Converting your Indian driving license into a German one

Let us explain you the procedure to get a driving license in Germany if you already have a driving license from India.

Dr. Paras Mehta
Dr. Paras Mehta

So you would like to drive in Germany, but are not sure how to get a driving license?

In our previous post (see link below), we explained how to get a new driving license in Germany. In this article, we will show how get your India driving license "converted" into a German one.

Getting a driving license in Germany
This is the first in a series of two articles. Here, we give a step-by-step explanation for applying for a new driving license in Germany. Next week, we’ll explain how to get your Indian driving license “converted” into a German one.

But what if you already have an Indian driving license?

And you ask yourself: Do I have to do everything all over again?🙄

No and Yes. Not everything but it's also not just possible to keep using your Indian driving license in Germany.

So let's have a look at how that works.

First things first: You are allowed to drive with your Indian driving license for 6 months in Germany. After that period of time, you have to convert it into a German driving license.

Converting your Indian driving license to a German one (Umschreibung)

If you already have a driving license from India or from another country outside of the EU, you don't need special theory and practical driving lessons again, BUT you have to take both the theoretical and the practical tests. It is up to you if you want to take some driving lessons with a teacher before the test to make sure that you're ready for it.

But, before you can do the tests, you have to do some paperwork. Did you expect anything else? 😜

So, what is the procedure?

You have to file an application at the responsible authority of your place of residence. This can be the district office (Bezirksamt) or the road traffic department (Straßenverkehrsamt).

Here are some links for some of the major cities in Germany:






This is a list of documents usually needed. Please verify if anything else is requested in your city.

  • Personal ID or Passport
  • Biometric passport picture
  • Driving license and a copy of the driving license
  • Translation of the driver's license - Order Certified Driver's License Translation
  • Proof of residence (Meldebescheinigung)
  • First aid certificate
  • Eye test certificate

Important: After your application is approved and you have passed both the tests, you have to surrender your Indian driving license to the road traffic department to get your new  German license. You can only get your Indian one back, if you give back the German one. So it's not possible to keep both.

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Dr. Paras Mehta

Software developer and data scientist PhD FU Berlin | Marie Curie and Erasmus Mundus fellow | BTech DTU | Visiting Researcher Cambridge

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