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Stretch67 provided this useful information 7 years, 4 months ago:

International Driving Licence / International Driving Permit (IDP)

Once you have gotten over the hurdle of getting your USAEUR driver's licence, it is an easy process to get one that will allow you to drive everywhere in Europe. It takes going to the licence place on Ramstein, getting a form, having a passport sized photo taken and $15. Go to the licence place in Kaiserslautern in the Centrum and you can get the licence.

The address etc for your GPS is on the form you get from Ramstein. Many military members and dependents forget that the one you take the test for only allows you to drive legally in Germany. So, if you travel by car over the border you can be stopped and arrested for driving without a proper licence. This has happened to a lot of people in the last year or so.

FYI



7 years, 4 months ago

[ For those of you who are looking for information on getting your USAREUR driver license for Germany, look HERE. ]

IDL and IDP are just different ways of saying the same thing. International Driver License / Permit

Remember, the International Driver License/Permit (IDL/IDP) is only good outside of Germany. Within Germany you need to use your USAREUR driver license. You are not permitted, as a DoD employee in any capacity, to use an IDP within Germany. This includes using an IDP when you first arrive, prior to getting your USAREUR driver license, to rent a car, or drive a car for any reason.

Also, just a friendly reminder. While you are at vehicle registration, remember to get your emission sticker for your windshield.

For those living in the U.S. who want to get an International Driver Permit before getting here, you can get one online at AAA. You get the same price at AAA locations if you want to go to an office instead of ordering it online. It may cost a few dollars more if you are not a member of AAA.

By the way, it is not a license. It is a translation of your driver license, and must be carried with your VALID U.S. license.

If you get your IDP here in Germany, you don't need a valid stateside driver license, because the IDP will be tied to your USAREUR license.

If you live in Kaiserslautern County, you can get your IDP locally here in Germany at Kreisverwaltung Kaiserslautern. There are other places you can go, depending on where you live. When we got our IDP at this location we were told that anyone who lives in Kaiserslautern County can get a license here.

Lauterstraße 8
67657 Kaiserslautern
0631 7105-0

If you do not live in Kaiserslautern County, you will have to check out your local Rathaus. Or, when you are at Vehicle Registration getting your form stamped, they can tell you where you need to go to obtain your IDP.

There is also an office in Landstuhl. You can get the address and hours here.

The price is €15.30. The IDP you get here will be good for up to three years. The expiration date of this IDP is based on your USAREUR driver license. If you have six months before your USAREUR license expires, you get an IDP that expires in six months. I have also heard that the IDP is good through your DEROS, depending on what expires first. Either way, getting your IDP in Germany is definitely a better deal unless you plan on driving outside of Germany before you get your USAREUR driver license.

You'll need the following when you go:


  • Passport photo
  • USAREUR driver license
  • ID card
  • Application from where you're stationed (Kaupaun Vehicle Registration has it, as well as being attached below for download)
  • Cash payment


Opening times (subject to change on a whim, so call first!):
Mo.+ Di. Mon + Tue 08.00 - 12.00 Uhr u. 13.30 - 16.00 Uhr 08.00 - 12.00 clock and 13.30 - 16.00 clock
Mi. + Fr. Wed + Fri 08.00 - 12.00 Uhr 08.00 - 12.00 clock
Do. 08.00 - 12.00 Uhr u. 13.30 - 18.00 Uhr Thurs 08.00 - 12.00 clock and 13.30 - 18.00 clock


Opening / visiting hours of the district administration: HERE

Finding the address above can be tricky. It seems that some GPS units cannot find this building. I don't know why this is, but to make it easier to find I am posting some location pictures.

This is a photo facing the front door of the building. Currently there is some construction going on.




This photo is also with my back to the building. The tall building is just out of the frame to the left. When you get to the tall building, you will see a sign for Rathaus. The building you want is across the street to your left when facing the entrance of the tall building. Hopefully these photos will help you find the building a little bit easier.



Note: Even if you download the form to fill out, you must take the form to vehicle registration to get the stamp prior to going to Kreisverwaltung Kaiserslautern, or other office to get your IDP. The form to download for Kaiserslautern is the Rheinland Pfalz application.

Baden Würtemberg International Driver License.pdf
Bayern International Driver License.pdf
Hessen International Driver License.pdf
Rheinland Pfalz International Driver License.pdf

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7 years, 1 month ago

Go to the licence place in Kaiserslautern in the Centrum and you can get the licence.

Not necessarily so....you need to go the to rathaus in the COUNTY you reside. If you live, say for instance in Kusel, you would need to go to the rathaus in Kreis Kusel (Kusel County) to obtain the license.

7 years, 1 month ago

Quote by Hans:
Go to the licence place in Kaiserslautern in the Centrum and you can get the licence.

