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international driving permit


fun125

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i have just obtained an international driving permit apparently ok for use in thailand purchased from the post office . has anyone used one in thailand or do the police not care and fine you anyway ?

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As long as your IDP covers whatever you are driving you should be OK but you do need your own country license to be totally legal.  I still use an out of date by six years IDP when stopped by police without any problems as yet but I do have a Thai license ready for when they realise!  An IDP is for use in any country of the world which accepts them, Thailand is one that does.  

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I was pulled up by Police last year and had IDP and my own license. Took a lot of talking to convince them that the date on the IDL was the Issue date not the expiry date!

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Got pulled 3 times in january.....twice on motorbike and once in car.......showed my IDP and twice they asked me for driving licence to which I replied not need this is international licence.....took a look and let me on my way....no problem

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I too use a IDP along with my US drivers license. I just received my renewal (yearly) in the mail just in time for my upcoming April, Songkran trip.

I have been stopped a few times both in cars and motorbikes and the BIB have accepted my IDP. My permit is for both auto and motorcycle as well as my US drivers license.

I rent a car each trip (4 time a year) and the car rental place makes a copy of my IDP and passport and I'm good to go. Same with motorbike rentals, BTW I don't rent motorbikes in Pattaya.

LeoTex

 

 

"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits"  Albert Einstein.

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Some policemen care about the IDP, one day i was randomly controlled on Soi Buakaow and luckily i had both my French driver license and IDP with me.

He said that i was lucky to have all my papers and let me go (looked a bit angry), during the meantime i put my helmet the next farang driver was fined, he didn't have any papers on him....


 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I used to get a new IDP each year then said fuck it and just stuck with my AUS drivers licence. Only been pulled over once since and they accepted my licence. I'm not sure if it had anything to do with the fact they wanted to get rid of me after I spent 20 mins arguing with them for being busted riding a scooter in the right lane on Sukhumvit Rd in BKK. After protesting my innocence - how was I supposed to know bikes weren't allowed in the right lane? they eventually handed me off to the english speaking cop who had the biggest diamond pinky ring I have every seen and he had sympathy with my plight but said next time...you get ticket.

Anyway, this also from TripAdvisor for what it's worth but yeah, really comes down to the individual cop i'd say:

According to the UN Traffic Act of 1949 and the Thai Traffic Act of 1979, an IDP is not required if you are a tourist/visitor in Thailand as long as your license is in English, has a photo, and your country is a contracting state of the 1949 treaty, which most are.  (See motoring law below)  If you are a resident, however, you require a Thai drivers license. As a tourist, rental car companies, insurance companies and police will all accept your home license. Still, it not a bad idea to obtain a legitimately issued INTERNATIONAL DRIVING PERMIT (IDP) before you leave your home country.

MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY ACT (Thai Law)

Section 42

  • Anyone who wishes to drive a motor vehicle on public roads must possess an appropriate driver licence.
  • The driver must carry the driver licence and a photocopy of the registration book and show them to competent officers upon request.
  • This does not apply to those who are learning to drive a motor vehicle according to the provision of Section 57.
  • If the driver is an alien who doesn't have an immigrant visa, he may drive a motor vehicle with a driver licence specified in the Section 42-2.
  • In such a case, he must carry documents specified by the treaty between the Thai government and the government which issued such driver licence, and show them to competent officers upon request.

Section 42-2 
 

  • In case there is a treaty between the Thai government and a foreign government regarding mutual acceptance of driver licence, an alien who does not have an immigrant visa may drive a motor vehicle with a driver licence issued by such a foreign government, or an automobile association authorised by such a foreign government.

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19 minutes ago, kane666 said:

I used to get a new IDP each year then said fuck it and just stuck with my AUS drivers licence. Only been pulled over once since and they accepted my licence. I'm not sure if it had anything to do with the fact they wanted to get rid of me after I spent 20 mins arguing with them for being busted riding a scooter in the right lane on Sukhumvit Rd in BKK. After protesting my innocence - how was I supposed to know bikes weren't allowed in the right lane? they eventually handed me off to the english speaking cop who had the biggest diamond pinky ring I have every seen and he had sympathy with my plight but said next time...you get ticket.

Anyway, this also from TripAdvisor for what it's worth but yeah, really comes down to the individual cop i'd say:

According to the UN Traffic Act of 1949 and the Thai Traffic Act of 1979, an IDP is not required if you are a tourist/visitor in Thailand as long as your license is in English, has a photo, and your country is a contracting state of the 1949 treaty, which most are.  (See motoring law below)  If you are a resident, however, you require a Thai drivers license. As a tourist, rental car companies, insurance companies and police will all accept your home license. Still, it not a bad idea to obtain a legitimately issued INTERNATIONAL DRIVING PERMIT (IDP) before you leave your home country.

MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY ACT (Thai Law)

Section 42

  • Anyone who wishes to drive a motor vehicle on public roads must possess an appropriate driver licence.
  • The driver must carry the driver licence and a photocopy of the registration book and show them to competent officers upon request.
  • This does not apply to those who are learning to drive a motor vehicle according to the provision of Section 57.
  • If the driver is an alien who doesn't have an immigrant visa, he may drive a motor vehicle with a driver licence specified in the Section 42-2.
  • In such a case, he must carry documents specified by the treaty between the Thai government and the government which issued such driver licence, and show them to competent officers upon request.

