Over the next few days you should have got an email from Nominet who are the UK domain governing body.

If you own a .co.uk, .org.uk, .me.uk, .net.uk, .plc.uk, or ltd.uk domain, the matching .uk domain may have been reserved for you until 25 June 2019.

This could mean if you own yourwebsite.co.uk, your equivalent .uk domain, so yourwebsite.uk, may have been reserved. After 1 July 2019 any reserved .uk domains that have not been registered will be released into the public domain. This means they can be registered by anyone.

How to register a reserved .UK domain

If you have the rights to register a reserved .uk domain name, please contact your registrar (the company you registered your original domain name with or who looks after it).

Alternatively, you can choose to register your .uk domain A2Z-COMPUTING. For instructions on how to transfer your existing website across to your .uk domain name we recommend you speak directly to your hosting provider.

If you have received an email from us regarding your rights to a reserved .uk domain, please note this is to notify you that you have a .uk domain reserved, and is not in relation to the status of your current .co.uk, .org.uk or .me.uk domain(s).

A2Z Computing is a certified Registrar


How can I check if I have a reserved domain?

You can check your rights to a shorter .uk domain by visiting the online checker https://www.nominet.uk/whois/ or contact your registrar. Further support is available from our support team on +44 (0)1633 676543.

I qualify for rights and I’m interested. How do I register my second level domain?

You will need to register the .uk domain name let A2Z Comptuing know before 6am BST (UTC+1) on the 25th of June 2019. Or we suggest contacting your current registrar who will be able to help you with this.

What happens if I don’t register the corresponding shorter .uk domain?

When your rights elapse on 25th June, the ‘reserved’ domain will be available for registration by someone else.

If I don’t take up the corresponding .UK domain, what happens to my existing registration?

Your existing domain is unaffected and will continue as usual. Remember to continue to renew your registration each year.

I don’t have any rights but there is a .uk domain currently reserved for someone else I would register if available. When will all the second level domains for which the right to register has NOT been taken up become available?

You will not be able to go to a registrar (a company which registers, renews and manages domain names on behalf of end users) and register a second level domain name in the usual way immediately after the deadline date.

All second level domains that are not registered by the deadline date of 25th June will be made generally available in two stages:

Stage One

A release process running from the 1st to the 5th July inclusive. This is the release of .uk domains where rights were not exercised by the deadline date and the domain can now be registered by someone other than the rights holder.

Nominet are releasing the domains in a managed way to ensure a smooth process which will enable eligible registrars to register domains that their customers have expressed an interest in.

If you would like to secure a second level domain name you may have more chance in registering it if you contact your A2Z COMPUTING registrar and find out if they are offering you the ability to pre-order second level domains.

We will usually provide this service on a ‘no-win, no-fee’ basis or refund fees, in whole or in part, if the name is not secured.

This release process will see all the available second level domains released over a five-day period, and the total volume of domains will be split into five different batches, one batch being released every day between Monday 1st July and Friday 5th July.

Not all registrars have signed up to the release process. Where a domain name is not registered through the release system it will be available to register through the standard registration system by all registrars seven days later.

Stage Two

Any second level domains that are not registered by those registrars that are eligible to take part in the release, will become available in the normal way in their respective batches one week after the initial release date.

So, domains that are released in batch 1 (1st July) but not registered will become generally available through the normal registration process (via any registrar) one week later, i.e. on 8th July at or after 14.00 BST (UTC+1).  Batch 2 will become available on 9th July, batch 3 on 10th July, etc.

Why would I want a second level domain name?

Nominet expanded the namespace to offer new and shorter options for those seeking memorable domain names, in line with the changing use and appreciation of domain names. You may also wish to secure your second level domain name as a brand asset or for brand protection purposes.

I registered my .co.uk domain name in the last five years – do I have a right to register the .uk equivalent?

No. Only domains registered before 23:59hrs on 28 October 2013 acquired the rights to the equivalent .uk domain. If you are unsure, please check above. Of course, there’s nothing to stop you registering the .uk domain name if it is available.

When exactly do the rights expire?

06:00 BST (UTC+1) on 25th June 2019.

Isn’t it a problem that someone else can register a very similar domain?

It is a feature of the global domain name system that the same set of characters before the dot – known as the ‘string’ – can appear in names with different suffixes. So for example, ilovedomains.co.uk, ilovedomains.org.uk, ilovedomains.uk.co, or ilovedomains.com might all be registered to different people. It is generally not problematic, and safeguards are in place so action can be taken if domains are used for illegitimate purposes.

I’m worried about someone taking a similar domain and using it to exploit my business. What can I do?

Those who breach our terms and conditions, including our abuse policy, will lose their registration. If you have any subsequent issues with the way in which any domain is being used, you can lodge a complaint with Nominet’s Dispute Resolution Service.

Have other country code top level domain (ccTLD) registries offered second level domain names?

Almost all country code domains allow registration at the second level. New Zealand and Japan are two examples of countries that, like .UK, previously didn’t allow registrations at the second level, but have recently opened up this area of their namespace.