Driving licence in Pattaya
(Assistance Fee: 3,500 Baht)
Before driving in Pattaya be sure you have either a Thai international driving license if you are allowed to hire a car on your original license from your home country be sure that the insurance covers you.
Driving in Pattaya can be very frustrating, especially on holiday weekends, don’t expect to be anywhere fast, tailbacks can be hundreds of meters long. Another problem is parking unless you are going to a large shopping mall or another complex you will struggle to find a parking space.
Driving in Pattaya, or any large city in Thailand is best done defensively, remember that the standard required to obtain a driving license in Thailand is not as high as most western countries.
Below is a list of things to watch out for when you are driving in Pattaya, for more concise information on the Thai highway code, including Thai road signs and road markings, traffic police hand signals, etc, use this link, it’s well worth a look and will be big help when you are driving in Pattaya:
– Motorbikes cutting in front of you as they weave through traffic.
– Motorbikes passing on the same side you are indicating to turn.
– Large vehicles generally assume right of way.
– Motorbikes emerging from junctions ‘usually from a smaller road or street’ without looking.
– If an oncoming vehicle flashes their lights at you, it usually means ‘I am not stopping’.
Can I get a Thai driving Licence?
If you’re a group, a family, or you just want an easy and uncomplicated way to reach remote places and attractions in Pattaya, chartering ( hiring ) a vehicle and driver for your own private use is both practical and relatively cheap.
If you wish to drive legally in Pattaya and throughout Thailand, you can obtain an international driving license/permit, normally from your country of residence, but if plan on staying longer than 3 months you are better advised to get a Thai driving license.
Don’t be put off though, it is quite easy to get a Thai driving license in Pattaya. Having a Thai drivers license has other benefits as well, you can use it as i.d, and you can get some discount entrance prices in some of the tourist attractions. However, there are a number of main roads in Pattaya that makes exit and entry into the city an easy task for foreign drivers. Important facts that foreigners must bear in mind while driving in Thailand include the following:
– The maximum speed limit within the city is 60km/h while the speed limit on the expressways ranges from 90 km/h to 120km/h. Police officers check car drivers frequently for their speed limit.
– o drive-in Thailand, you must have a valid national or international driver’s license. The international license or permit must be translated into English. The driver must be at least 21years old.
– Drivers are required to drive on the left-hand side of the road.
How do I get a Thai driving Licence in Pattaya?
Follow the instrustions below:
Do you have problems by not knowing what you need to change your drivers’ license to a Thai drive license? Here we are to help you find the answers.
1. Medical Certificate- You can get this at just about any hospital or clinic. It will cost about 50-100 baht. It’s not a thorough examination. If you have a pulse, you pass.
2. Residence Certificate or Work Permit- It will take 2 weeks, but is processed for free. Bring 2 passport photos, a copy of your rental agreement or proof of address, passport, and a copy of the TM30 form with your landlord’s signature (a form all hotels and apartments need to submit when taking in foreigners). You’ll need to hand over signed photocopies of all the important pages in your passport too: info page, current visa, latest entry stamp, embarkment card, 90-day reporting card (if you have it). You might as well make 2 copies of all these pages because you’ll need them again at the Land Transportation Office. If you have a valid Thailand Work Permit already, the Land Transportation Office accepts this as a proof of address, so you can skip getting a Residence Certificate. This will save you a bit of time.
3. Passport- As stated above, you’ll need to hand over copies of all the important pages in your passport: info page, current visa, latest entry stamp, embarkment card. You should, of course, have a valid non-immigrant visa.
4. Valid Driving License or International Driving Permit- The whole process will be much easier if you have a valid driving license from your home country or International Driving Permit. If the license is not in English, then you’ll need to get a translation from your embassy. You’ll need photocopies of the front and back of your license or copies of all pages of an International Driving Permit.
How long does an international driving Licence last?
You can use an International Driving Permit as a tourist, but if you’ve been in the country for 60 days or more then you are supposed to get a Thai driving license. Having a valid driving license from your home country will make the process of getting a Thai driving license go faster because you won’t be required to take the theory or practical( driving) exams.
If you wish to be able to drive both cars and motorcycles in Thailand, then you’ll have to apply for 2 separate driving permits, and you’ll be issued 2 different physical cards, but you can get both done during the same visit (or series of visits) to the Land Transportation Office. If your home country driving license is only valid for automobiles then you will still have to take the written and driving tests to get your Thai motorcycle driving license. If it is your first time getting a Thai driving license, you’ll be issued a temporary permit valid for 2 years. When the first 2 years are nearly up, you can make another trip to the Department of Land Transport and get a regular license which is valid for 5 years.