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How To Get A C1 Licence For Motorhome

If you dream of driving motorhomes on the open road, your standard driving licence may not be enough. Obtaining a C1 licence is essential for driving a large motorhome.

There are specific requirements for drivers that want to drive motorhomes or any vehicle in a particular size category. This article covers the entire process of getting your C1 licence to ensure you can drive your motorhome legally.

What Is A C1 Licence, And Why Do You Need It?

What Is A C1 Licence And Why Do You Need It?

A C1 licence is a type of driving licence that permits you to drive vehicles with a maximum load weight of 3,500kg to 7,500kg.

In the UK, you can typically drive a vehicle weighing around 3,500kg with your standard driving licence (Category B).

There is an exception for any driver that passed their driving test (obtained their current licence) before 1 January 1997. They don’t need to get a C1 licence. This is because a pre -97 car licence had the C1 entitlement listed. But keeping this licence means you need to pass the D4, a medical and vision assessment to ensure you can drive a vehicle safely.

There are a lot of motorhomes that are under the weight category of 3,500kg. If you want to drive larger motorhomes, you need to get a C1 licence, which involves an additional driving test.

C1 vs C Driving Licence

Apply For A C1 Licence

C1 vs C Driving Licence

The C1 category licence is an LGV licence that lets you drive large vehicles less than the MAM 7,500kg limit. For drivers under 44, you have to renew your C1 licence after five years. While drivers above 44 need to renew yearly.

Also, before it is issued initially, you are required to submit an examination from an optician and a general health examination from a GP.

The C category licence lets you drive vehicles that weigh over 3,500kg and trailers of up to 750kg. Generally, it is issued for five years, after which you need to follow the standard renewal procedure.

How To Get A C1 Licence For A Motorhome?

To enjoy the experience of driving a large motorhome to places you like, you must start by applying for a C1 licence and then passing the test. It is easy to obtain if you know all the steps.

Make Sure That You Are Eligible (Requirements)

There are some things you need to possess and requirements you must meet to apply for a C1 category licence. As a driver looking to obtain a C1 licence, these are the requirements;

  • You have to be 18 years of age or older.
  • You need to have a Category B driving licence.

Undergo Medical Assessment

The medical standard for a class B driving licence is not the same as for a C1 category licence. If you want a C1 licence, you need to undergo a separate assessment to be sure that you comply with the medical standards.

This assessment will need to be done by a doctor. You can get a D4 DVLA form from most post offices or simply order it online. There are two parts of the form to fill in – a medical assessment and a vision assessment.

You can either arrange for a private doctor or your local GP. You will be asked questions about your medical history and if any underlying medical conditions might impair you as a driver. An eyesight test is included in the physical assessment.

If your doctor can’t complete the medical history part of the D4 form associated with vision, ask an optometrist or optician to fill it in.

Apply For A C1 Licence

Next up is to get a provisional licence after you are done with your medical. This licence will mean that you are entitled to be the driver of a 7,500kg vehicle.

Applying for a provisional C1 licence involves filling out a D2 form, which you can get from post offices or the DVLA site.

You are expected to send the D4 and D2 forms to the DVLA; you will also need to send in your current licence. The provisional entitlement will then be added to your licence before the DVLA returns it.

After you have obtained your provisional licence, you are eligible to start training to drive 7,500lg lorries or other vehicles in the HGV class. You will need the help of a driving expert that has held a full CE, C, C1E, or C1 licence for up to three years. Their driving licence must have been issued after 1 January 1997.

Book Your Theory Test

If you want to apply and get your C1 licence, three theory tests have to be completed. The three tests you have to pass are a case study, a hazard perception test, and a multiple-choice test.

The case study takes about 75 minutes to complete. It contains seven case studies. You will also be given about 15 minutes to practice and get used to everything. Finally, you will be asked 50 questions; a score of 40 is required to pass.

