MOT test centres will remain open during the third national lockdown, as announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson on January 4th. The new lockdown restrictions are stricter than previously, but similar to the first instance of lockdown in March 2020.

However, unlike last year when MOT test centres were forced to close their doors, the Government has permitted them to stay open. Last time drivers were granted a six-month MOT exemption from March 30, 2020 ending in August 2020, with all cars, motorcycles or vans due an MOT test from August 1st now required to get a test certificate.

Garages "learned from their experiences from the first time around and have strict procedures in place that have enabled them to stay open for business," said Chris Crow, Fleet Assist's head of network. This allowed MOT test sites remained opened during the second lockdown last year, he explained.

Even though they were allowed to stay open, people flocked to book MOT and service appointments, inundating the centres with bookings.

During this third UK lockdown, vehicle hire and service maintenance and repair (SMR) services will also remain open, as well as petrol stations, motorway service areas, car parks, automatic (but not manual) car washes, bicycle shops, and taxi services.

However, driving tests and lessons and theory tests have been suspended from January 5th, until the restrictions are lifted. People affected by this will be contacted by email about rescheduling. Information is available on