Not necessarily so....you need to go the to rathaus in the COUNTY you reside. If you live, say for instance in Kusel, you would need to go to the rathaus in Kreis Kusel (Kusel County) to obtain the license.


Interesting. I went to the rathaus in my village and they had absolutely no clue as to what I was asking for. Could have been a translation problem (get it? )

I went to the office listed in my last post and was able to get my IDP with no problem. I don't want to reveal where I live exactly, but I can tell you that the place listed in my previous post is not in my village, and is not even near my village. Apparently the place I listed above issues the IDP for people regardless of where they live.

You can get these permits by mail, as well. So, if you are not in a huge hurry, get it here via mail.

Frankly, for ease of obtaining it, just get it in the U.S. before leaving. About a month before it expires, get a new one here via mail.

Suggestion: One of the fields on the application is the effective date. I got my permit about a month before leaving the U.S., but had it made effective for the date of my arrival into Germany. That way it would expire as late as possible. The date of application does not have to be the effective date. If you are renewing, renew early to assure you get it on time. Just set the effective date to be after the expiration of your current permit.

Remember, the AAA permit is good for one year only and requires a valid stateside driver license to accompany it. The IDP issued in Germany requires you to have a valid USAREUR driver license to accompany it.

Application FAQ from AAA website.

7 years, 1 month ago

JOFTAA... Didn't know you could apply by mail from AAA. That's good info to know.

The license, if gotten in Germany, is good for three years. I'm not sure how much it was but I don't believe it was over 20 euro. Will post correct price after I pick up my new one.

You can have your pictures made at Moms. The cost is $7.00 for a sheet of six pictures. Walked in and walked out with pix in hand within ten minutes this past Saturday. BTW these pix are also authorized for US passports.

7 years, 1 month ago

When you go to the Drivers License office in Ramstein (where you take your test) they will give you the form and the list of German offices that you can go to to get your international license. They will circle the one that you need to go to and yes, it is based off of where you live. I would get your USAREUR License and your German International DL. I did not even mess with a AAA license as the German one is the one you really should have since it is based on your USAREUR License rather than your US License.

7 years ago

Quote by Hans:
I'm not sure how much it was but I don't believe it was over 20 euro. Will post correct price after I pick up my new one.


The price was 14.75 Euro or thereabouts!

7 years ago

I did not even mess with a AAA license as the German one is the one you really should have since it is based on your USAREUR License rather than your US License.


True, as long as you are not driving outside of Germany. The USAREUR license is no good once you cross the border into another country. Unless I am misunderstanding you, and you mean the German IDP from the Rathaus.

Quote by Hans:
The price was 14.75 Euro or thereabouts!


At today's fantastic exchange rate, that comes to $20.33.

The one from AAA is $15.

But, from what you said before, the one you get here is better because it is tied to the USAREUR license.

Why is that better? I'm at a point where I have to renew my IDL soon and may just do it the same way that you did.

Also, not that anyone should be breaking laws, but if you hand your U.S. driver license and IDL to a police officer in Europe, you are less likely to get a ticket because they know there is little chance of ever collecting the fine. If you hand over your USAREUR license and IDL, they know there is a much higher chance of being paid, and they will most likely write you a ticket. That is why I would rather use my U.S. driver license with my IDL.

6 years, 9 months ago

My wife and I were going to take the opportunity tomorrow to get our International license. We've got the pics but as I read this thread we don't have a form to go along with us. Can I get this same form at the rathaus (sp?).

6 years, 9 months ago

Quote by STL7997:
My wife and I were going to take the opportunity tomorrow to get our International license. We've got the pics but as I read this thread we don't have a form to go along with us. Can I get this same form at the rathaus (sp?).


Good question. I'm hoping you will report back with the answer. I've only done the IDP at AAA in The U.S. as it is much easier for me to do it by mail.

6 years, 9 months ago

Just asked a friend who got their IDL last summer.

Basically, you have to go to the Driver Testing Office on base, they will check your USAREUR DL and give you a filled out and stamped form. You will need to take this form and a passport size photo to your local German District Office (the Driver Testing Office can give you the address).

It cost about €15 and they will give you an IDL that will be good for 3 years (or less if your USAREUR DL is not valid for they whole 3 years).

This beats the AAA IDL's as I believe they are $15.00 and only good for 1 years.

I recommend Calling the Driver Testing Office on base, to make sure the procedures are still current.

6 years, 9 months ago

DcCow is correct regarding the IDP as far as being good for three years. This is good to know if you are going to be getting your IDP while in Germany.

For those in The U.S., who want to have an IDP upon arrival in Germany, the method using AAA is recommended. Mainly because you won't have your USAREUR license when you get here, meaning you cannot get the IDP in the manner described by DcCow.

Having said that, you do need to understand that you are not supposed to drive, even with an IDP, until you have your USAREUR license. It is kind of a catch 22.

