There is a six-month wait for motorists in some parts of the country who request an appointment online for the National Car Test (NCT).
However, Applus+, the company that runs the service, said that if motorists called the helpline number, they could make an appointment within a month.
A company spokeswoman said it only puts a third of its appointments online as it is still dealing with Covid-related issues, which are part of the reason for the backlog.
“Covid is still impacting us; there are personnel problems. If a motorist applies online and the first appointment is about six months away, give us a call. If people call us, we will get them an appointment much sooner, within a month, “added the spokeswoman.
In January and February of this year alone, there were 36,000 test date cancellations, of which 11,400 were canceled by the NCT.
The NCT is conducted every two years for vehicles between four and nine years old. For vehicles 10 years or older, an annual inspection is required.
However, due to the pandemic, a four-month extension was granted on March 28, 2020, for cars registered before August 1, 2016.
The Applus+ spokeswoman said it was a “particularly challenging time” for the service.
“All centers are in fairly high demand at the moment with Drogheda having the highest waiting time and Limerick having the shortest waiting time. The reason Drogheda has the highest is because there is currently renovation work going on in the customer waiting area.
“These improvements will significantly improve NCT’s overall customer experience, but unfortunately in order to carry out this renovation work safely, we have had to reduce capacity for the duration of the works.”
She said the first three months of the year were generally the busiest for the National Automobile Testing Service (NCTS) “since the NCT is due on the anniversary of the vehicle registration date and most registrations occur early in the year.” of year.
“This year has been especially challenging for NCTS with the impact of Covid, which caused significant levels of staff absenteeism at testing centers and resulted in several canceled NCT appointments. Additionally, there were very high levels of customer no-shows and late cancellations.”