Driving with an overseas or interstate licence in NSW

Visiting NSW? You can use your interstate or overseas driver or rider licence – as long as it's current and you follow NSW road rules.

Tourists and overseas visitors

If you're a tourist or temporary overseas visitor, you can drive in NSW using your overseas licence as long as you:

  • remain a temporary overseas visitor
  • have a current overseas licence
  • have not been disqualified from driving in NSW or anywhere else
  • have not had your licence suspended or cancelled, or your visiting driving privileges withdrawn
  • carry your overseas driver or rider licence.

If your licence is not written in English, you must also carry an English translation, or an International Driving Permit. This is issued by the motoring association or embassy of the country that you are licensed to drive in.

You don’t have to get a NSW licence if you meet these conditions and can prove your visitor status to police, if asked.

Interstate and New Zealand licence holders

You can drive with your existing licence for up to 3 months, as long as you:

  • have a current licence interstate or NZ licence
  • have not been disqualified from driving in NSW or anywhere else
  • have not had your licence suspended or cancelled, or your visiting driving privileges withdrawn
  • carry your driver or rider licence
  • you can prove your genuine visitor status to police, if asked.

Australian citizens and permanent residents

Citizens with overseas licences

If you’re an Australian citizen who lives overseas and has a current overseas licence, you’re permitted to drive in NSW as a temporary overseas visitor. There is no need to apply to get a NSW licence or renew a NSW licence.

Permanent residents

If you’re a permanent resident of Australia under the Commonwealth Migration Act 1958, you can drive or ride on NSW roads using a current overseas licence. You're allowed to do this for up 3 months from the date you arrive in Australia.

If you plan to continue driving on NSW roads, you must get a NSW licence within this 3 month period.

Vehicles you can drive

Car licence holders

Overseas and interstate visitors can drive vehicles covered by a NSW class C driver licence:

  • 4.5 tonnes Gross Vehicle Mass or less, and
  • seating up to 12 adults including the driver.

Make sure you get to know the road rules for NSW – read our Road User Handbook.

Motorcycle licence holders

Overseas and interstate visitors can ride motorcycles covered by their overseas licence class.

Make sure you get to know the rider road rules for NSW – read our Motorcycle Riders’ Handbook.

Heavy vehicle licence holders

Overseas and interstate visitors to NSW can drive the same kinds of heavy vehicles that are covered by their overseas licence.

Make sure you get to know the heavy vehicle road rules for NSW – read our Heavy Vehicle Driver Handbook.

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