Obtaining a Thai driving license involves submitting documents that prove eligibility to have a driving license and then taking a simple test to determine your appropriateness to be driving on Thai roads. Luckily, people who have a valid International Driving License can drive legally in Thailand. However, those who wish to get a Thai driving license, the process will be a little more complicated.
Here’s a rundown of what do to obtain a Thai driving license.
To be eligible for a Thai driving license, the applicant must be of sound mind and health. In general, a person’s health status, whether mental of physical, should not impede their ability to safely operate a vehicle. Moreover, the applicant has to be at least 18 years of age.
For foreigners, the applicant would also need to have a valid Non-Immigrant Visa, which means tourists, who do not have this document, cannot apply for a driving license, although it has been known that some test centres will provide a 1yr license on tourist visas if the person applying has a full driving license from their home country.
In order to get the license, you will need to submit your non-immigrant visa and a passport, as well as signed copies of the first page of the passport, a page showing your current non-immigrant visa, and also a page showing the last stamp made during entry as well as the TM-card. A letter from your embassy or the Immigration Bureau showing your address is also required, and it must be less than 30 days old. However if you work in Thailand, you can use your work permit as an alternative to this letter when verifying your address.
Other documents needed include the doctor’s certificate attesting to your sound mental and physical health. This too should not be over 30 days old. Two photos are also required, and should be at most 6 months old.
You will also need to submit your International Driving License or the license from your home country and a signed photocopy certified by the consulate or ambassador if they are available in Thailand.
The test begins by filling of a form in which you apply for a year’s temporary driving license. You will then hand over all the required documents which will then be verified before you can proceed with the test. You will then undergo three tests.
The first test is the color blindness test, where you will identify a dot’s color. You can answer in English although Thai is preferable. You will then undergo a reflex test to determine how you use the gas and the brake pedal in emergency situations. The final test will test your depth of perception whereby you will have to align a moving pin with a fixed pin.
If you do not have a current full license from your home country you would also be required to undertake the physical driving test.
Getting The License
Once you pass the tests, your documents will be handed to you with the appropriate signatures. You will then hand over your documents to be checked, after which you pay the required fee append the required signatures to be given a 1 year temporary driver’s license. You can then have your license laminated. After 1 year you are able to apply for a 5yr license.
Getting a Thai driving license is not a very difficult process. All that is required are the appropriate documents, after which you will take a simple test and then you can walk away with your temporary driving license.