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What’s in store for HGV drivers after Christmas?

The Christmas celebration comes with a lot of activities that require the services of HGV drivers. From buyers going on a shopping spree to store managers trying to fill up their stock, the services of HGV drivers are always of great priority.

The increased demand for HGV drivers could cause shoppers to face shortages, including toys, clothes, and electrical goods during the Christmas period, due to the scarcity of suitably qualified drivers, who, in most cases, are unable to meet the increased demand for their services.

In this article, we will discuss what HGV drivers could expect this festive season, what is in store for them after Christmas, and how to better position themselves for the post-Christmas period.

The expected scarcity in the number of available HGV drivers this Christmas could result from a combination of factors, including the impact of the pandemic and the post-Brexit exodus of overseas drivers who had previously formed part of the driver pool in the UK.

In order to deal with the shortage of HGV drivers in the UK over the winter months, the Department for Transport permitted 5,000 temporary visas to international drivers to come and work in the UK for 3 months. However, what happens after Christmas when their visas are no longer valid?

The temporary visas are set to expire on 24th December so many HGV drivers wil be forced out and back to their home countries after Christmas. After coming here to help out the UK transport service and getting settled into a work routine, maybe with the intention of moving here for a longer term, a lot of drivers will once again be uprooted and have to return home, unless there is another U-turn by the Government. This is likely to cause a lot of stress and upset for overseas HGV drivers, especially travelling back to their home countries during the extremely busy festive period.

Also, the visas for overseas HGV drivers was already only a temporary measure to fix the crisis the UK has been facing over driver shortages. When the HGV drivers go back home to their countries, it is likely the UK will still have a major driver shortage and the DfT will have to revisit visas for drivers, potentially on a further extended term. In any case, a larger number of HGV drivers are facing a big change after Christmas and heading into the new year.