You will also need to pass the hazard perception test, which will see you watch 19 different one-minute clips based on hazards. There will be one hazard in each clip, except for one particular clip that has two hazards. So, your aim is to point out when there is a developing hazard. To pass this section, you need to score 67 points out of 100.

The multiple-choice test contains 100 questions about driving larger motorhomes and vehicles safely. You need to get 85 points out of 100 to pass.

The law states that before you take your test in Northern Ireland, you need to have lived there at least five months in the last year. If you wish to take the test in Scotland, Wales, Or England, you must have lived there for up to 185 days in the last year.

Arrange a DVLA theory test in Northern Ireland

Arrange a DVLA theory test in Scotland, Wales, or England

Book Your Practical Test

The final section in your journey to be able to drive larger motorhomes and HGV vehicles involves booking a practical test. Booking your practical test will cost around £115 and comes in two different parts.

The first part assesses your driving and safety skills. Then comes a practical demonstration portion to prove you can load and unload the vehicle properly and make emergency decisions if needed.

The first part can be passed with 15 minor faults or fewer, but make sure you don’t make any major faults.

Arrange a driving test in Northern Ireland

Arrange a driving test in Scotland, Wales, or England

How Long Does A C1 Licence Last?

Based on when the licence is issued and the driver’s age, a C1 category licence can last anything from one year to five years.

Age: 44 and under

For drivers aged 44 and below that have passed their driving test and obtained a C1 category licence, they can keep driving their vehicle with the current licence for up to five years before needing to renew it.

Age: over 44

Drivers that are over 44 and have already obtained a C1 category licence need to renew their licence annually.

Age: over 70

Drivers that got their regular driving licence before 1 January 1997 automatically received a C1 category licence.

However, a licence is taken away when a driver gets to 70 and needs to be renewed. In this case, a D4 medical and vision assessment form will need to be sent to the DVLA, which will see that the license is renewed for an additional three years.

What Other Vehicles Can You Drive With A C1 Licence?

What Other Vehicles Can You Drive With A C1 License?

As stated above, you can drive vehicles that weigh up to 7,500kg with your C1 licence. With a C1 category licence, you can drive:

  • Motorized equipment: You will be able to drive motorized equipment with a weight of up to 7,500kg.
  • Trailer: You can tow a trailer with a MAM of 750kg.
  • Light lorry: You are entitled to drive light lorries that don’t weigh more than 7,500kg.

Do You Need Any Special Training To Pass All Exams?

You don’t necessarily need access to any form of special training to get your C1 licence. We recommend you hire a qualified trainer to help with training if you lack confidence in your driving skills or have no previous experience. You should learn from someone experienced to make the exams easier.

You can read information online or check to see if there are offers for any driving courses. Licences are not easy to obtain but they come with many advantages.



Do you dream of driving a motorhome campervan, lorry, or other large vehicles? Then you should remember that you need to hold a C1 licence.

Whether you are planning to camp out during a holiday or want to enjoy an exciting road trip, it is definitely more fun when you are in a C1 category B motorhome.

After you pick up your C1 licence, it opens up plenty of opportunities for road trips, allowing you to explore the UK with family or a group of friends.

Or if you want to work a delivery job for local companies, getting this licence is your first step, as they typically use 7,500kg vans for deliveries.


What is the cost of a C1 licence?

The cost of obtaining a C1 licence is around £150-£200. Everything is included with this fee ranging from your driving test to getting your licence.

Do I need a medical for a C1 licence?

As with a standard licence, if you want to add the C1 category to your licence, there are legal requirements and paperwork to be completed, including the D4 medical assessment form.

If you passed your driving test before 1 January 1997, you still need to complete the D4 form once you reach 70 years of age. You can use a private doctor or your local GP for the medical.

How long is the C1 theory test?

The C1 theory test consists of 100 multiple-choice questions. You will receive instructions on how to do the test and guidance on the practical test to familiarise you with the screens and controls. You will have 1hr and 55 minutes to finish it.

Do I need to do a theory test for C1?

Anyone interested in getting a C1 category licence must pass the three theory tests. You need to score 85 out of 100 to pass.

