will provide you with more information and frequently asked questions which may address any queries you have. If you have a query which is not addressed in this information, please contact us by emailing info@ndls.ie or LoCall number 1890 40 60 40.

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