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Short-term ECMT permits: applications open for journeys in 2021

16 Feb 2021

The Trade and Cooperation Agreement between the UK and EU allows for a UK haulier to undertake unlimited bilateral (point-to-point) journeys to and from the EU, and unlimited transit journeys through the EU to a non-EU country (though a permit may be required for your final destination).

It also allows for two additional movements in the EU, (cross-trade* or cabotage**) following a laden journey*** from the UK, with a maximum of one cabotage movement.


For Northern Ireland operators, both additional movements may be cabotage movements in Ireland, provided they follow a laden journey*** from Northern Ireland, and are performed within 7 days.


DfT urge you to check whether your journeys are covered by Trade and Cooperation Agreement and consider whether you need a short-term (30-day) permit for journeys in 2021.


Additional cross trade jobs in the EU

You need an ECMT permit if you want to carry out a third cross-trade job. The ECMT permit will let you carry out 3 cross-trade jobs between any ECMT country.


Cross-trade jobs between the EU and non-EU countries

You need an ECMT permit if you want to carry out a cross-trade job between the EU and a non-EU country. The non-EU country must be an ECMT member country.


How to apply

To apply for a short-term permit, please email

You will need to specify a start date for any permits requested and you may be asked to provide evidence of previous trips or future contracts.


Further information to help you plan your journey.

*Cross-trade is moving goods between two EU member states, e.g. taking a load from Paris to   


**Cabotage is moving goods between two points within 1 EU member state, e.g. from Paris to Lille.

***A laden journey is a journey where a haulier is moving goods.


Further information: