Know Your Rights : Importing a car

August 2014


I’m living in Ireland but I want to buy a second-hand car in the UK. What steps do I have to take when I bring the car to Ireland?


Within seven days of bringing the car to Ireland you must make an appointment to bring the car to your local National Car Testing Service (NCTS) centre in order to register it and pay Vehicle Registration Tax (VRT). See ncts.ie to book an appointment and for details of the documents you need to bring with you.

The car will be examined at the NCTS centre and the details will be used by Revenue to assess the amount of VRT payable, based on the value of the car. Revenue provides an online VRT Calculator that you can use to get an estimate of how much you will have to pay, see revenue.ie. You pay the VRT to the NCTS. You must complete the registration process within 30 days of the vehicle's arrival in Ireland.

You will get a receipt for the VRT paid, showing the new registration number for your car. You must display this number on your car within three days. You can buy registration number plates at the NCTS centre or at a motor factors.

You will also get Form RF100, which you will need when you pay motor tax. To pay motor tax, you will also need to insure the car and have your insurance details. You can pay motor tax online at motortax.ie or at the Motor Taxation Office of your local authority.

After you have paid the motor tax, the Vehicle Registration Certificate will be issued to you by the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport.

If the car is four years old or more it must also undergo the National Car Test immediately.

Further information is available from the Citizens Information Centre below.

Know Your Rights has been compiled by  Dungloe Citizens Information Service which provides a free and confidential service to the public. Tel: 0761075430 Address: Dungloe Public Services Centre, Gweedore Road.
Information is also available online at citizensinformation.ie and from the Citizens Information Phone Service, 0761 07 4000.