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Obtaining A Thai Driving Licence

If you are a long term resident or hold a long-term visa, and you drive, you are required to obtain a Thai Driving Licence.

When applying for a driving licence for the first time you will need the following documents.

1. Certificate of Residence

2. Medical Certificate

3. copy of the details page of your passport

4. copy of the visa in your passport

5. copy of the last entry stamp

6. copy of the white ‘departure’ card that should be in your passport

7. copy of your home country driving licence (both sides)

If you are renewing an existing licence, you need all of the above plus:-

8. copy of your expiring Thai driving licence. (both sides)

To cut down on the number of ‘copies’ it is acceptable to combine 4 & 5 and also 7 & 8

if you are renewing. All copies have to be signed by you.

You need to take your passport with you, your home driving licence, and, in the case of renewal, you will need your expiring Thai driving licence. If you are applying for or renewing a car and

a motorbike licence, you will need to supply a complete set of documentation for each

licence.

To get or renew your licence you have to attend the Licensing Office in person. To get to the Licensing Office take Highway 7 out of Pattaya and go to the  interchange with Highway 36, bearing left onto Highway 36. Take the first left-hand turn just past the Regents School, and you’ll soon see the office come into view. The office opens from 9:00am and, as can be expected, is usually very busy.

The licence office is upstairs. At the head of the stairs is a desk where your papers will be checked. If applying for a renewal, you will be relieved of your expiring licence. If all your paperwork is in order, an application form will be attached to the paperwork, you will need to sign this and enter any information requested. You will then be given a coloured numbered card and directed inside.

‘Testing’ takes place in groups of about thirty applicants. You will be called according

to the colour of your ticket as in ‘Green ticket numbers one to thirty’. There are four ‘tests’. The first is for colour blindness; the second for peripheral vision; the third is for ‘depth perception’, and the fourth and final test is for reaction time.

After completing and passing the tests, you will be directed back to the waiting area.

You may be directed to a room to watch a so-called safety video or you might just be directed to go and pay for your licence.

The cost of licences is clearly displayed on a board in front of this desk. Over and above the cost of your licence you will be required to pay an extra one hundred baht for having the application processed and a further five baht for having made a ‘request’. So what you actually pay is the licence fee plus one hundred and five baht.

AFter this you will be required to wait until called again to have your photo taken. You will be asked to wait a few minutes and, within minutes, your name will be called and you will be issued with your licence.