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Driving license?

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific Driving license?

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1. Posted by Chocky763 (Budding Member 3 posts) 8y

Chocky763 has indicated that this thread is about Australia

I'm off to Oz for what will hopefully be 2 years at some time in the next 6 months (the sooner the better, but need to sort my finances first or I'd go tomorrow) and need some advice on driving licenses.

I've held a full UK license for nearly 12 years, can I just use this or will I need to take an Aussie test?

2. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4834 posts) 8y

As long as you won't become an Australian resident, your overseas drivers license is valid for however long you stay in Australia.

3. Posted by Chocky763 (Budding Member 3 posts) 8y

Cool, thanks - I'm assuming if I get the opportunity to become a resident (one can dream) I would need to take a test then?

4. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4834 posts) 8y

I don't know if it involves taking a new test (could be that they just acknowledge the validity of your overseas license), but you'd need to get an Australian license, yes - within six months of getting the residence visa iirc (might even be only three months).

5. Posted by Chocky763 (Budding Member 3 posts) 8y

Thanks Sander - that's confirmed what I thought through reading some over-complicated websites :)

6. Posted by KoalaGirl (Travel Guru 307 posts) 8y

Quoting Sander

I don't know if it involves taking a new test (could be that they just acknowledge the validity of your overseas license),

With a UK drivers licence, you don't need to re-take the test here in Australia. You just need to go to the Road Authority Office (here in Victoria it's Vic Roads) show your UK drivers licence and they will issue you an Australian drivers licence.

Quoting Sander

but you'd need to get an Australian license, yes - within six months of getting the residence visa iirc (might even be only three months).

Yes, you need to get the Australian licence within 3 months, unless you are travelling on a student visa.

7. Posted by kevandshan (Full Member 142 posts) 8y

Actually,
Your license is valid for 12mths, at which point you must have an International license.
If you intend on staying there for longer than 12 mths you should apply for one.
There is no test, simply pay the fee (less than $20).
You can also apply for a license in Australia, but in most cases you will have to sit the theoretical component. Simply owning a license will not ensure you of a local drivers license.

8. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4834 posts) 8y

Quoting kevandshan

Actually,
Your license is valid for 12mths, at which point you must have an International license.

The "international drivers license" is a scam. But assuming you mean an international driving permit (which is basically a translation of a non-English language drivers license), could you quote a source for this? I have never heard of this rule before, nor found any documentation which agrees with you.

Roads and Traffic Authority, NSW:

If you do not intend to stay in NSW and do not hold a permanent visa, you will be regarded as a visiting driver. If you hold a current overseas driver licence you are not required to get a NSW licence even if your stay is longer than three months. If the licence is not written in English, an International Driving Permit, or an English translation must also be carried with the licence when driving.

VicRoads

If you are in Victoria on a temporary visa, you can drive on your overseas licence (provided it is a current, valid licence) for an indefinite period provided your overseas licence is in English (or you have an English translation), or you have an International Driving Permit.

etc, etc.

9. Posted by kevandshan (Full Member 142 posts) 8y

Quoting Sander

As long as you won't become an Australian resident, your overseas drivers license is valid for however long you stay in Australia.

There are seven (7) jurisdictions in Australia, each with their own regualtions. You must ensure that the definition of 'visitor' applies to you. If, for example, you have a two (2) year working visa, you may be excluded as a 'visitor' and may have to apply for an International Driving Permit/ Licence.

Some hire car companies require an IDP/L. There may also be insurance issues.
As insurance, regardless of what some people believe is true, I would get myself an IDP/L for the mesely $25.00 and relax knowing that you are driving within the regulations and insured appropriately...

Here are some sites that may be of interest.

http://www.rta.nsw.gov.au/licensing/newtonsw/international_drivers.html

http://www.dpi.wa.gov.au/licensing/mylicence/1365.asp

"For overseas visitors the rules are much the same (3months). If just visiting WA you are permitted to drive on your overseas licence for up to 12 months.

If your licence is not written in English be sure to carry an official translation whenever driving. In applying for a WA licence you will be required to provide proof of identity and residency in WA; a translation of your licence if not in English; your overseas drivers licence".

Bets of luck with your travels

:)

[ Edit: Edited on Jan 9, 2008, at 4:01 AM by kevandshan ]

10. Posted by makka (Respected Member 248 posts) 8y

so we have established that a UK driving licence is valid in Oz awesome!

1 more question which i dont believe has been asked, when taking your UK driving licence with you ...is just the photo ID card valid enough, or would the (green) Counterpart Driving Licence paperwork be needed also?