When we start to reach our “golden years”, it may seem as if you’re immediately ruled out for any driving independence, however, this isn’t the case. When you turn 70, you just need to renew your driving license every three years if you wish to continue driving.
At CarCliq, we want to make sure you know every aspect about driving over the age of 70.
So, what’s the process of renewing my driving licence once I’m over 70?
Without any input from yourself, the DVLA will be notified of your age and instantly send you a “D46P” application form 90 days prior to your 70th birthday.
Whatever your personal preference is, this can either be filled out by hand and returned by post or renewed online. In addition to filling out all your details, you have the opportunity to update your photo at the same – this is recommended as your appearance may have changed since your last application. You can expect to receive your new shiny license in as little as a week if you apply online, however, all postal applications can take up to three weeks.
Do I need to retake my driving test?
If you were to declare you have a medical condition or disability, the DVLA may decide you need to have your driving ability reviewed – this can be done via a mobility centre or a local driver assessment scheme.
What about a medical examination, will I need to have one of those?
Again, if you feel that you’ve developed a health condition or disability which could impact your driving ability, it’s important to notify the DVLA. In addition to this, you must provide any important information if you feel your condition has worsened since the license was last issued.
If the DVLA are unsure about your driving ability, they may require for you to complete a medical examination before the final decision is made on giving you your new licence. Although, we feel it’s in your best interest to have a medical examination before each renewal to make sure you’re fit to meet the driving standards.
Please don’t worry if you’re thinking once you declare your medical condition, the DVLA will take your licence away from you. However, they actually analyse your condition and give you guidance and some adaptations which may be needed to your car.
What medical conditions would I need to declare to the DVLA?
- Diabetes – only if it requires insulin treatment.
- Parkinson’s disease
- Sleep apnoea
- Physical disabilities
- Visual impairments
Please remember, it’s important, to be honest with the DVLA. If you fail to do so, you could be fined up to £1,000.
Will I need to book an appointment with my local opticians to renew my licence?
You’ll see as you’re filling in your application for your renewal, that you’ll be asked to declare you meet the minimum eyesight standard for driving. The minimum eyesight standard is a minimum of at least 20 metres (65ft) to read a standard number plate, either with glasses or without. This equates to at least being able to see the least decimal 0.5 on the Snellen scale (the part where you read the rows of letters from big to small).
We recommend you have an opticians appointment every two years, just to be sure you’re meeting the eyesight standard – otherwise, the consequence you will face is your driving licence being revoked. Remember it’s important to report to the DVLA any condition which affects your eyes, including things such as long and short-sightedness and colour blindness.
How will me turning 70 or older effect my insurance?
If you weren’t aware, age is a major influencer when your car insurance is reviewed and therefore when you hit the age of 70, unfortunately, you may see an increase in your usual premium renewal quote. This is down to drivers over the age of 70 making more expensive claims in comparison to middle-aged drivers.
In addition to this, it’s important to let your insurance provider know if you have developed a condition. The reason for this is it could put you at risk of invalidating your policy.
With insurance premiums increasing, it may be wise to look at black box insurance to cut down the premium. For more information about telematics insurance click here.
To conclude, if you are deemed as unfit to drive there are plenty of options for you when it comes to travelling such as buses, taxis and community transport groups. Even better, when you reach the over-70’s category, you can receive free bus travel and rail concession with a Senior Railcard.
For more CarCliq guides click here