In Australia, each state and territory issues their own driver’s license. Most states allow visitors from certain countries to drive with their existing driver’s license.
Australia requires visitors from some countries to drive with an international driver’s license. Find out below what you need to do if you are a visitor or whether you a moving from overseas to live.
Visiting drivers are:
- Overseas Defence Force personnel and their families.
- People on business trips.
- People with working holiday visas.
- People working temporarily in WA.
- Students studying in WA.
If your overseas licence is not in English, you must carry an international driving permit or an approved English translation of your licence with you when you drive.
Moving to Western Australia
If you have relocated to Western Australia, you have up to 3 months to obtain a WA driver’s license.
Applying for a WA driver’s license involves providing proof of identity, proof of WA residence, submitting the application in person, having your photo taken, undertaking any tests if required, and paying the application fee.
WA’s Department of Transport outlines the steps here.
Forms can be collected and submitted at Department of Transport centres, Australia Post outlets and through the Remote Licensing program. For locations and opening times of participating agents, visit:
New South Wales
Moving to New South Wales
If you have relocated to New South Wales, you have up to 3 months to obtain a New South Wales driver’s license.
To apply for a New South Wales driver’s licence, you must attend a registry or service centre in person and:
- Take your overseas licence with you
- Provide proof of your identity and residential address
- Provide proof of your Australian permanent residency
- Complete the Licence Application form (PDF)
- Pass an eyesight test
- Pass a knowledge test for each class of licence you require, unless you are exempt
- Pass a driving or riding test for each class of licence you require, unless you are exempt
- Pay the relevant licence fee
You do not have to pass a knowledge test if your driver’s license is from a Recognised Country A:
- Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada, Croatia, Denmark
- Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Guernsey
- Ireland, Isle of Man (licences issued since 1 April 1991), Italy, Japan, Jersey, Luxembourg
- Malta (licences issued or renewed since 2 January 2004), Netherlands, New Zealand, (except for paper licences), Norway, Portugal
- Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States of America
Recognised Country B: If you hold a licence from one of these countries and are 25 years or older, you do not have to pass knowledge and driving tests when applying for a car (class C) or rider (class R) NSW licence.
- Latvia, Lithuania, Poland
- Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea (Republic of Korea), Taiwan
- Bulgaria, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hong Kong, Hungary (Important: Hong Kong licence holders must have held a Hong Kong licence for a minimum period of 12 months).
To submit your application form for a New South Wales driver’s license visit one of the Roads and Maritime Service centres.
If you have moved to Victoria on a Temporary Visa
- you can drive using your current overseas driver licence for the length of your stay
- your driver licence must be written in English or accompanied by an English translation or international driving permit.
If you have moved to Victoria on a Permanent Visa you have up to 6 months to obtain a Victorian driver’s license.
Apply for a Victorian driver’s license
If your overseas driver licence was issued from one of the country’s or jurisdictions listed below, your driver licence IS recognised in Victoria and you will not need to sit a drive test.
|Recognised countries and jurisdictions|
|Austria||Germany||Isle of Man (1)||Norway|
|Croatia||Bosnia & Herzegovina||Jersey||Spain|
Bring relevant ID and application forms to your appointment.
Quirks of driving in Melbourne
Melbourne has trams and “hook turns” which can be unusual for visitors new to the city.
At some intersections in Melbourne where trams operate, to turn right you must do a ‘hook turn’. These intersections are clearly marked, with a sign hanging overhead or on the side of the road.
If you have relocated to Queensland, you have up to 3 months to obtain a Queensland driver’s license.
Applying for a Queensland driver’s license involves:
- completing an application form,
- including your existing driver’s licence if you’re from overseas or interstate,
- presenting proof of identity (including proof of your Queensland address),
- declaring you are fit to drive,
- paying the license fee.
Applications can be submitted at:
- a Transport and Main Roads customer service centre,
- a Queensland Government license issuing centre,
- a Queensland Government Agent Program office (in rural or remote areas),
- or a licence-issuing police stations (in rural or remote areas).
To find the nearest place to submit your driver’s licence application form, search the Queensland Government’s Transport and Motoring Services search tool.