Foreign-issued International Driving Licenses/Permits

This has been hit on in many threads, but I just went to the DMV in Taipei and had something new happen which I hadn’t heard or read about before.

I have an Int’l Driving License for cars (I assume the procedures for motorcycles are the same, but I’m not sure). The guy I talked to was VERY certain this is how they work:

If you are in Taiwan for less than one month, they are valid. After one month, they are not valid unless you go get them stamped at the DMV (what they call a ‘visa’ in Chinese - qian1 zheng4); its fairly quick and free (or it might have been a hundred NT, I forget). Anyways, the guy said that if you have it stamped, it is valid in Taiwan as long as the license is valid.

I had never heard this before; I’ve heard they’re never good, they’re only good for two months, and they’re only good for six months. Just thought I should share this, in case any of you are interested (I just got fined for not having a license; they might be trying to crack down more on these things, so be careful…)

I had the same experience. I had my license stamped/validated for free at the DMV on Bade Road. One time a cop stopped me and told me that my license wasn’t valid.
Me: Are you sure?
Him: Yes, it is not valid in Taiwan.
Me: Are you really, really, sure?
Him: It is against the law to drive in Taiwan with one of those things.
Me: Well then, what’s this all about? (I show him the validation clearly stamped on the inside of it.)
He then took out his gun and pistol-whipped me for being a smartass. (Well, ok, he didn’t.) But judging from the expression on his face, he was thinking about it. :laughing: After much muttering and back-pedalling he let me go.

Is there any way to extend the international drivers license without having to go back to your country?

Is there any way to extend the international drivers license without having to go back to your country?

Not that I know off. In my case I need to go back and actually be resident (which I am not for tax reasons, something which is completely legal in case you wonder), i.e. have my permanent address registered in Germany.
A 2nd address (like your parents house) is sufficient however.
According to my information embassies do not offer such services and driving licenses don’t fall into their area.

So if you know you are going to stay for several years I rekon to consider a transfer (if applicable) or get a local license. Doesn’t solve the problem when travelling though but you could then always get a “local” international driving license …

If you’re from the US, you can just do it through the mail. Check out the AAA website for your state, and you can download the application from there! You do have to have a US drivers license though.

According to the German Institute, you can drive a car here with your national German driver’s licence for 185 days after arriving here. They advise to have a translation of your diver’s licence there seems to be no written rule for it. This is a bilateral thing and applies for Taiwanese in Germany as well, but not necessarily to other Foreigners in Taiwan.

Alternatively, you can drive with an international drivers licence for 30 days after arrival before you have to get it stamped by the Taiwanese authorities. The Taiwanese admission is either valid for the length of your ARC or the validity of your international driver’s licence, whichever is shorter.

They say the third alternative is to take a local driving test including a theoretical and a practical exam, with the theoretical exam in English. This is a link to the Motor Vehicles Office:

tcmvd.gov.tw/en_default1.htm

Iris

Unfortunately for the German Institute, nobody, including the local DMV, probably knows for sure. If you look at the AIT website (I think it was the website), they offer no advice for becoming a legal driver in Taiwan, as every time they called the DMV they would get different answers to the same question.

I’ve got international licenses in the mail from the UK (contact the RAC or AA) every year for the last 3.

Why go through all of the rigmarole, when it is so easy to pass the local driving test. If a person is legally here ie has an ARC then it is a simple procedure, which does not take very long. Once got it solves all the issues.

In all of the countries i visit, if i am there for more than a few months, then if i cannot use my International or obtain a local licence by having a UK one, then i just take the local test.

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I just got my international Driving Permit/License here in the UK which says it is valid for 1 Year? Is that so or will I have to get it stamped after 30 days like previously said.

Also how does the insurance work in Taiwan? My girlfriend and I are about to buy a scooter there when I arrive next week.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

I just got my international Driving Permit/License here in the UK which says it is valid for 1 Year? Is that so or will I have to get it stamped after 30 days like previously said.

The license itself it valid for a year but not all countries allow you to use an International Driving license for a longer period of time. After that you usually have to transfer it or apply (make) a local license.
Some countries won’t grant any extension but e.g. in Malaysia you just apply for a local license without that you need to sit for a test. As the license there needs to be extended (for a fee) every year the government has found an easy way of additional income. (In comparision my German driver’s license does not expire.)

If Taiwan offers you an extension by stamping it I would make use of that, as well check if you cannot just do a transfer which applies to some countries (no test required!).

Here is a question that relates to this thread but I haven’t seen it addressed specifically. I wonder if anyone has any knowledge of this.

Does DMV in Taiwan issue an internationally accepted driving permit of any kind? To put it another way, can foreign residents with a valid ROC driving license be issued an International Driving License by the DMV in Taiwan?

Anyone?

I don’t know specifically if they issue an International to an ARC license holder - however I have used a Taiwan drivers license to rent cars in Aus/Thai/US - never had an issue

Does DMV in Taiwan issue an internationally accepted driving permit of any kind? To put it another way, can foreign residents with a valid ROC driving license be issued an International Driving License by the DMV in Taiwan?

You mean ROC or Taiwanese drivers license (sorry if there is not difference, don’t know …).
If it’s a local one I think it should be no problem. Best thing is to check directly with the DMV.

(I had a Malaysian dl and Malaysian international dl before, plus a set of German ones, so I would assume the same can be applied in Taiwan.)

Yes they do, i currently hold one, and i am a UK citizen. THe only question i would raise is whether they would issue one to someone who did a licence exchange rather than passing the driving test here.

I exchanged my foreign licenses for local ones (back in the good old days). I’ve had a couple of international permits issued to me since they changed the rules, no problems.
It is funny when you show this to a cop in the US and back it up with an ROC driver’s license, but it works just like it was a real one. :laughing:

Can’t I just drive with an international drivers license? Why would I have to get a Taiwanese one?

I think the international license only allows you to drive for a couple of months and then you need to get a local one. This has been discussed a lot before. Do a search for license and you’ll find what you’re looking for.

You can drive for one month after arrival with an international license.
After the month is up - you can take the international license to the MVD and they will tape a piece of paper in it with many stamps and chops. This allows you to use the International license until its expiry date (usually one year from date of issue). So after one year you have to get a Taiwanese license or send off for another International license.

Of course the international license is only valid for driving the type of vehicle your original “home” license says you can drive. So if you have an original license to drive a car and an international license based on that original license - then your international license is only good when driving cars - not scooters. To use an international license for driving a “heavy” scooter or motorcycle - your original license and international license must be motorcycle licenses.

As most people don’t have a motorcycle license from their home country - they must get a Taiwanese license to drive a scooter/motorcyle.

Also - the MVD will give you a license without testing if you are from certain countries or a certain states in the US. See the mutual beneficiary link on their website for the list:
http://www.tcmvd.gov.tw/english/en_d2k_frm.htm

International drivers license used to be good in Taiwan without any testing, etc. What happened with that???