How long does it take to receive your C1 licence?

After completing and passing the practical test, you will need to wait about 10 to 15 days to receive your new C1 driving licence number. Then you can drive your motorhome!

17 thoughts on “How To Get A C1 Licence For Motorhome

  1. I know this if off topic but I’m looking into starting my own weblog and was wondering what all is needed to get set up? I’m assuming having a blog like yours would cost a pretty penny? I’m not very internet savvy so I’m not 100 certain. Any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

    1. Writing engaging content which will make people stay to read is most of the battle. Building a starter site through a site building tool is pretty easy these days. The site will grow and evolve, doesn’t need to be magical on day one. With time, effort and well written content; you will make it!

  2. Review the cost of the C1 licence, with that price indicated, you will cover only the medical tests. I wish that was the real cost!!

  3. More like £200-£1500 and several months of waiting doing nothing. Due to waiting for medical. Then waiting for provisional. Then booking and waiting for theory tests. Then practical training and then more waiting for actual test. Oh then more waiting for you actual licence, once you pass. Boy what a total ball ache!

    1. Agreed, not easy for most people. I only know of one customer out of 3,000+ since I’ve been here who has started from scratch and got their C1 purely to drive a motorhome over 3500kg. Most people are just researching how to get their entitlement back

  4. I think I know what’s needed to to enable me to continue driving my Autotrail Mohican Motorhome beyond my upcoming 70th birthday, but need to be sure.

    So although I don’t need to get a C1 licence (because I have a pre -97 car licence),
    to keep my current (or a replacement) licence, I need to:
    have a medical and vision assessment by my GP
    arrange to take and pass the theory tests that are going to cost me at least £150 ???!
    complete and send the D4 form to DVLA
    Is that correct and complete?
    Many thanks!

    1. That sounds about right. There are companies which specialise in help people such as yourself get through the medical and keep your entitlement. At least for the first renewal, it’s probably best to use a professioanl company to help you

  5. Hi there I drive 70 seater coaches for a living for the past 15 years, yet am I right in saying I need to undergo another set of theories and a practical test in order to drive my 6 berth camper? In what world does that make sense? Thanks

    1. Hi Craig, If you already have C1 or higher entitlement then you will not need to do anything in order to drive a motorhome up to the maximum weight your entitlement allows. When you hit 70 years old you will lose your entitlements above ‘B’ automatically. If you already have the entitlement, you should only need to do a medical to keep them.

  6. Craig Thorn,

    If you hold a D licence for buses/coaches

    You would indeed need to get medical for a C1 vehicle (not all motor homes are above 3.5tonnes)

    If you get your medical it would usually cover both bus and hgv (all Catagory C vehicles)

    And yes a separate tests are required if you don’t have a C1 on your licence.

    Theory/ hazard tests plus 3a & 3b

    Contact me if you or anyone needs more information

  7. Hi,
    Having held a full driving licence since 1963, and licences since those days to drive double deckers buses, coaches and articulated vehicles, all of which I did not renew at the age of 70yrs, I now, at 78yrs have a licence that covers me for groups AM, A, B1, B, and BE.
    For me to obtain a C1 licence would I only have to send in the D4 Medical Form ???
    Or would I have to retake all the tests again???.

    1. I think you will only need to take the medical to get your entitlement back. There are companies which specialise in this who will be better to advise you.

    2. Hi Peter, did you get an answer for your question? I have let my C1 lapse at 70 years of age but now I want to add it back on my licence. Getting the D4 form filled in will be OK but will this be enough to get the C1 added back?

  8. My husband has just reached 70, he had C1 on his licence prior to his 70th. He had to have doctor medical assessment, and an optician’s medical assessment. He paid £100 for the doctor and we were lucky the optician filled his in for free. You do not need to take further driving tests if you held your licence before 1997. He has just received his licence after waiting 2 months so it’s not a quick fix. Hope this helps

    1. Thanks for adding your experience here. A lot of people are looking for help on this subject

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