Russian driver's licence

Exchanging your driver’s licence in Moscow

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If you're living in Moscow long-term, you may need to exchanging your foreign driver’s licence for a Russian driver’s licence to legally drive in Moscow.

Exchanging your foreign driver’s licence for a Russian driver’s licence is a reasonably straightforward process in most cases, involving sitting a theoretical test.

Expats in Moscow are permitted to drive using the driving licence issued in their native country for the first six months after arriving in Russia. However, if you are driving in Moscow you must have your licence translated and notarised by an official translator and it is advisable to also purchase an International Driving Permit (IDP).

If you are staying in the country beyond six months, you will be required to take a Russian driving test. Like many other European countries, there are both theoretical and physical parts to the driving test in Russia. However, as long as your licence is still valid in your home country, you will only have to take the theoretical test and not the physical driving test. Bear in mind that both are conducted solely in the Russian language so you may need to bring a translator along to assist you.

In addition to taking the theory test of 20 multiple-choice questions, exchanging your licence for a Russian one will also require you to provide documentation including:

  • Passport
  • Valid visa
  • Medical certificate
  • National driving licence
  • Notarised translation of driver’s license into Russian

To apply for a licence, you will need to visit the local GIBDD office (the Moscow Road Police) situated at 15 Delovaya Street in Moscow.

Should you opt to have an International Driving Permit, which is a translation of your licence into nine languages, to accompany your national licence, you will need your licence, a 35mm x 45mm photograph, a medical certificate, a form of identity and proof of address.

The legal age for driving in Russia is 18 years, meaning you will be unable to drive on Moscow roads until that age even if you have attained a full national licence at a younger age in your home country.

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