International traders who use road transport for cross-border trade need to be aware that the rules on vehicle tax vary from country to country.
UK registered goods vehicles are exempt from taxes on 'circulation or possession' - similar to UK vehicle tax - in those countries with which the UK has a bilateral agreement. Apart from such exemptions, goods vehicles are subject to the vehicle taxation system of any country through which they travel. The amount of tax you have to pay may vary from time to time and from country to country.
Presently, the following countries levy charges at varying levels on visiting foreign vehicles using their roads - Albania, Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Jordan, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey.
You can find out more about the bilateral agreements in force between the UK and other countries in our guide on international authorisations and permits for road haulage.
Nationality sign or GB sticker
All vehicles registered in the UK must display the international registration letters GB on the rear of the vehicle when taken temporarily abroad.
UK registered vehicles displaying Euro-plates (a circle of 12 stars above the national identifier on a blue background) no longer need to fix a GB sticker to the rear of their vehicle when driving in European Union (EU) countries. In non-EU countries, a GB sticker must still be displayed on the rear of UK-registered motor vehicles, caravans or trailers.
Most motoring organisations and many tour operators will supply GB stickers.
In addition to the Euro symbol or GB sticker, drivers and keepers of vehicles registered in Great Britain are also permitted to voluntarily display national flags and certain identifiers on their number plates.
Important: After Brexit, lorry and truck drivers from the UK will need extra documentation to drive in the EU and EEA.
Read the latest UK government guidance for lorry and goods vehicle drivers on preparing to drive in the EU after Brexit.