The DVLA is the Government department that oversees the registration of drivers and vehicles in the UK. If you have an enquiry relating to the DVLA’s services, contact the DVLA helpline on 0844 453 0118.
Why would I need to contact the DVLA Helpline?
- For assistance with your driving licence, including changes of address.
- For help with both the theory and practical driving tests.
- For assistance with taxing your vehicle.
- To make a complaint about a DVLA product or service.
Other DVLA Phone Numbers
|Tax||0844 453 0118|
|Head Office||0844 453 0118|
|Driving tests||0844 453 0118|
The DVLA Head Office Address
|Head Office||Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA),
DVLA Helpline Opening Times
To drive a vehicle in the UK, it must be taxed. Until a few years ago, you taxed your vehicle and displayed a tax disc in the window of your car. However, that has now been abolished and you no longer need to display evidence- all tax information is stored online.
The easiest way to organise vehicle tax is online. You’ll need to have a recent reminder or a warning letter from the DVLA. If you don’t have that, you can tax the car with the vehicle’s log book or the new keeper’s details slip if you’re the new buyer of a car (you will find this in the vehicle’s logbook). When you opt to purchase tax from the DVLA website, you can make a one-off payment via credit/debit card, or set up a Direct Debit.
If you don’t want to pay your tax online, you can visit your local Post Office. However, you will need the vehicle’s logbook/new keeper details slip.
Lastly, if your vehicle is currently off the road, you don’t have to tax it, but you do need to make a Statutory Off-Road Notification. You can’t use the car on the road until you tax it again.
DVLA Vehicle Check
You can use the DVLA’s vehicle check service to see information about a vehicle. You will need to know the make of the vehicle and its registration number. However, you will be able to see a vast range of information such as when its current tax expires, the date it was first registered, the current MOT status, colour, engine size, CO2 emissions, the year it was manufactured and the current rate of vehicle tax. If you need information about the keeper of a vehicle, you’ll need to write to the DVLA- circumstances where you might use this include finding out who was responsible for an accident, tracing the owner of an abandoned car or issuing parking tickets.
DVLA Number Plates
Your number plate must show the registration number of your vehicle clearly. If you display your number plates incorrectly you could be fined up to £1000 and your car could potentially fail to pass a MOT test. You can only get number plates from a registered number plate supplier and you’ll have to confirm your address and your rights to use the registration number. You can also opt for a personalised (also known as private) number plate- you could purchase directly from the DVLA or from an approved private dealer. Once you own a private number plate, you can transfer it to each new car that you buy by applying to the DVLA.
The DVLA holds several number plate auctions a year. The auctions are your chance to buy a private number plate. You’ll find some popular and distinctive registrations for sale. The auctions are usually held at hotels around the country and although it is a great day out, if you can’t make it, you can also bid online or over the phone. The next DVLA auction is a timed auction in January 2017. You can find more information about the DVLA’s auctions here.
DVLA Theory Test
If you are a learner wanting to drive a car, motorbike, lorry, bus, or coach, you will need to pass a theory test before you can take the practical exam. You can book your theory test online. For cars, there are two elements to the theory test: multiple choice questions and a hazard perception test. You take both the tests at the same time. You can take the theory test when you’re 17 as long as you have your provisional licence. For the multiple choice aspect, you have 57 minutes to answer 50 multiple choice questions. The best way to practice for this part is to use the DVLA theory test app – just ensure you download the official version (around £5) rather than another version, as the official app uses the questions you will get in the test. In the hazard perception clips, you watch 14 video clips and you must click as soon as you see a potential hazard developing- this could be a pedestrian crossing in front of you, a cyclist, a car reversing out of its driveway or a learner driver who might potentially stall. To pass the test, you’ll need 43/50 on the multiple choice and 44/70 on the hazard perception. The theory test currently costs £23 for cars.
DVLA Driving Test
The practical driving test currently costs £62. You can only book your driving test once you have passed the theory test. There’s no minimum amount of lessons that you need to pass the test, but most people recommend you have around 40 hours of lessons. There are five aspects to the practical test: an eyesight check where you will be asked to read a number plate from a distance, “show me, tell me” vehicle safety questions, general driving ability, one reversing manoeuvre and a section of independent driving. The manoeuvre will be either parallel parking, reversing into a bay, reversing around a corner or a turn in the road. Overall, you will be driving for around 40 minutes, including a ten minute ‘independent drive’ at the end where you follow road signs. At the end of the test, if you have passed you’ll be given a pass certificate and you can begin driving straight away. If you haven’t passed, your examiner will tell you what faults you made and you’ll need to book another test at least 10 days away.
About the DVLA
The DVLA was founded in 1965 as the Driver Vehicle Licensing Centre. The name changed to the DVLA in 1990. All DVLA operations are based in the head office in Swansea.
For more information about the DVLA’s services, call the DVLA helpline using the number on this page.