The UK government declared that “GB” bumper stickers will no longer be acknowledged in abroad travel. Since Tuesday 28 September, all motorist must display a UK sticker clearly or have the UK identifier on their number plate, says the Evening Standard.
RAC spokesman Rod Dennis said: “It might only be a matter of replacing two letters, but this is a significant change for drivers who in normal times take their cars outside the UK.
“Drivers also need to remember that number plates featuring the blue band and letters ‘GB’ next to the European golden stars are also no longer valid,” he added.
Penalties for noncompliance to the new rules remain unclear. However, drivers are warned they may be refused entry to some countries without the UK sticker.
Enough fuel to get as far as Dover? To drive into Europe you now need a “UK” symbol, and must remove “GB” stickers
The UN approved a UK government request to make the change “to symbolise our unity as a nation”
No stickers needed for UK drivers in Ireland https://t.co/kyqbhx3XNp
— Simon Calder (@SimonCalder) September 29, 2021
Previously, The GB sticker was valid for cars from England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The move was revealed by the United Nations. According to Evening Standard, the UN said it had received “a notification stating that the United Kingdom is changing the distinguishing sign that it had previously selected for display in international traffic on vehicles registered in the United Kingdom, from ‘GB’ to ‘UK’”.
In response, a Department for Transport spokesperson said: “Changing the national identifier from GB to UK symbolises our unity as a nation and is part of a wider move towards using the UK signifier across government.
“We notified the UN of our intention to make these changes in July, and have been working with the sector to implement the change.”
What are the new rules specifically?
According to government guidelines anyone planning to drive outside the UK now needs “to display a UK sticker clearly on the rear of your vehicle if your number plate has a GB identifier with union flag, a Euro symbol, a national flag of England, Scotland and Wales or numbers and letters only with no flag or identifier.
However, anyone with a number plate that includes the UK identifier with the Union flag, also known as the Union Jack, does not need a UK sticker.
The guidelines add: “If you’re in Spain, Cyprus or Malta, you must display a UK sticker no matter what is on your number plate.
“You do not need a UK sticker or number plate to drive in Ireland.”
Source: Evening Standard