If you are visiting from another country or have recently arrived in New Zealand, and you have a current and valid driver licence, you can drive for a maximum of 12 months from the date you arrive in New Zealand. Each time you visit New Zealand, you may drive for a further 12-month period on a valid overseas driver licence, as long as you stay for no more than a year at a time.
You must have your current and valid overseas driver licence or driver permit with you at all times when you’re driving. If your overseas licence or driver permit is not in English, you must also carry an accurate English translation issued by:
- a translation service approved by the NZ Transport Agency (phone our contact centre on 0800 822 422 for a list of approved translation services) or go to https://www.nzta.govt.nz/driver-licences/new-residents-and-visitors/approved-translators/#translators , or
- a diplomatic representative at a high commission, embassy or consulate, or
- the authority that issued your licence.
Note: if your driver licence is not in English, an international driving permit (IDP) - issued in accordance with a United Nations Convention on Road Traffic - may be acceptable as a translation.
If you don't have a current and valid overseas driver licence or IDP then you cannot drive in New Zealand. If you want to drive then you must apply for a New Zealand driver licence.
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