Section 42-2 
 

  • In case there is a treaty between the Thai government and a foreign government regarding mutual acceptance of driver licence, an alien who does not have an immigrant visa may drive a motor vehicle with a driver licence issued by such a foreign government, or an automobile association authorised by such a foreign government.

Pretty much everything before the Thai Law paragraphs is wrong.

Netither the UN Traffic Act of 1949 nor  the Thai Traffic Act of 1979 says what you claim. As far as the treaty, this has been posted before but never quoting the actual words from the treaty which is because it doesn't say anything like that. And Thai law says nothing about not requiring an IDP if the license is in English with a photo.

 

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5 minutes ago, Goolabert said:

Pretty much everything before the Thai Law paragraphs is wrong.

Netither the UN Traffic Act of 1949 nor  the Thai Traffic Act of 1979 says what you claim. As far as the treaty, this has been posted before but never quoting the actual words from the treaty which is because it doesn't say anything like that. And Thai law says nothing about not requiring an IDP if the license is in English with a photo.

 

Anyway, this also from TripAdvisor for what it's worth

I wasn't claiming anything apart from that it came from TripAdvisor, hence my "for what it's worth" which could indeed be nothing.

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Here is a more complete translation of the Thai law on the use of a foreign license. This is from the Thai Office of the Council of State website.

 

Title 3 - Driver's license

Section 42. A driver shall be licensed and shall, while driving or controlling other driving trainee in driving, possess driving license and a copy of vehicle registration certificate for producing immediately to the competent official, except the driving trainee under section 57.

 

In case of a driver who is an alien temporarily permitted to reside in the Kingdom under the law on immigration may possess a driving license under section 42 bis while driving in the Kingdom. In this case there shall be accompanied such driving license with the document prescribed in the existing Convention or Agreement between Thai Government and the Government of such country for producing immediately to the competent official45. 

 

[The word “vehicle” is amended its spelling in Thai version under section 3 of the Vehicle Act (No. 12), B.E. 2546 (2003).]

 

Section 42 bis 46. In the case where there is a bilateral agreement between the Government of Thailand and a foreign Government concerning reciprocal recognition of domestic driving licenses, an alien temporarily permitted to stay in the Kingdom under the law on immigration having a driving license issued by the competent official or a driving society recognized by the Government of the country under such bilateral agreement may use the driving license of such country in driving in the Kingdom in accordance with the category and type of vehicle specified in such driving license; provided that the existing Conventions and/or Agreements between the Government of Thailand and the Government of such country and all the provisions relating to the obligations of a driver under this Act must be complied.

 

45 Section 42 paragraph two is added by the Vehicle Act (No. 8), B.E. 2530 (1987).

46 Section 42 bis is added by the Vehicle Act (No. 8), B.E. 2530 (1987).

 

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4 minutes ago, kane666 said:

Anyway, this also from TripAdvisor for what it's worth

I wasn't claiming anything apart from that it came from TripAdvisor, hence my "for what it's worth" which could indeed be nothing.

Sorry if I came off rude but I have corrected this misinformation more than once. In the past there was so much conflicting info that I did the research myself and got copies of the UN and ASEAN treaties (from the UN and ASEAN websites). I also found the Thai govt website with Thai law translations and got copies of that also. I read for myself what the Law and treaties said.

 

 

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Regarding any requirement to get a Thai license, there is none.

The law doesn't say you need one if you are here a certain amount of time. If doesn't say you need one if you are a "resident"

I says you can use a foreign license if you are a non-immigrant.

I have lived here 10 years on back to back extensions of stay. My friend has worked here for the last eight years and has had a work permit the whole time. We are both considered to be non-immigrants (although my friend is considered tp be a "resident" for tax purposes).

This is really a moot point since anyone staying long term should get a Thai license anyway whether required or not.

 

 

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Got pulled 3 times in january.....twice on motorbike and once in car.......showed my IDP and twice they asked me for driving licence to which I replied not need this is international licence.....took a look and let me on my way....no problem


Your actually wrong. The IDP even states that you need to have your home country license in possession with your IDP to be fully valid.


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What am I actually wrong about ........I said about how I got stopped three times and how the police looked at my IDP and let me on my way without asking to see my home country licence......just telling about my experience.....maybe i was lucky but thats what happened.....

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have been pulled over a few times with IDP.  Pattaya cops know exactly what it is and understand the motorcycle endorsement.  Have seen a guy with IDP no motorcycle endorsement get a ticket for not having a license.  I was right next to him with a motorcycle stamp and I was allowed to ride off. 

 

Same as poolieblue here.  They never asked to see my home license the last couple times pulled over.  Yes I am aware you're required to have it but they never asked for it.

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If you want to rent a bike make sure you got a motorbike license if renting a bike over 125cc . They usually only ask for IDP . 

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  • 3 weeks later...

I was driving one morning and got pulled up I'd took my licence out of my wallet the night before and didn't have it with me luckily I remembered I had an IDP in the glove box dug it out gave it to him and he was happy with it. Kept old of it whilst I went and paid the 400 baht fine for driving on the wrong side at the cop shop went back he gave it to me back job done.

The funny thing I thought was they never asked for insurance or anything and on the wall was notice saying the penalty for driving without a valid Driving licence was 1000baht or 1 month in prison.

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