How we're keeping our vehicles safe

In addition to good value, now more than ever, U-Drive and its team are focused on maintaining the highest vehicle standards we possibly can.  Every day we clean & disinfect hundreds of cars, vans, trucks, minibuses & specialist vehicles for our customers...

Unlike some of our competitors, we believe in complete transparency to ensure both you and our teams can be as safe as possible during this challenging time and into the future.  For more information, you can download our car and van cleanliness guides.

You can also find out more about our vehicles and what's changed in our branches, here.

Car guide (PDF)
Van guide (PDF)

Driving Licence

Each driver must produce their driving licence on collection of the vehicle.


Details of any endorsements/penalty points for people who hold a UK driving licence are now kept online and not on the driving licence or paper counterpart. Each driver will need to visit before arrival to create a licence check code which they must produce when they come in to collect the vehicle. The code is only valid for 21 days, can only be used once and is case sensitive, so please print or take a picture using a smart phone.


Alternatively, if you do not have access to a computer please bring your Driving Licence, National Insurance Number and identification, with this information you will be asked to access the Share My Driver Record website by means of a computer. There currently is no charge for this service.


If you are unable to do any of the above, you will be asked to give your permission verbally over the telephone to DVLA, so that they can disclose your driving licence information to us. This is a premium rate telephone service and there will be a charge of £10.20 inclusive of VAT per licence for choosing this option. Please note this service is only available Monday to Friday 8am to 7pm and Saturdays 8am to 2pm (not including Bank Holidays). We will be unable to hire to you if you select this option outside of their operating hours.


Drivers must meet the following minimum ages and driving experience to hire.



Between 25 and 75, having held a full driving licence for at least 1 year.


MPV’s, All Tippers, VW Kombi and 4x4’s

Between 25 and 75, having held a full driving licence for at least 3 years.


Light Commercial Vehicles

Between 23 and 75, having held a full driving licence for at least 1 year.


9 Seater Tourneo

Between 25 and 75, having held a full driving licence for at least 3 years.


17 Seater Minibus

Between 25 and 70, having held a full driving licence for at least 5 years.


7½ Ton Commercial Vehicles

Between 25 and 70, having held a full driving licence for at least 3 years.


Maximum age is the day of your 70th or 75th birthday.


For minibuses and 7½ Ton Commercial Vehicles, hirers must have passed their test prior to January 1997 or hold the relevant categories on their licence. Please check all endorsements with your local office when booking as some endorsements are not acceptable.


Licence issued in the European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) countries are treated equally. For ease of reference the Countries are listed below:


EU Countries
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and United Kingdom.


EEA Countries

Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.


Therefore, if you are from an EU/EEA country holding a valid community licence you can drive in line with the appropriate entitlement as per your driving licence.


It is a criminal offence to drive using a licence that is not valid in the UK.  In addition, if you do so, the insurance will be invalidated and you will be committing a further criminal offence of ‘driving without valid motor insurance’.


Non UK, EU, EEA Licences

Non UK, EU, EEA licences must be valid for the duration of the rental period. Should such foreign licences be in a foreign alphabet they must be accompanied by an International Driving Permit.

Penalty Points

As a general rule, up to 6 points within the past 3 years can be accepted, for offences such as speeding, parking or construction and use. If you have endorsements for Driving while under the influence of Drink or Drugs, driving with No Insurance, Careless Driving, Reckless Driving, Theft or Unauthorised Taking of a motor vehicle or if you have been banned from driving within the last 10 years, it is recommended that you contact your nearest U-Drive location to check your entitlement to hire. If you have been banned or have more than 6 points on your licence you may still be able to hire subject to conditions.


Similarly, please contact us if you have had any motor accidents within the last 5 years, whether at fault or not.


Each driver will be required to show their driving licence at the time of hire. If you do not have a photocard licence, then the older paper licence version must be accompanied with a passport or debit/credit card as additional proof of identification.


Each driver will also be required to show 2 additional documents with their name and personal address. Documents must be no older than 3 months’ acceptable documents include, Bank Statement, Credit Card Statement, Current Council Tax Bill, Utility Bill, Letting agreement or Proof of Home Ownership.


Please also refer to the FAQ headed: Driving Licence

Please contact your chosen U-Drive location if you envisage any difficulty with providing this identification or if you are hiring a vehicle to be taken outside of the UK.


