Mobility Package – Operator’s License for Light Vehicle Operators

Effective from the 22nd May 2022 there will be an obligation for light vehicle operators to have an International Operators license to carry out any international transport which his done on the basis of hire & reward, this change was approved in the EU Mobility Package introduced in July 2020. 

One of the key objectives of this Mobility Package is to tighten regulation for both heavy and light transport vehicles, that is, transport carried out with goods transport vehicles with a gross vehicle weight (GVW) of between 2.5t and 3.5t. 

When the new rule comes into force, light transport vehicles must be covered by a Operators license, which enables them to make international trips between the countries of the European Union. 


It will be mandatory to have an Operators license issued by the relevant national authority for vehicles which have a GVW greater than 2.5 tons. 

In addition, and as is for HGV operators, at least one company representative to which the vehicles are operated (owned, rented or leased) has the necessary qualification and certification to operate the vehicles under the license. 

Having fulfilled these requirements, the responsible Traffic Commissioner (GB) or the Dfl (Northern Ireland) will process the Operator’s license, as well as the necessary copies for each vehicle. 

Exemptions – Who and which activities are exempt from the new Mobility Package Changes 

However, the Mobility Package leaves out of this obligation for any carriers who have already been authorized to carry out international transport with light vehicles for 10 years prior to the Package coming into force. In other words, those carriers who held an authorization in August 2010 will be exempt from proving compliance with these requirements. 

Nor do they need the community license, and, therefore, the following services do not require international transport authorization: 

  • Postal transport carried out under a universal service regime. 
  • Transportation of damaged vehicles. 
  • Transport of goods with a motor vehicle whose authorized total loaded weight, including trailers, is not greater than 2.5 tons. 
  • Transportation of medicines, medical devices and equipment, and other items necessary in cases of urgent aid or natural disasters. 
  • If you only move your own company goods, where there is no hire & reward for the transport services provided to the business.  
  • Freight transport under private service regime. That is to say: carried out with company vehicles, with company salaried drivers, without remuneration for transport, and to transport goods manufactured or acquired by the company. 

Which transport activities are covered under the new legislation? 

The transport operations that can be carried out with the community license are: 

  • Journeys which are made for hire & reward 
  • Journeys with a vehicle load when the point of departure and the point of destination are in two different member states, with or without transit through one or more member states or third countries. 
  • Loaded journeys of a vehicle with departure point in a member state and destination in a third country and vice versa, with or without transit through one or more member states or third countries. 
  • Loaded displacement of a vehicle between third countries, which crosses the territory of one or more member states in transit. 
  • Empty displacement related to all the aforementioned transports. 
  • Cabotage transport. 

This modification to the EU mobility package is an EU community regulation, for which the British Government has agreed to update and modify its own policy in relation to Operators licenses for vehicles with a GVW between 2.5t and 3.5t operating in the European Union.