Translating your Driving License

A driving licence 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. Outside of the EU, however, this driving licence is useless. There are two alternative types of driving licence that are valid outside of the EU, which we will explain in the following. 

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International driving licence or translated, certified driving licence?

In which countries is my driving licence valid?

The European driving licence is now valid almost everywhere in Europe.  This is not limited to merely the EU member states, but also to countries like Norway and Switzerland. The ADAC (The General German Automobile Club) points out, however, that in some European countries it is still recommended to have an international driving licence. Outside of Europe, you must always have an international driving licence or a certified, English translation of your European one. 

International driving licences

If you want to be mobile on the roads outside of the EU, and rent or drive a car of your own, then you need an international driving licence. You can apply for one of these at your local authorities, for example at your city council or regional administration office. Always play it safe: many foreign car rental companies will be happy to hand over the keys, however, if you are pulled over for a vehicle inspection you are expected to always have your international driving licence to hand. An international driving licence is valid for three years and is also only valid on journeys abroad. 

Certified English translations 

A convenient alternative to an officially issued international driving licence is a certified English translation of your European driving licence.  A certified translation of your driving licence will be accepted in almost every country outside of the European Union that has English as its official language.  This includes, amongst others: the USA, Canada, South Africa, Namibia and Australia. A certified translation of your driving licence is valid for just as long as your original driving licence! 

The original document must be a valid driving licence – in Germany this could be the pink and turqueoise card driving licence, or even a GDR driving licence, and in the UK this refers to the pink card driving licence. 

Important: regulations are stricter in New Zealand -  it is only possible to rent a car from age 25 upwards. In addition to this, a translation of a grey driving licence is no longer recognised. 

Translating your driving licence – it couldn’t be easier!

lingoking will gladly provide you with a certified translation of your driving licence. Our court sworn translators translate quickly, efficiently and cost-effectively, and of course also provide certification.

In order to carry out the translation we merely need a scan or a photo of your driving licence. You keep the original copy of your driving licence so that you are able to remain on the road whilst we take care of your translation. 

Do you urgently need a translation of your driving licence? Upon request, you can book the lingoking express service for an additional charge. You will receive your translated driving licence within 2 to 3 working days.   

What are the advantages of translating with lingoking? 

  • Quality and discretion: at lingoking, both of these are a given, and both are of the highest priority. Our translations are completed in adherence to the strict regulations of the international quality standard for translation services, DIN EN ISO 17100. 
  • A diverse selection of languages: it doesn’t matter which language combination you need – our lingoking translators are active in over 40 countries and translate in over 80 language combinations. 
  • Comfortable and safe payment: at lingoking, you can pay for the translation of your driving licence by credit card, PayPal or immediate bank transfer – with no added worry! 
  • Personal customer service: our employees are always available to help  with any queries you may have!

Calculate the price of translating your driving licence now!


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