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BANGKOK 24 March 2019 05:54
watgate

International Drivers Permit (IDP)

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I want to get a thai drivers license and my State in the US says it can be used up to a year but if it is in a language other then english or spanish the license must be accompanied  by an International Drivers Permit (IDP) which serves as an English translation of the international license. Any idea where one can obtain an International Drivers Permit in Chiang Mai? The IDP permit can only be obtained in the country which issued the actual license. I am not sure if I can renew my current US drivers license when it expires therefore I am looking at alternatives so I can drive in the US each year when I go back for a couple of months.

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We've rented & driven rental cars in the US using Thai licences.....I have a 5 year and my wife has the permanent (lifetime) Thai licence & both have been accepted....

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Since I still own a car in the US I am wondering if I can still obtain auto insurance with a thai license when I go back to the US each year for a month or so. Since I still also own a condo in the US I take it I can probably renew my current drivers license when it expires since I would have the prerequisite documentation to renew my license in the US. I am still exploring the feasibility of using a thai license because I would have to go back later in the year to renew my drivers license since you can only renew 6 months before it is due to expire. Also, I would have to find someone to prepare my income taxes since I wouldn't be going back to July. If I can use a thai drivers license then I can go back the beginning of April and not have to find a tax preparer. I also would not have to go later in the year back to the US since I would not be renewing my drivers license.

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Your Thai DL has both Thai and English script so you do not need an IDP for a translation.  

 

You might want to carry your Passport when you drive in the US.  Probably depends on what state, but some say your Thai DL is only valid when accompanied by a PP.

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OP, some states let you renew online, pay with a credit card, but they do mail the license to your address of record.

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IDP's are available at Dept. of Land Transport offices, but if you do not already have a Thai license, you can't get an IDP until you have a 5 yr. license. When you first get a Thai license, that license is valid for 2 years. After the 2 years, you will then be given a 5 yr. license when you renew the 2 yr. license.

 

Sounds like you'll need to renew your US license until you complete the 2 yr. license and obtain the 5 yr. license in Thailand. Btw, it's a lot easier to obtain a Thai license if your US license is still valid. 

Edited by gjoo888

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2 minutes ago, gjoo888 said:

IDP's are available at Dept. of Land Transport offices, but if you do not already have a Thai license, you can't get an IDP until you have a 5 yr. license. When you first get a Thai license, that license is valid for 2 years. After the 2 years, you will then be given a 5 yr. license when you renew the 2 yr. license.

 

Sounds like you'll need to renew your US license until you complete the 2 yr. license in Thailand. Btw, it's a lot easier to obtain a Thai license if your US license is still valid. 

 

With an added note: You need to have a Non-Immigration Visa to be eligible to obtain a 5 year DL upon expiration of a 2 year temp licence. 

 

I've actually had 2x 5 year licenses in a row (at the time of renewal I was work permitted), however when extending for my 3rd 5 year licence I could only obtain a 2 year Temp license as I was no longer on a Non-Immigrant Visa - somewhat daft, but it is what it is. 

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12 hours ago, pgrahmm said:

We've rented & driven rental cars in the US using Thai licences.....I have a 5 year and my wife has the permanent (lifetime) Thai licence & both have been accepted....

Same for me in Canada I can drive with my Thai licence but some rental agency still wanted to see the IDP. 

 

Easy, do as I did, you go to the land Transport Office in Chiangmai and they will  tell you how to get a IDP with your Thai 5 years licence.

If I remember:

Your need your original driver Thai Driver. ( make a photocopy too )

Address certificate from Immigration or Embassy.

2 passport type photos

The fee.

They will let you know when to pick it up.

This was 2 years ago.

 

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I want to get a thai drivers license and my State in the US says it can be used up to a year but if it is in a language other then english or spanish the license must be accompanied  by an International Drivers Permit (IDP) which serves as an English translation of the international license. Any idea where one can obtain an International Drivers Permit in Chiang Mai? The IDP permit can only be obtained in the country which issued the actual license. I am not sure if I can renew my current US drivers license when it expires therefore I am looking at alternatives so I can drive in the US each year when I go back for a couple of months.
Not sure what state you are from but check to see if you can do online renewal. I know Texas does and some other states as well.

David

Sent from my SM-N950F using Thailand Forum - Thaivisa mobile app

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I got my IDP from AAA in the US before I went to Thailand.  

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I used my Thai Drivers License in California last month and when I got pulled over for expired registration tag on my Sister's car the Copper just asked a few questions about my license and that was it. She got a fix it ticket.

Sent from my CMR-AL19 using Thailand Forum - Thaivisa mobile app

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On 1/12/2019 at 8:33 AM, watgate said:

Since I still own a car in the US I am wondering if I can still obtain auto insurance with a thai license when I go back to the US each year for a month or so. Since I still also own a condo in the US I take it I can probably renew my current drivers license when it expires since I would have the prerequisite documentation to renew my license in the US. I am still exploring the feasibility of using a thai license because I would have to go back later in the year to renew my drivers license since you can only renew 6 months before it is due to expire. Also, I would have to find someone to prepare my income taxes since I wouldn't be going back to July. If I can use a thai drivers license then I can go back the beginning of April and not have to find a tax preparer. I also would not have to go later in the year back to the US since I would not be renewing my drivers license.

See if you can renew your license over the internet. That’s how I do mine.

for taxes if you have all your statements sent via email you can do those on line as well. Or if you have someone back home that can scan or photo and send them to you via email that works as well. 

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