Frequently asked questions

Where are Scottish Low Emission Zones (LEZs) and when will they be enforced?

LEZs have been formally introduced to all four cities (Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow) and local grace periods now apply until enforcement begins. Enforcement in Glasgow will be from 1 June 2023 (with an additional year for residents within the zone), while enforcement in Dundee will begin on 30 May 2024. Enforcement in Aberdeen and Edinburgh will begin 1 June 2024.

Do LEZs ban vehicles from city centres?

The aim of LEZs is not to ban all vehicles, but rather to stop the most polluting from entering the zone, to protect public health and to encourage the switch to compliant vehicles. The minimum emission standards (Euro category) for Scottish LEZs is Euro 6 for diesel cars and vans (generally vehicles registered from September 2015) and Euro 4 for petrol cars and vans (generally vehicles registered from 2006*). You can check your vehicle here.

Can I pre-pay or register to enter a LEZ?

No. LEZs will be enforced by Penalty Charge Notice (PCN), there will be no registration facility or the option for pre-payment.  When a non-compliant vehicle is detected a PCN is issued to the registered keeper of that vehicle. 

I don’t pay Vehicle Excise Duty (VED), is my vehicle LEZ compliant?

The amount you pay in Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) will vary according to the amount Carbon Dioxide (CO2 ) emitted by your vehicle. However, LEZs focus on improving air quality by reducing concentrations of the harmful pollutants Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) and Particulate Matter (PM).

Your vehicle will still need to meet LEZ vehicle emission standards (Euro categories). You can check your vehicle here.

Is my vehicle suitable for retrofitting?

The LEZ Retrofit Fund is available to microbusiness and sole traders operating within a 20km radius of Scotland’s four LEZs. Further details on the fund can be found here.

What funding support is available?

Full details on the support available and eligibility criteria can be found here.

My vehicle’s number plate has changed and now shows as non-compliant.

If you have changed the registration plate of your compliant vehicle and received a PCN, or disagree with the new result from the Vehicle Checker, your DVLA vehicle records may need to be updated.

If you have received a PCN, the issuing local authority will be able to escalate your case to the DVLA whilst processing your appeal. Information on appealing will be displayed on the PCN issued to you. Enforcement and administration of Low Emission Zones are conducted by the Local Authority. As such, PCNs and their appeals are handled by the issuing Local Authority, not Transport Scotland.

If you have not received a PCN, but disagree with the Vehicle Checker result, we would request that you provide the following information to so we may escalate your case to DVLA for investigation:

  • Full Name
  • Address
  • Previous name(s) and/or address(es), if appropriate
  • Telephone number
  • Email address
  • Vehicle Registration Number (VRN), make, model and colour of the vehicle in question.

For further information on how we process your data, please see our privacy policy.

Who is exempt from LEZ requirements?

Some categories of vehicles will be exempt from LEZ requirements. These can be found here.

I have a classic car - will I receive a penalty charge for entering the LEZ?

There is an exemption for vehicles of historic interest, which would apply if a vehicle was manufactured or registered under the Vehicle Excise and Registration Act 1994 for the first time at least 30 years ago, and the vehicle is no longer in production and has not been changed from its original state. You will not be required to apply for an exemption if your vehicle meets these requirements, the city’s LEZ enforcement system will automatically register vehicles of historic interest as exempt if you drive within a LEZ.

Will motorbikes/mopeds be included in LEZ restrictions?

Motorbikes and mopeds are not included in the current LEZ schemes and no restrictions will apply.

I have a foreign vehicle; do I need to register my vehicle?

Foreign vehicles do not need to be registered with LEZ Authorities. For non-UK registered vehicles your vehicle must be LEZ compliant to drive in the LEZ. Please contact your national vehicle authorities to confirm compliance status before your journey.

Are electric vehicles included within restrictions?

No, fully electric vehicles will not be subject to any restrictions. However, hybrids will still be required to meet minimum emissions standards. If you are unsure, you can check your vehicle here.

My car has Eco Start/Stop technology /AdBlue/Bluedef/ BlueTech, does this make it LEZ compliant?

While Eco Stop/Start or exhaust fluids (such as AdBlue, Bluedef or BlueTec) may help to reduce emissions, they do not confirm a car’s compliance with LEZs. Please check your vehicle's registration here.

Do I need to display any proof of compliance on my vehicle?

No. Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras are linked to local and national vehicle licencing databases, to monitor all vehicles driving in a LEZ. They will detect vehicles which do not comply with the emission standards.

I am a carer. Am I exempt from LEZ restrictions?

There are no specific exemptions for carers or other relevant groups, such as third-sector organisations or healthcare workers. However, if a Blue Badge holder is a passenger in the vehicle, they can apply a One-Day Exemption to your vehicle. For more information, see our Blue Badge Exemption page here.

I am a carer who will be picking up a Blue Badge holder who lives inside a LEZ. Will the exemption cover my journey to collect them?

One-Day Exemptions are valid for the entire day selected by the Blue Badge holder. This means you will not receive a Penalty Charge Notice for driving in a Scottish LEZ on the selected date. For more information, see our Blue Badge Exemption page here.

I am a carer who will be visiting a Blue Badge holder in a LEZ, but not giving them a lift. Will I be exempt?

No, LEZ Blue Badge Exemptions are for when a Blue Badge holder is traveling in the vehicle, but alternative transport methods are available.

Note that Scottish LEZs are less than 1 mile square therefore the centre of each LEZ can be reached by a relatively short walk from the boundary.

If access by car is required, you can switch to an alternative, low polluting vehicle. This need not be an expensive brand new or electric vehicle as most petrol cars registered after 2006 are LEZ compliant. You can check if a vehicle is LEZ compliant using our online Vehicle Checker.

Are there any other exemptions available to me?

Each local authority can choose to offer a local time limited exemption for their LEZ. More information on each local authority’s exemptions may be found on their website.

For further information, please contact the relevant local authority. Their email can be found here.

I am a Blue Badge holder. What do I need to do to get ready for LEZs?

All vehicles travelling with a Blue Badge holder are exempt from Scottish LEZ requirements. You can find further information on how to register a vehicle for an exemption here.

I already have a Disability Road Tax Class exemption – do I need to apply for an LEZ exemption as well?

If your vehicle already receives a Disability Road Tax Class exemption, this will be picked up by local authority ANPR cameras and there is no need to register your vehicle – for more info click here.

I’m a Blue Badge holder and I have been wrongly sent a Penalty Charge Notice – what do I do?

Administration and enforcement of LEZs is conducted by local authorities. For any issues relating to PCNs, please contact the relevant local authority.