Australia Migration, Immigration Australia, Migrating to Australia
20th July 2008 about | WA Tourist Info | copyright | contact us | privacy policy | terms | sitemap |
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0208366, 0426675, 0641256, 0742456 and 0640237
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Drivers Licence

obtaining a drivers license in Australia

How do I get an Australian drivers licence?
Australian driver licences are administered at state/territory level, and regulations vary as a result. You will normally need to obtain a state licence within 3 months of taking up residence in the state (you can use your overseas licence in the meantime).

You may need to do a practical test unless:

  • you have a New Zealand licence; or
  • you hold a current overseas licence and have previously held an Australian licence - the exact regulations in this area can be complex and vary from state to state
  • you hold a current licence issued by an overseas country - including most of the European Union nations, Canada, the USA and Japan - whose licensing system is recognised as similar to Australia's. All Australian states and territories are moving to grant this exemption - as of May 2002 it has been implemented in WA, Victoria and Queensland, with NSW set to follow on 20 May 2002.
    If you are moving to another state/territory you will need to check with the government directly as to whether they have implemented this scheme or not.

If you have held your overseas licence (even from a non fully-recognised country) for a number of years, you should be exempt from probationary restrictions once you pass your test.

In NSW the theory test is computer based and can be taken at any RTA office. It does not matter if you fail the theory test - you just try it again, except that since January 2002 there is a fee of AUD30 for each attempt. The theory test can be
practised online. However, if you fail the practical test you lose your visiting driver privileges straight away. You need to obtain a NSW learner licence until you pass the test, and until then you are subject to learner restrictions (eg you can't drive alone and you are subject to an 80kph speed limit). However, even if you only pass the practical test a second time, you are still not subject to probationary restrictions once you do pass as long as you have held an overseas licence for three years.

Under NSW regulations, you can keep your overseas licence once you obtain a NSW licence (whether learner or full) but your overseas licence will be endorsed so that it is no longer valid in the State.

You need proof of address in the State to get an NSW licence. This can be quite simple, any offical letter addressed to you there should do. If you are staying with friends and don't have anything official, one of them can sign the form to vouch for you as long as he/she holds a NSW licence.

People on temporary visas in NSW can keep using their overseas licences for longer than three months. They can get a NSW licence if they wish, but will need to go through the testing process. One 'advantage' of continuing to use an overseas licence is that as far as I know you can't get demerit points for things like speeding (although you can still be fined, and in extreme cases your visiting driver privileges could be taken away).

Bear in mind that in Australia, you generally have to carry your driving licence (whether Australian or overseas) with you at all times. This is different from the practice in the UK

New South Wales traffic authority
http://www.rta.nsw.gov.au/

The RTA is responsible for promoting road safety and traffic management, driver licensing and vehicle registration. It is also responsible for the maintenance and development of the National Highway and State Road network in NSW. It provides funding assistance to Local Councils for Regional Roads and to a limited extent, for Local Roads. The RTA manages the operations, maintenance and enhancement of 17,620km of State Roads including National Highways. It also manages 2,971km of Regional Roads and Local Roads in the unincorporated area of NSW where there are no Local Councils. The RTA assists Local Councils in managing 18,939km of Regional Roads and, to a limited extent, Local Roads, through funding and other support

Victoria
http://www.vicroads.vic.gov.au/

VicRoads serves the community by managing the Victorian road network and its use as an integral part of the overall transport system. VicRoads works to achieve improved access, safety and mobility for Victoria's road users. This Web site provides information about VicRoads services, products and strategies.

Western Australia
http://www.onlinewa.com.au/enhanced/getaround/motoring/

Insurance

Buying or Selling a Vehicle

Car Licence Payments

On-line Drive Safe Handbook

Driver Safety

Learning Driver's Licence

Changes

Fines & Infringements

GST and Third Party Motor Vehicle Insurance Premiums

Interstate Vehicle Registrations

Learner's Permits for Drivers

Marine Safety

Motor Vehicle Accidents

Motor Vehicle Registrations

Older Road Users' Handbook

Road News

Road Safety

Road Safety Council

Roadworks Bulletin

Safe Touring in WA

SaferWA - Vehicle Immobilisation Program

Third Party Motor Vehicle Insurance

Touring WA

Traffic & Road Faults Reporting

Traffic and Road Conditions

Traffic Cam

Traffic Management Information

Transfering Driver's Licences

Vehicle Examinations

Vehicle Licencing and Registration

Southern Australia
http://www.transport.sa.gov.au/

On the 23rd of March 1927, the Highways and Local Government Department was formed by administrative fiat, commencing the history of a Department which through the efforts of its many faithful employees has sought to serve the people of South Australia well. It's a story of the Department and its work and of the men and women who made the Department and helped develop its unique culture. The growth and development of the Department reflects the increased significance of the role of the motor car and road transport in the social and economic life of South Australia. Initially the provisions of roads and bridges was considered a local government matter, but in the early 20th century, with the increased popularity and ownership of motor vehicles, the central government assumed an increased responsibility for the provision of improved roads. As road transport became increasingly significant, so too did the role of the Department, particularly during the critical years of World War II and the long period of economic boom which followed. Transport SA now services all areas of transport, including air, rail, marine, freight, vehicle registration & licensing and of course roads. The history of Transport SA is more than a history of a government department. It is a history of South Australia, albeit from a particular perspective.

 

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