Cyprus Mail

Why bother with the ME3?

letters 1 grammata

Accepting bothersome bureaucracy is a worldwide challenge not restricted to Cyprus, may I ask the above question and refer readers to the possibility that the ME3 “yellow slip” is less than useful?

I went through a lot of effort to get the ME1. Then, after Brexit, we were told to get an ME3.

Now, I need to renew my Cypriot driving licence and, in the eyes of the Cypriot bureaucrats, I am age disadvantaged and am required to have a medical. I was directed to the Citizens Service office. There, I was given the medical form and the application form – both in Greek.

I was told that the staff would assist me in completing the application form but I also needed three utility bills showing I was a Cyprus resident.

Apologies. Getting a bit lost now. I said I had a ME3. No, insufficient. Citizens Service need proof of residency by three utility bills. I explained that the ME3 was proof but got nowhere. I was told that with an ME3 I could come and go as I pleased. I tried to explain that three utility bills hardly restricted my residency but, as usual, the exchange became heated.

I was then told to bring both the ME3 AND the utility bills.

I have an appointment only visit and will bring my Gesy membership, UK passport, GCE school certs, ME1, ME3, expiring Cyprus licence, letter of ref from my Dad (now deceased), you know, just to be sure.

Readers will get the point. Why bother with an ME3?

I am seriously thinking of doing what so many others do. Pretend to be in the UK when in Cyprus, pretend to be in Cyprus when in the UK, pay no taxes in either (I pay Cyprus), re-invoke my UK driver licence while pretending to be in the UK (no age limit, no medical) and when offering it to Cyprus cops am waved of as a tourist. Oh, and I can re-invoke my EHIC to get free medical attention when in the UK and Cyprus?

Anyway, I am a goody/goody and will do what is correct for Cyprus. At times though, I do despair.

Gordon MacFarlaine, Oroklini

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