Obtaining A Driving License In Thailand

obtaining a driving license in Thailand

Obtaining a driving license in Thailand

Navigating the Road: A Guide to Obtaining a Thai Driving License as an Expat

Dreaming of cruising Thailand’s scenic routes behind the wheel? and of Obtaining a  driving license in Thailand as an expat opens up a world of freedom and convenience. But before you hit the gas, buckle up and navigate this guide to understand the process, requirements, and necessary steps.

Who can apply?

  • You must be at least 18 years old.
  • Hold a valid non-immigrant visa.
  • Be deemed physically and mentally fit to drive through a medical certificate.


Residency requirements:

While a tourist visa might allow you to drive on an International Driving Permit (IDP) for a limited period, a non-immigrant visa like a work permit or retirement visa is necessary for a Thai driving license.


Where to apply:

Visit your nearest Department of Land Transport (DLT) office. You can find their locations and contact information on the DLT website:


Documents to gather:

  • Passport and copies of its bio page, visa page, and entry stamp.
  • TM.6 departure card.
  • Non-immigrant visa.
  • Medical certificate.
  • Proof of residence: Certificate of residence obtained from immigration,house registration, work permit, or embassy-certified letter.
  • Driving school certificate (if applicable).
  • Home country license.
  • Application form (available at DLT offices).


Typical Fees involved:

  • Application fee: 100 baht
  • Written test fee: 50 baht
  • Practical test fee: 150 baht where applicable.
  • License issuance fee: 200 baht
  • Driving school fees (vary depending on the school and chosen program).


License validity:

  • Car license: Initial 2 years and can be extended for 5 years
  • Motorcycle license: 2 years

Procedures and exams at the DLT:

  1. Submit your application and documents.
  2. Take a vision and color perception test.
  3. Pass a written theory test in English or Thai covering traffic rules and regulations.
  4. Some offices have you demonstrate your driving skills in a practical test using your own vehicle or a rental. However, many offices now have you watch a video then take a perception and braking test on a simulator.
  5. Pay the required fees.
  6. Collect your Thai driving license.


Additional expat tips:

  • Consider attending a driving school: While not mandatory, it equips you with Thai driving rules and practical skills, improving your chances of passing the tests.
  • Book an appointment online: The DLT SMART QUEUE app helps avoid waiting in long lines.
  • Be patient and prepared: The process can take several hours, so bring necessary documents, water, and snacks.
  • Respect the local driving culture: Adapt to Thai driving practices and prioritize safety.
  • Keep your license updated: Renew your license before its expiry date.


Key information in a nutshell:

  • Eligibility: 18+, valid non-immigrant visa, physically/mentally fit.
  • Residency: Non-immigrant visa required.
  • Application: DLT office, online appointment recommended.
  • Documents: Passport, visa, medical certificate, proof of residence, application form, driving school certificate (optional).
  • Fees: Around 500 baht total.
  • License validity: 2-5 years depending on vehicle type.
  • Exams: Vision test, written theory test, practical driving test.
  • Additional tips: Consider driving school, book appointments online, be patient, respect local driving culture, renew your license.


By following these steps and keeping these tips in mind, you’ll be well on your way to obtaining your Thai driving license and exploring the wonders of Thailand from behind the wheel!

This is for informational purposes only, clear guidance should be advised upon by your local DLT office as different offices may have different documentary requirements or needs.

Isaan Lawyers do not assist with obtaining a driving license in Thailand.

However, for all other legal needs contact us here



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