So, for those who are already here, and have a USAREUR driver license, DcCow's method is perfect.

6 years, 9 months ago

Quote by DcCow:

Basically, you have to go to the Driver Testing Office on base, they will check your USAREUR DL and give you a filled out and stamped form.

I recommend Calling the Driver Testing Office on base, to make sure the procedures are still current.

Having said that, you do need to understand that you are not supposed to drive, even with an IDP, until you have your USAREUR license. It is kind of a catch 22.


The stamped form will be good for seven days only!

The procedures were still valid as of 90 days ago.

You can drive a German plated vehicle (rental vehicles fall into this category) with your stateside driver's license and IDP. However, you are not authorized to drive a USAREUR plated/registered vehicle WITHOUT a valid USAREUR certificate of license. If caught doing so, there are severe consequences.

6 years, 9 months ago

Quote by Hans:
The stamped form will be good for seven days only!

The procedures were still valid as of 90 days ago.

You can drive a German plated vehicle (rental vehicles fall into this category) with your stateside driver's license and IDP. However, you are not authorized to drive a USAREUR plated/registered vehicle WITHOUT a valid USAREUR certificate of license. If caught doing so, there are severe consequences.


I am not so sure about this. Can you show us the regulation, please. According to the official website of The Ramstein Air Force Base, what you say is not correct.

Drivers MUST have a U.S. Army Europe license to drive in Germany, no exception. An international driver's license is not acceptable, nor can you legally drive a rental car while you wait for your vehicle to arrive without one.


This quote can be found at the link above, and is the very first thing they say at the top of the page.

6 years, 9 months ago

Quote by DcCow:
Just asked a friend who got their IDL last summer.

Basically, you have to go to the Driver Testing Office on base, they will check your USAREUR DL and give you a filled out and stamped form. You will need to take this form and a passport size photo to your local German District Office (the Driver Testing Office can give you the address).

It cost about €15 and they will give you an IDL that will be good for 3 years (or less if your USAREUR DL is not valid for they whole 3 years).

This beats the AAA IDL's as I believe they are $15.00 and only good for 1 years.

I recommend Calling the Driver Testing Office on base, to make sure the procedures are still current.


Quote by JOFTAA:
I am not so sure about this. Can you show us the regulation, please. According to the official website of The Ramstein Air Force Base, what you say is not correct.



This quote can be found at the link above, and is the very first thing they say at the top of the page.


Army in Europe Regulation 190-1, Chapter 2-1, makes exceptions to the policy, so it is not a hard and fast rule.

6 years, 9 months ago

From HERE:

2-1. LICENSING POLICY

a. Military and civilian personnel and their family members must have a U.S. Forces certificate of license to drive in Germany. This does not include the operation of Government vehicles, which can be operated using OF 346 or Air Force Form 2293. To get a U.S. Forces certificate of license, military and civilian personnel and their family members must have a valid country license (glossary). OF 346 and Air Force Form 2293 may not be used in place of a valid country license to obtain a U.S. Forces certificate of license. The minimum age to apply for a class 3 U.S. Forces certificate of license with a valid country license is 17 (table I-1). Individuals may operate only the class or classes of POVs indicated on their license. Appendix I, paragraph I-2, lists vehicle classifications.

b. USAG commanders and USAFE squadron-level or equivalent commanders may, on a case-by-case basis, grant an exception to subparagraph a above for new arrivals to drive class 3 POVs in Germany without a U.S. Forces certificate of license for up to 30 days when both of the following requirements are met:

(1) The new arrival previously had a U.S. Forces certificate of license or, based on his or her position or age, is considered to be mature and responsible.

(2) The new arrival has a valid U.S. drivers license and an international drivers license or an official German translation (for example, from the Allgemeiner Deutscher Automobil Club (ADAC)) of a U.S. drivers license. Individuals who have lost their driving privileges for any reason will not be granted this authorization; these individuals will be prohibited from driving under any circumstance until their driving privileges have been restored.
c. USAG and USAFE commanders will not delegate the authority to grant the exception to the policy in subparagraph b above. When granted, the written authorization to drive without a U.S. Forces certificate of license must specify--

(1) How long (not to exceed 30 days) the individual is authorized to drive without a U.S. Forces certificate of license.

(2) That it applies to German-plated or Army and Air Force Exchange Services (AAFES) rental vehicles and to POVs that have been properly registered and insured.

(3) That it applies only to the class or classes of vehicles indicated on the individual's U.S. drivers license. This authorization, however, will not be granted for motorcycles.

(4) That individuals must present the authorization to their local DTS so that AE Form 190-1G may be issued for up to 30 days. Individuals must return to the local DTS within the 30-day period to complete testing for a permanent U.S. Forces certificate of license.


Sounds like it can be done, but I'd be willing to bet that getting someone to allow it would be a bit of a chore. The Europe Regulation 190-1 is located here.

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