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Driving and buying a car in Cyprus

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Driving and buying a car in Cyprus

Once you have purchased a property lots of our clients decide to buy a motor vehicle. In Cyprus we drive on the left like in the U.K. and Japan. Motor vehicles are therefore right hand drive. To many driving on the left seems completely unnatural but you will be amazed how quickly you will adapt if you are used to driving on the right. In both cases of course the driver’s side is towards the center of the road and within an hour or two you will be wondering what all the fuss was about.

To drive or purchase a car in Cyprus and transfer the deed in your name you need a valid license from your home country and a certificate of motor insurance. You do not need to have a residency permit before you purchase a motor vehicle. Insurance can be arranged on your UK or Russian driving license.

Compared to other countries Car Insurance in Cyprus is cheap. The main contributing factor is low level of car theft, being an island helps! Normally you can expect to pay under 300 Euro per year for fully comprehensive insurance for two experienced drivers on a BMW 3 Series.

If you move to Cyprus for permanent living and hold a valid Russian license you may consider exchanging it for a Cypriot driver’s license. This can be done very easily without sitting a driving test. Request a letter of confirmation from your hometown police station in Russia that you hold a valid driving license; this letter must then be certified by the Russian Embassy here in Cyprus for around 100 Euros. Present the certified letter, your driver’s license, Residency Permit, passport and 2 passport size photos to the Department of Road Transport and you will be issued a Cypriot driver’s license.

There are many car dealers in Cyprus, but for a better range of vehicles we would recommend to go shopping for a car in Limassol. Unlike property which is much more expensive in Limassol cars on the whole can be a little bit cheaper. This potential saving must of course be balanced against the difficulty in obtaining warranty repairs if something goes wrong.

Road Tax rates prior to 1st January 2014 are listed below

Engine Capacity (cc) Up to 1450 1451 – 1650 1651 – 2050 2051 – 2250 2251 – 2650 2651 and more
€ per cc
€0.11960 €0.14523 €0.19649 €0.19649
Cost will be in the range
Private Car
€10 - 62 €87 - 99 €198 - 246 €297 - 326 €443 - 521 €521  +
Van €10 - 62 €87 - 99 €198 - 246 €297 - 299 €299 €299
Double Cab
(Discount 50%)
€10 - 27 €39 - 44 €89 - 111 €133 - 147 €198 - 234 €234 - 299

Motorcycles between 1 and 1450 cc are charged €0.04272 per cc and will be in the range €10 - €62.

Any reductions due, including discounts for CO2 are outlined here

Cars registered after 1st January 2014 follow C02 emission level; the tables for Road Tax calculation can be viewed here

Instead of waiting in long queues at the department of transport to pay for road tax you can now pay with JJC Smart online payments:

Registration on JCC is easy – all you need when making the payment is your insurance certificate, passport and logbook. JCC also excepts payments for other services, but hopefully you will not need them for the payment of traffic fines! Although you are issued with a “tax disk” you should not display it on the windscreen, but keep it in your glove box, otherwise you could be fined for displaying the tax disk (police and employees from the Customs and Revenue can check the background data electronically).

Another tip concerns the “tax disc”. Although you are issued with a “tax disc” you should not display it on the windscreen, but rather keep it in your glove box, otherwise you could be fined for displaying the tax disc (police and employees from the Customs and Revenue can check the background data electronically). Or alternatively head down to one of the excellent Citizen Service Centers found in all the major towns.

Note: You can see that "double cabin" pick-up trucks enjoy a 50% discount on road tax. This and the lack of duty at the moment of purchase go some way to explaining their popularity in Cyprus.

Cars Imported from the UK and Japan are popular on the roads of Cyprus, it must however be noted that Duty is payable on imports in Cyprus unless you intend to retire here. Then you can bring in or purchase a Duty Free car. Rates of duty can be viewed here.

Whatever you decide, enjoy exploring beautiful Cyprus. Drive safely!

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