1. Driving licence rules and what you can tow

The rules on what you can tow are different depending on when you passed your driving test.

View your driving licence information to see if you’re allowed to tow.

Licences issued from 19 January 2013

If you passed your car driving test (category B) from 19 January 2013, you can tow:

  • small trailers weighing no more than 750kg
  • a trailer over 750kg as long as the combined weight of the trailer and towing car or van is no more than 3,500kg (3.5 tonnes) maximum authorised mass (MAM)

MAM is the limit on how much the vehicle can weigh when it’s loaded.

You have to pass the car and trailer driving test if you want to tow anything heavier.

Licences issued from 1 January 1997

If you passed your car driving test between 1 January 1997 and 18 January 2013, you can:

  • drive a car or van up to 3,500kg MAM towing a trailer of up to 750kg MAM
  • tow a trailer over 750kg MAM as long as the combined MAM of the trailer and towing vehicle is no more than 3,500kg

You have to pass the car and trailer driving test if you want to tow anything heavier.

Licences held before 1 January 1997

If you passed your car test before 1 January 1997 you’re usually allowed to drive a vehicle and trailer combination up to 8,250kg MAM. View your driving licence information to check.

You’re also allowed to drive a minibus with a trailer over 750kg MAM.

Towing heavier combinations

Follow these steps if you want to tow heavier combinations.

  1. Apply for provisional licence for a medium-sized lorry and trailer (category C1+E).

  2. Pass the lorry theory test.

  3. Pass the C1+E driving test.

You need to take extra Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) tests if driving the medium-sized lorry is the main part of your job.

Once you’ve done this you can drive vehicles and trailers with a combined weight of up to 12,000kg MAM.