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Driver License Guide

Once you decide to move to Italy, and if you are not living in big cities such a Milan or Rome that have a wide public transportation network you may also want to have an Italian Drive’s License that is not only recognized in Italy but all over Europe.

Apply to a driver’s license – or Patente Guida in Italian – in Italy is cheaper, faster and less complicated than in other EU or non-EU countries. However, the paperwork or the language can be a challenge, so we at 2Italy put together a list of trusted partners to help along your application and languague learning processes.

More about italian license

To drive in Italy, as in any other country around the world, you will need a driver’s license. An international driving license may suffice temporarily, but if you plan on living in Italy, a local driving license makes things much easier for you. The following is everything you need to know about an Italian Driver’s License, providing some pros and cons of acquiring a local license: 

There are laws to follow in Italy for you to drive here. You can convert an international driving license provided by the EU into a local Italian license. If you are from a select list of countries, you may be able to use your country’s driving license for the first year you are in Italy. 

However, the best way to go is to get an Italian driving license as soon as possible. The law states that you have to renew your driving license, whether an international one or a local Italian driving license. The police might not bother you, but it is always best to follow the law. 

One of the benefits of having a European driver license is that you can easily go on road trips to some of the most amazing places in the world. The international driver’s license Italy is very compatible with France, as demonstrated by the information gathered by Compare the market. This makes exploration and vacations very easy. We recommend you drive along the southern coast of France, stopping off at St Paul de Vence. This enchanting hilltop village has captured the eyes of some of the greatest artists including Picasso.

To get an Italian driver’s license, you will have to go to the autoscuola, the Italian equivalent of a driving school. It will cost you several hundred euros to apply to the school, and it will cover driving lessons, theory classes, taxes, stamps, theory tests, driving tests, and a medical exam. The driving school will also take care of all the paperwork for the DMV. Once you join the school, you can start taking theory classes, which will vary from school to school. You will also need to take practice exams while studying so you can pass the actual exams. Once your teacher feels ready, they will help you sign up for the next exam at the DMV. If you pass, you get a pink slip or provisional driver’s permit.

Your driver’s permit is only valid for six or twelve months, so you will have to pass the driving exams before it expires. You have to take a minimum of six driving lessons to take the driving exam. If you want to pass the exam and get a license, follow the instructor’s directions no matter how good a driver you are. They will teach you the things that will count during the exam. If you pass the driving exam, you will get your Italian driver’s license, which will cost you €136.99. You will be considered a new driver for the next three years, and there will be restrictions. The process is bureaucratic, relatively expensive and can often be slow. 

While there are certainly some things that can be improved in the process of acquiring an Italian Drivers licence, the benefits are substantial due to the number of amazing experiences that are produced due to the amazing Italian countryside. 

Different rules for different situations. A foreigner who moves to Italy and is in possession of a driving license issued by his own country, can request its conversion, recognition or replacement.

Foreign citizens in possession of a driving license issued by an EU country can easily use it in Italy or they can spontaneously request its replacement.

As we have already talked about previously, non-EU citizens can circulate with a license issued by their country of origin for one year from the moment they take up residence in Italy, then they must necessarily proceed with the conevrsion if there is a reciprocity agreement. between Italy and the country of origin, on the matter.

In the event that it is not possible to make the conversion in time or the reciprocity agreement between the two countries does not exist, those who want to travel in Italy with a vehicle must compulsorily request the release of a driving licence in Italy.

The request is made to the Civil Motorization even privately without, therefore having a Driving School as an intermediary.

In addition to the documents normally required for issue:

  • Photo ID
  • Photocopy of an identity document (identity card / passport)
  • Certification of payments due
  • Medical certificate
  • Photocopy of the Codice Fiscale or health card
  • Certificate of residence

Therefore, registration in the registry is mandatory for both EU and non-EU citizens who require the issue of the driving licence in Italy.

Furthermore, non-EU citizens must also provide:

  • The original residence permit and a photocopy


  • original long term CE residence card and a photocopy

If the interested party is waiting for the renewal due to expiry or the first issue of the residence permit, he must present a photocopy of the identity document and:

  • photocopy of the receipt of the first issue request

photocopy of the receipt of the renewal request and photocopy of the expired residence permit.

Driving licenses from European countries are equivalent to Italian ones and there is no obligation to convert. The citizen who acquires residence in Italy, has the right, not the obligation, to request the replacement of own with the Italian one.
If you are a non-EU citize in in possession of a driving license guide issued by a foreign country, you can drive freely in Italy, up to one year from the acquisition of the residence, provided that it also has a sworn translation of the driving license or possess an international driving permit. However, in the case of driving with a foreign license without the sworn translation attached, the Highway Code provides for a penalty for the transgressor Art. 135, paragraph 8 CdS.
One year after registration in the municipality of residence, non-EU citizens can continue driving in Italy only if they change their driving license for an Italian one. In the case of driving with a foreign license more than one year after registration, the same penalty is applied as for those driving with an expired Italian license.
It is important to inquire at the Civil Motorization of the place of residence, because the conversion can only be made for non-EU citizens from countries with which Italy has stipulated an agreement on the matter. It is absolutely essential to always update, because the agreements with individual countries are subject to expiry and they do not necessarily renew themselves.
If the aforementioned agreement was in force at the time you want to submit your request, you can proceed with the conversion which allows you to change your driving license without having to take special theoretical and practical exams.
This can be done at the motorization office of the place of residence using the TT 2112 model.
The conversion application can be submitted only if the foreign driving license is valid.
After submitting the application, the relevant office carries out checks on the documents attached to the conversion request. Upon completion of the investigation, he issues the applicant with an Italian license but withdraws the foreign license.
If the foreign license was issued by a country that has not adhered to the conversion agreement, or the same has expired, the non-EU citizen must compulsorily obtain an Italian license under the same conditions as Italian citizens.
The request for the issue of the license can also be submitted by the foreign citizen pending the first issue or renewal of the residence permit.
After having carried out the theoretical and practical examinations, the relevant Office issues the Italian driving license and withdraws the foreign one which will be returned to the Consulate to which it belongs.

You can do your license convertion by yourself at your city transportation office (motorizzazione) or with the assistance of a Driving School. Or if you intend to do the course you can choose among english speaking schools that assist foreigners. Some below.

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