If you’re like me, renewing your vehicle licence every year is that one task that slips to the back of your mind and is forgotten until two, maybe three days before your current documentation expires.
Renewing a vehicle licence is typically a simple, if inconvenient, process – a renewal notification gets delivered; you head off to the post office (or licencing department) with the necessary documentation (proof of residence, ID, cash) and you should be in and out in 30 minutes or so.
However, this year I had the great misfortune of having my driver’s licence and vehicle licence expire at exactly the same time, all while my nearest licencing department was effectively out of service due to robberies – and my renewal notifications were yet to be delivered.
Due to the licencing department shut down, no vehicle licence renewals could be processed, while only the first 100 people at the front of the line were being served each day.
My procrastination had put me in a tricky situation: I had three days before both licences expired, and few options available to get this done without having to take an entire day off work to hunt for a functional department.
While I queued at 5am at the licencing department to ensure I could be one of the 100 lucky few to get their driver’s licence renewed, I turned to FNB’s licence renewal feature through its Nav app to try sort out the vehicle licence situation.
The process was incredibly simple:
- You sign into the FNB app, and link the Nav to an existing banking profile.
- Register your car – which can be done manually, or by scanning the bar-code on a current, non-expired licence disk.
- Accept the terms and conditions (Licence has not expired, no outstanding fines, no summonses or warrants out for your arrest).
- Choose the account to pay from, and pay.
- Ten or so days later, your new vehicle licence will be delivered straight to your door.
I felt that the R199 handling and delivery fee was rather costly – but it beat having to drive around the city looking for a working traffic department, and dealing with the stress of just being in a government building.
Here is my brief review of using the service:
- Convenience: Driver’s licence renewal aside, I complete the entire vehicle licence renewal process from the comfort of my own home, in five minutes. There are a number of queuing services which offer similar benefits, but FNB’s system is automated, and you don’t have to interact with other people.
- Paperwork: One of the biggest chores with renewing vehicle licences is handling the paperwork – making sure you have the right forms, filling them in, getting proof of residence, etc. FNB has all the necessary information on hand to do this on your behalf.
- Price: FNB charges you R199 to use the renewal system, which isn’t cheap when added onto the already-costly renewal fee of R440. If you subscribe to the R95 per month On-road Protect bundle you can get the service for free. But then you’re still paying R95 per month.
- Time: Renewing your vehicle licence yourself typically takes 30 mins or so, and you get everything sorted on the day. Processing and delivery via FNB takes more than a week, so plan around that timeline. Because I left everything to the last minute, my vehicle licence had already expired by the time the new one arrived – but that’s on me.