Licenses are obtained from the Department of Land Transport which has Land Transport Offices (LTOs) through out Thailand.  The initial license will initially be for a two year period and subsequently for five year periods. The license will expire on the holder's birth date.



As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department of Land Transport ceased issuing or renewing Thai driving licenses for a few months. This created a huge backlog.

Since reopening the LTOs, all applicants must obtain an appointment at the LTO. Foreigners must visit the LTO in person to make the appointment. Banglamung is limiting the number of foreigners processed to 20 per day (half at 10am and half at 2pm), thus you can expect an appointment date to be one or two months from the date of the visit. 


PROCESS: To obtain or renew a Thai Driving License, in addition to watching a video, all have to take one or more of the following tests:

  • Color blindness (usually required)
  • Reaction Time (usually required)
  • Depth Perception (may be required)
  • Peripheral Vision (may be required)
  • Written Examination (new applicant or if license has expired more than 1 year)
  • Practical/Driving (new applicant or if License has expired more than 3 years)

To avoid taking a written and driving test, a foreigner must have an International Driving Permit (IDP) along with their unexpired foreign driving license  OR a photocopy of the unexpired license certified as valid by your Embassy [check with your Embassy to see if they will certify a photocopied document, e.g., the US Embassy will not do so].

PHOTO: After the fee is collected, your photo will be taken for the license.

TYPE: A separate license is required for vehicle (car, van, pickup) and motorcycle.

RENEWAL: Can be done up to 3 months before the expiration date.

Caution if renewing an expired license at Banglamung (Pattaya) LTO - Many license holders have gamed the system by allowing their license to expire   before applying for a renewal. Since it expires on their birth date and the renewal will expire 5 years from their next birth date, this makes it almost a 6 year license. Consequently, Banglamung LTO is currently requiring both written & driving test be done before renewing the expired license if done right after the expiration date.

Obtaining a replacement for a lost driving license requires the same documentation and  fees needed for renewal PLUS a police report - however, you do not need take any examination (physical, test, driving) - expect the process to take at least one hour or more at Banglamung Land Transport Office.



FOR PCEC MEMBERS - One of our Members offers a once monthly assistance trip for Club Members (current membership card) to the Land Transport Office. It usually takes place on the last Wednesday of the month.

When a trip is scheduled, the date is published in the Club's Weekly Newsletter.

NOTE: Currently, no assistance trips are being scheduled due to the LTO's present requirement to visit and obtain an appointment.


DOCUMENTS REQUIRED

When applying for your first Thai driving license, you will receive a Temporary License good for two years. It can be replaced up to 3 months prior to expiration date with a five year license provided you hold a Non-Immigrant Visa or extension of stay based on having such visa.

TIP: Upon receipt of your new license, look it over before leaving the LTO to be sure everything is accurate (your current address will be on the reverse side below the Restrictions section, but it will be in Thai script, so unless you read Thai script or have a Thai with you, about all you can verify is the house/unit number and postal code).


Initial Two Year License

  1. Photocopy of Passport pages showing identity and visa/visa extension stamp
  2. Photocopy of a Valid Thai Work Permit - required only if you have one and it shows your address (if using, have your tax ID No. Available as they will ask for it) OR
    Original Certificate of Residence (see below)
  3. Original Medical Certificates not more than 30 days old (see below)
  4. To Avoid Written & Practical Tests: Photocopy of unexpired Driving License from your country of residence (if you have one) including the reverse side if it contains any information (have original to show to the LTO staff) plus photocopy of International Driving Permit (IDP) - have original to show to the LTO staff- OR an original Embassy Certification letter.
  5. Fee for Car License of 205 Baht and/or Fee for Motorcycle License of 155 Baht


Initial Five Year License

  1. Photocopy of Passport pages showing identity and visa/visa extension stamp
  2. Photocopy of a Valid Thai Work Permit - required only if you have one (if using, have your tax ID No. Available as they will ask for it) OR Original Certificate of Residence (see below)
  3. Original Medical Certificates not more than 30 days old (See below)
  4. Photocopy of two year Driving License (front & back) have original to show to the LTO staff
  5. Fee for Car License of 605 Baht and/or Fee for Motorcycle License of 355 Baht


Renew Five Year License


  1. Photocopy of Passport pages showing identity and visa/visa extension stamp
  2. Photocopy of a Valid Thai Work Permit - required only if you have one (if using, have your tax ID No. Available as they will ask for it) OR Original Certificate of Residence (see below)
  3. Photocopy of previous five year Driving License (front & back) have original to show to the LTO staff
  4. Fee for Car License of 605 Baht and/or Fee for Motorcycle License of 355 Baht

Medical Certificate

The Certificate is required for obtaining the two year license and initial five year license. It is not required for renewal of the five year license. 

Most clinics and hospitals have the blank forms. Go to one of them and tell them you need a medical certificate for getting a Thai driving license.

In the smaller clinics you will most likely hand them the fee and they will hand you the completed and signed form with no examination. Some clinics and hospitals may do a very cursory examination. The fee will vary with the normal fee being from 100 to 300 baht.

Residency Certificate

If you do not have a Work Permit that shows your current address, you will need to obtain a Residency Certificate from Thai Immigration OR your Embassy. 

If obtaining from other than Chonburi (Pattaya)  Immigration, the requirements may vary. It is reported that Bangkok Immigration will not issue the Residence Certificate unless you have at least one 90 day address report on file. Also, there are reports on various websites that some Immigration Offices may take several days or weeks to issue the Certificate or refuse to do it at all. The fees can also vary from free to 500 baht (largest amount we have seen reported).

Click the button below for Chonburi (Pattaya) Immigration

ResidencyCertificate



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