The issue of traveling in a car registered in another person’s name is governed by the specific regulations in force in the country in which we are currently driving. Therefore, before traveling, it is worth checking what conditions must be met for legal driving, and in the case of an inspection you should have no problems.
It is common for us to rent a car from family or friends for longer trips, and some companies allow employees to use company cars during the holidays. As long as we have all the necessary vehicle papers and third-party insurance with us, we won’t have any major problems in our country.
When driving someone else’s car abroad, the situation is different. In many countries, the police or border guards may require the driver to provide additional documents that allow him to travel in addition to his car. In practice, such situations occur very rarely, but it is worth being prepared for such a circumstance.
Before we travel, it is worth looking at what the situation looks like, not only in the country we are going to, but also in the countries we are going through.
The written consent of the owner to use the car abroad can be divided into two types. In some countries you may need a notarized document. Here is a list of examples of countries where confirmation is required: Albania, Belarus, Bulgaria, Greece, Moldova, Serbia, Turkey, Ukraine, and Hungary.
To obtain such a certificate, you must go to a notary. Before we go there, though, it’s worth getting the documents translated. This can be done by a sworn translator, but often the notary can confirm the authorization in another language. A notarial confirmation of a signature under a power of attorney costs PLN 24.60. You need the car owner to sign the document in the presence of a notary.
In countries such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, Estonia, Russia and Italy, the written consent of the owner is required, without the need for a notarial deed. Then all you need is a translated document with the owner’s signature.
However, in many European countries it is possible to move without written permission. These include: Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Ireland, Lithuania, Latvia, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia.
Regulations in this area can change, so it’s worth checking the information on the embassy’s website before traveling or simply contacting the diplomatic mission. This way we avoid unpleasant surprises at the border.
On the Internet you can find many ready-made templates for the authorization signed by the car owner. You can create such a document yourself, but you must remember all the necessary information.
The authorization must contain the following information:
- first and last name of the authorized person (owner of the vehicle);
- name and surname of the person using the car;
- name and number of the identity document (ID card or passport);
- vehicle data (make, model, VIN number, registration number);
- signature of the car owner.
It is best to prepare such a document in the language of the country you are going to, but often a translation into English is sufficient.
The mere permission to travel with the loaner car is not sufficient to travel safely. In addition, you must bring basic documents with you:
- drivers license;
- vehicle registration certificate;
- confirmation of the insurance.
There is a lot of discussion on the internet about mandatory equipment for a car abroad. Most European countries have signed the Vienna Convention on Road Traffic. This means that when we travel abroad by car, we only need the equipment required by national law.
Not being allowed to use the car abroad can be difficult, but there is probably no fine. The services (police, border guards) may have to check that the car we are driving is not on the list of wanted vehicles. This can take a while and in extreme cases can take up to several hours. That is why it is worth taking the required document with you when you travel.