If you unfortunately need to cancel your booking, please contact the branch you have booked from as soon as possible. We do not charge for cancellations however it may take at least 5 working days to refund any money due as a result of the policies operated by credit card providers.

European Travel

U-Drive vehicles may be taken outside of the UK with prior permission and the correct documentation being supplied. Our pricing structure includes:

  • Breakdown Cover
  • Green Card or equivalent
  • Hire Charges
  • Insurance
  • Generous Mileage Allowance
  • VE103B form


We also include the following European Travel Kits:

  • Carry Bag
  • Spare Bulbs and Fuses
  • First Aid Kit
  • High Viz Vest(s)
  • Warning Triangle(s)
  • Breathalyser(s)


It is the hirer's responsibility to check what documentation, equipment and additional requirements are required in the countries that you will be travelling in or through. U-Drive cannot be held responsible for any fines or penalties imposed.

Users of vans and other light goods vehicles weighing between 2.5 and 3.5 tonnes and which transport goods for hire or reward from the UK into, or through the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein, now need an International Operators’ Licence.  

Without the necessary licence, your business may be disrupted and you could also face enforcement action. The type of action will depend on the country where you are stopped but could include fines, impounding, or being asked to return to the UK.  

You may also need to make posting declarations for journeys to the EU:

If you’re transporting goods between two points in the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway for commercial purposes, (known as cabotage or cross trade), you must now make a “posting declaration”, which means registering the operator, driver, driver employment details, dates of travel, and the vehicle used. 

France has introduced a “clean air” scheme for some cities, known as the CRIT’Air. Vehicles are required to display a sticker or “vignettes” to show the emissions that the vehicle produces. The scheme is currently operating in Paris, Lyon, Genoble, Lille, Strasbourg, Toulouse, Chambery and Marseille. U-Drive can apply for the sticker on your behalf but must be given at least 7 days notice. An additional admin charge of £12.00 inclusive of VAT will apply.

Please note: The refundable deposit for any vehicle booking that includes European Travel increases to £220.


Useful Websites:

Additional Drivers

You can have as many additional drivers as you require, all drivers will be required to show their driving licences and a small charge will apply for each additional driver.


Additional drivers will be required to show appropriate Identification, details are contained within this FAQ's section.

Age and Driving Experience


Between 25 and 75, having held a full driving licence for at least 1 year.


MPV’s, All Tippers, VW Kombi and 4x4’s

Between 25 and 75, having held a full driving licence for at least 3 years.


Light Commercial Vehicles

Between 23 and 75, having held a full driving licence for at least 1 year.


9 Seater Tourneo

Between 25 and 75, having held a full driving licence for at least 3 years.


17 Seater Minibus

Between 25 and 70, having held a full driving licence for at least 5 years.


7½ Ton Commercial Vehicles

Between 25 and 70, having held a full driving licence for at least 3 years.


Maximum age is the day of your 70th or 75th birthday.

Collision Damage Waiver

Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) reduces the excess payable by the hirer in the event that the hired vehicle has been involved in a collision. This is a contractual waiver that must be taken at the start of the rental period rather than an insurance product. Typically, this will reduce the excess from £2,000 down to £125 - £75, depending on endorsements, driving experience, type of vehicle being hire and the intended use of the vehicle. The hirer is normally responsible for the excess if:

  • The accident is their fault.
  • There is no one to claim against, typically this will be as a result of the third party details not being obtained.
  • The other driver has no insurance.


Collision Damage Waiver does not cover:

  • All Glass, (excluding windscreen) and tyre damage.
  • Damage caused above windscreen height of a commercial vehicle.
  • Damage caused to the vehicle when not on the public highway.
  • Theft of the vehicle, where the original keys cannot be returned.
  • Acts of Vandalism.
  • Malicious Acts.
  • Damage caused by the negligence of the hirer (for example, racing or driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs).
  • If the terms and conditions of the rental agreement are breached.

What do I do if I have an Accident?

If you are involved in an accident, please call the Accident Helpline on 0333 207 9672 immediately.


Complete the details on the “bump” card provided at the commencement of hire and exchange details with this third party. Do not admit liability for any accident.

What do I do if I Breakdown?

In the unlikely event of a breakdown please call the Breakdown Helpline on 0800 975 8334 quoting the membership number and vehicle registration as shown on your rental contract.


