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Aussie Survival Guide
Driving a car in Australia


As a general rule, new arrivals and visitors to Australia are permitted to drive in Australia on their existing driving licences for a maximum of three months after arrival. It is important to note that State Government authorities issue driving licences and requirements can vary state to state.

Even if you do not intend on driving while in Australia it is highly advisable to purchase an International Driving Permit (IDP). This is a special permit established for travellers, which allows motorists to drive in overseas countries without testing as long as their driver's licence is valid.

Another benefit of an IDP is that it is authorised by the United Nations and is recognised in over 150 countries worldwide, including Australia. An IDP can also be used as an additional form of identification whilst travelling. A large portion of car rental firms will also require an IDP before an agreement is reached. Applications for an IDP should be available from your local Post Office.

If you will be residing in Australia for three months or longer, you must obtain a valid driving licence. While one State Authority will issue the licence, the licence will enable you to drive a car anywhere in Australia.

All States have further regulations, or special licences or endorsements for other vehicles such as buses and various size trucks and specialised vehicles. Here are the websites for each State’s licensing authority, on which you should find the information you need:
Australian Capital Territory (ACT)
New South Wales (NSW)

Northern Territory (NT)

Queensland (QLD)

South Australia (SA)

Tasmania (TAS)

Victoria (VIC)

Western Australia (WA)


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