Disabled parking permits allow disabled drivers and passengers to benefit from on-street parking close to where they want to go, as well as designated parking spaces in town and city centres.
Also known as "Blue Badges," the permits are only issued to individuals who prove to their local authority they suffer from a severe physical or mental impairment that significantly restricts their movement and means they need easier access to certain facilities.
While the Blue Badge scheme is recognised throughout the UK, the exact rules and application process differ slightly between England and Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland.
England, Wales and Scotland
Apply online for the disabled parking permit by checking your eligibility and filling out an application form that will be sent digitally to your local authority. You will need to register and provide your personal details and information about the medical condition or disability. The online application form is also available in Welsh.
Save your online application at regular intervals in case you lose your Internet signal or the website experiences technical problems.
Submit your application and wait to receive your Blue Badge and accompanying documentation. You can keep track of the status and progress of the application by logging in to your account.
Check if you qualify for the Blue Badge scheme in Northern Ireland by reading online one of the application guides or additional information about how the process works in the province.
Complete the digital application form by answering all questions about you and your disability.
Review your application to ensure all the information is correct and then submit the request.
Sign and date the paper copy of the application form that will be sent to you within three weeks of your online application. Include two passport photos that you must sign on the reverse and remember to include a cheque or Postal Order for £2 made out "Department for Regional Development." Do not send cash in case it goes missing in the post.
Contact the local issuing authority and request a paper application form to be sent to you via post if you are unable to apply online.
Always double-check where you can use the the blue badge as the scheme does not cover all roads, such as private avenues and roads at airports. While some council car parks may accept the permits, private car parks often state they are not valid.