Driver induced faults may not be covered and could therefore be chargeable. These may include, but are not limited to:

  • Incorrect Fuel Used
  • Wheel change
  • Out of fuel
  • Locked out or Lost/broken key
  • Road Traffic Accident Recovery (Subject to fault)


We also provide breakdown cover for vehicles going off the UK mainland. Every effort will be made to get you back on the road as soon as possible.

Payments and Deposits

U-Drive currently accepts debit card and credit card payment for vehicle hire and deposits. We are unable to accept American Express or Diners Club Cards or cash at this time.


Please be aware when paying your deposit by debit or credit card, some card and merchant providers - as well as some banks - can take up to 5 days to refund the money to your account.

Fines and Penalty Charge Notices

If you get caught speeding, illegally parking, failing to pay the London Congestion Charge or any other civil or criminal traffic offence whilst driving one or our vehicles, your details will be forwarded to the enforcing authority, plus we will charge you an administration fee of £35 plus VAT for each and every occurrence.


Customers are required to return vehicles with the same amount of fuel as when they collected the hire vehicle. If a vehicle is returned with less fuel a charge will be applied, current charges per litre are displayed in the rental office. Please note that our charges are higher than the forecourt prices.


Refunds will not be given for vehicles returned with excess fuel.

Congestion Charge Zone - London (CCZ)

The Congestion Charge is an £11.50 daily charge for driving a vehicle within the charging zone between 07:00 and 18:00, Monday to Friday.

Ultra Low Emission Zone - London (ULEZ)

To help improve air quality in London, an Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) now operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, every day of the year within the same area of central London as the Congestion Charge. Most vehicles, including cars and vans, need to meet the ULEZ emissions standards or their drivers must pay a daily charge to drive within the zone.


If you inform U-Drive in advance that you will be entering the ULEZ area, you will be supplied with a rental vehicle that meets the ULEZ emissions standard.

Clean Air Zones

Various Clean Air Zones are being introduced across England so that we can all enjoy cleaner, healthier air.  While the majority of our vehicle fleet are exempt from charging, there will be some vehicles, such as HGVs, are liable to a charge.

For details of charges, exemptions & discounts, please visit

Make sure you let us know if you plan to enter a CAZ so our team can arrange for you to have a compliant vehicle, where possible.

Early Returns

Refunds for early returns will only be given if we have received at least 24 hours notice before the vehicle is returned. Deposits will be refunded when the vehicle is returned in the same state as it was let out.

Out of Hours Returns

Some locations have facilities for vehicles to be returned outside of normal trading hours, please check at time of booking. In the event that this service is available and for the avoidance of any doubt, the hirer remains responsible for the vehicle until it is checked in by a member of staff on the next working day.

Driving an Electric Car

There are plenty of charging points available across the UK, and you can use services like POD PointEcotricityCharge Your CarBP Chargemaster and others without any issues and your U-Drive electric vehicle (EV) is compatible with them all. We recommend POD Point if you don’t already have an EV charging account, as they offer free sign-ups and no deposits.

Don’t worry - we’ll make sure there’s at least 80% charge when you collect your vehicle.

Depending on where you are depends on whether you’ll have to pay to charge your EV or whether you can charge it for free. Commonly, supermarkets, fast food restaurant chains and town/city centre shopping centre car parks offer free charging while you shop, as well as at thousands of workplaces, offices and at home too.

We recommend using to find your nearest public charging locations, for free.

How to recharge your electric car;

1. Turn off the vehicle and open the vehicle port cover
You’ll need to make sure the car is in park (‘P’) first. You can do this by applying the parking brake and pressing the P button on the gear stick. You can find the ‘vehicle port cover door’ button (as shown left) to the right of the steering wheel.

 2. Connect the charging cable to the vehicle
Plug the larger of the two plug ends into the vehicle charging port (orange cap on the right-hand side). Once you’ve plugged it into the car it will lock, so don’t pull it once you’ve inserted it.

 3. Connect the charging cable to the charging post
Once the charging post is ready to go it will indicate that it is time to plug in the other end of the cable. You will hear the LEAF beep a couple of times to indicate that it is charging.

4. When you’re ready to go again
As soon as the charge is complete, or you’re ready to go, the charging point will indicate when it is time to remove the cable from the point. Once you have removed the cable from the charging point, press the button you used at the beginning (shown left) before you remove the cable from the car and stow it back in the vehicle.

For more information about Electric Vehicle click the PDF link below: