All you need to know about the Ulez vehicle scrapping scheme – how it works and check if you’re eligible

  • london
  • March 24, 2023
  • Comments Off on All you need to know about the Ulez vehicle scrapping scheme – how it works and check if you’re eligible
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The Ultra Low Emission Zone (Ulez) is expanding to cover the whole of London this summer – meaning many drivers will face extra charges, on top of the cost of living crisis.

From August 29, 2023, almost 700,000 car drivers will have to pay the £12.50 daily charge for driving in the zone, according to analysis by the RAC.

Some may be forced to sell or scrap their vehicles – so the Mayor of London has launched a ‘scrappage scheme’ offering financial help to retrofit or scrap the highest polluting cars for certain groups.

So what is the scheme, who is eligible and how does it work?

Here’s what you need to know.

What is the Ulez scrappage scheme?

The £110m scrappage scheme is live now. It was launched by Sadiq Khan to help fight air pollution in London, and to offer help to those affected by the upcoming Ulez expansion.

It provides grants to scrap or retrofit vehicles that do not meet the emissions standards – including cars, motorbikes, vans and minibuses.

Most diesel cars registered before September 2015 and petrol cars registered prior to January 2006 are likely to have to pay the Ulez daily charge if driven in the zone.

The scrappage scheme is aimed at ‘Londoners on certain low income or disability benefits, and eligible micro businesses (with up to 10 employees), sole traders and charities with a registered address in the city’.

How does the Ulez scrappage scheme work?

The first step is to find out if your vehicle meets the Ulez emissions standards – if it does, you won’t have to pay the £12.50 charge to drive in the zone.

You can do that by entering the details on the Ulez website.

If your vehicle doesn’t meet them, the next step is to see if you’re eligible for a grant.

Who is eligible for the scrappage scheme?

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To be eligible for the car and motorbike scheme (including wheelchair-accessible vans) you will need to

Live within one of the 32 London boroughs or the City of London, not have received a grant under the previous Ulez scrappage scheme, and be on one or more of the following benefits:

You’ll also need to show proof of ID (such as a driving licence), proof of address and the vehicle’s insurance details and log book.

To be eligible for the van and minibus scheme, you need to be self-employed and within the 32 London boroughs or the City of London, run a business with 10 employees or fewer (up to £632,000 turnover) or be a charity registered within the London area.

The vehicle must be a light van (up to and including 3.5 tonnes gross vehicle weight (GVW) or minibus (up to and including 5 tonnes GVW)

How much will I get?

Once your application has been approved and you have scrapped your vehicle (which has to be done at an approved centre) or retrofitted it (at an approved fitter) you have to upload evidence, such as a Certificate of Destruction.

For cars, motorcycles and wheelchair accessible cars or vans there are eight grant payment options:

  • Scrap a car – £2,000
  • Scrap a car – £1,600 plus one adult-rate Annual Bus & Tram Pass
  • Scrap a car – £1,200 plus two adult-rate Annual Bus & Tram Passes
  • Scrap a motorcycle – £1,000 
  • Scrap a motorcycle – £600 plus one adult-rate Annual Bus & Tram Pass
  • Scrap a motorcycle – £200 plus two adult-rate Annual Bus & Tram Passes
  • Scrap a wheelchair accessible vehicle (car or van) – £5,000
  • Retrofit a wheelchair accessible vehicle (van only) – £5,000

Note that choosing the Annual Bus & Tram Passes is worth more than the grant alone – for example, scrapping a car and receiving one pass is worth over £2,500.

For vans and minibuses, there are six options:

  • Scrap a van – £5,000
  • Scrap a minibus – £7,000
  • Retrofit a van – £5,000
  • Retrofit a minibus – £5,000
  • Scrap a van and replace with an electric van – £7,500
  • Scrap a minibus and replace with an electric minibus – £9,500

How do I apply?

You need to apply to both schemes online, on the Tfl website – there are separate ones for motorbikes and cars, and vans.

The first step is to create an account – then just follow the on-screen instructions.


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