A driver's license is a very small and inconspicuous document – however, in Germany it is obligatory to have it with you every time you’re behind the wheel. This article helps you if you need information on whether you require a German driver's license and how to convert your foreign licence.
German driver's license
When you are planning to drive in Germany you must carry a valid national driver’s license alongside a German translation or an international driver’s license. If you wish to continue driving six months after entering Germany, you must be in possession of a German driver’s license. The transfer of your foreign driver's license requires several steps depending on where your national license was issued. In the end of the process, the German Führerscheinstelle will keep your foreign license in exchange for your new German license.
Note: If your driver’s license is issued by an EU country, it is recognised in Germany and throughout the EU.
To get a German license you have to take theoretical and practical driving exams depending on your home country. Fortunately, many German driving schools offer classes in English and other languages. You can even take the theoretical tests in different languages.
Convert a foreign for a German diver's license
Getting a German driver’s license involves battling with German official bodies and sometimes theoretical or practical exams depending on where you come from. In order to convert your license for a German driver's license you have to allow at least two months for the whole process, provided you have to take the tests. First call the office that will issue your license (Führerscheinstelle) to find out which documents are required in order to avoid difficulties. Authorities in Germany often have a different set of requirements depending on their location.
- official identification document such as a passport
- original national license together with a German translation and classification (more information below)
- a residence confirmation from the Einwohnermeldeamt
- a recent biometric photo
- Documentation of a recent eye test (not older than two years)
- Documentation of a recent first aid course