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German Driver's Licenses in South Africa

Ein EU-Führerschein schaut aus einer Hosentasche raus.
EU-Führerschein © picture-alliance/ dpa

According to the Vienna Convention on Road Traffic, German driver's licenses are accepted in South Africa if the holder of the license has only temporary residence. However, German driver's licenses are issued in the German language only and indicate the different vehicle classes in a coded form. In our experience, South African authorities will nevertheless accept the German driver's license when presented with an English translation done by a German Mission in South Africa.

If a person has or obtains permanent residence in South Africa, they must apply for a South African driver's license.

Translations of Driver's Licenses

Your German Mission offers to issue a sealed translation of your driver's license with additional explanation of the different vehicle classes.

Please bring:

  • Your driver's license
  • Your passport
  • Fee

In Case of Loss

You lost your German driver's license in South Africa? You should first make a police report about the loss or theft at the closes police station.

German driver's licenses are only issued by local authorities in Germany. Please contact your license department at your place of (last) residence. German Missions abroad cannot issue driver's licenses or any other kind of replacement.

Detailed information on how to obtain a replacement can be ascertained at your local license department.

Conversion of old German Driver’s Licenses

All German driver’s licenses issued before 19.01.2013 have to be converted within a certain deadline. The deadlines are staggered and depend on the issuing date of the driver’s license as well as on the date of birth of the license holder.

The earliest end of the deadline is 19.01.2022 for all, who were born between 1953 and 1958 and whose license was issued before 01.01.1999.

Information Sheet “Staged Conversion of Drivers Licenses”

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