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Bekki_jane

Driving in the US

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Hi all,

Hoping you can help me please :)

I am a UK driving license holder, however what steps do I need to take for driving In the US?

I have seen there is an option to pay £5.50 for an international drivers permit but there is so many conflicting stories I am confused to say the least!

If anyone could help I would really appreciate it

Thanks in advance,

Bex

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Sort of depends on your state and your DMV. With a valid European license and an international license you should be permitted to drive in the US for a period of time. Some places say you can get a US license but it would only be valid until your I-94 expires (since you are a K-1). My hubby came on a K-1 and was given a four year license. I don't know if it was an oversight on the part of the person who tested him or if that is the norm for Kentucky.

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Hi Bex,

You will be fine to use to UK DL for a short period after you're arrival in the USA, I've always just used my UK DL and never had an issue not even shown it at DUI check points with LAPD. I would suggest against the IDP as for example I know the state of CA doesn't regard the IDP as a valid DL. I have read that once you become a resident you should apply for a state issued ID, normally you are regarded a resident after residing there for a period of 30 days or more.

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There is no US standard -- every state has their own laws, so simply go to your state's department of motor vehicles website, and it will spell out exactly what you need to do. For example, we were living in NJ when my wife immigrated from Costa Rica, and several things were clear form their website:

1) The international drivers license was meaningless in NJ, so no reason to get one

2) Since she was over 18 and had driven for more than two years with a Costa Rica license, she did not have to take a driving test

3) She did, however, have to take a written test, and she could take it in any of several languages -- she used Spanish of course

Separate subject, but we later moved to Texas, and her NJ license plus green card was all we needed to switch from a NJ license to a TX license -- no written test, no driving test

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Hi all,

Hoping you can help me please :)

I am a UK driving license holder, however what steps do I need to take for driving In the US?

I have seen there is an option to pay £5.50 for an international drivers permit but there is so many conflicting stories I am confused to say the least!

If anyone could help I would really appreciate it

Thanks in advance,

Bex

Bex--

An International Driving Permit gives no authorization to drive in the US. It is basically a translation into many languages of your UK driver license information. If you plan to drive in France, it would be useful for the gendarmerie to have the French translation. Since US law enforcement officers speak English, they will have no problem reading your UK license which is also in English. Any reference you read that one is required in a particular state is probably addressed to those holding a foreign license in a language other than English.

In the US, each state has different requirements. The general theme of most states is--

You must show legal presence, usually the EAD card is your first opportunity to show that

You must show residence in that state with a utility bill, bank statement, etc in your name or your spouse can sign vouching for you and showing his residence.

You must have a SSN

You must take a written and driving test

You may drive as a visitor for a certain period of tome.

There are variations in the above depending on the state.


England.gifENGLAND ---

K-1 Timeline 4 months, 19 days 03-10-08 VSC to 7-29-08 Interview London

10-05-08 Married

AOS Timeline 5 months, 14 days 10-9-08 to 3-23-09 No interview

Removing Conditions Timeline 5 months, 20 days12-27-10 to 06-10-11 No interview

Citizenship Timeline 3 months, 26 days 12-31-11 Dallas to 4-26-12 Interview Houston

05-16-12 Oath ceremony

The journey from Fiancé to US citizenship:

4 years, 2 months, 6 days

243 pages of forms/documents submitted

No RFEs

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~~moved to moving here and your new life in America from general immigration discussion as topic isnt about immigration~~


You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.  - Dr. Seuss

 

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My experience moving from the UK to Virginia was that I was fine to use my UK DL to drive for 1 year, with no need at all for an international permit.

But to BUY a car in Virginia, the car dealership informed me that I did need a U.S. DL. They let me buy a car, and they started the state registration process, but I was required to obtain a Virginia DL within 1 month to complete the registration.

Fortunately, U.S. driving tests are a lot easier than the UK one. Mine amounted to answering a few onscreen questions, then taking the practical test involved me changing lanes twice, stopping at a red light, turning right, stopping at a Stop sign - and then hearing that I had passed. No reversing. No parallel park. Nothing.

So I'd say go ahead and don't worry about it too much. Go to the DMV and take your test when you need to, but definitely don't stress about it. If you're a good UK driver, you should have no problems in the U.S.

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Fortunately, U.S. driving tests are a lot easier than the UK one. Mine amounted to answering a few onscreen questions, then taking the practical test involved me changing lanes twice, stopping at a red light, turning right, stopping at a Stop sign - and then hearing that I had passed. No reversing. No parallel park. Nothing.

I really bloody hope my test is that easy, because omg, driving. What a nightmare! I miss getting the bus everywhere :cry:


ROC from CR-1 visa (Green Card expiration date was Nov 24th 2016)

 

Link to the evidence I submitted. Be sure to send evidence spanning your entire marriage (especially for K-1) or as far back as you can. Just one or two bank statements will not cut it. I primarily focused on the two years of living here since I came in on a CR-1. If you don't have the fundamentals (i.e. joint accounts/policies), you can explain why in the covering letter. E.g. "While we do not have joint utilities, we both contribute to them from our joint bank account".

 

September 26th 2016: I-751 package sent to CSC

September 28th 2016: Package delivered
September 30th 2016: Check cashed
October 3rd 2016: NOA1 received with receipt date of 09/28/16
November 3rd 2016: Biometrics received with appointment date of 11/14/16.
November 14th 2016: Attended biometrics appointment
October 30th 2017: Infopass appointment to get I-551 stamp
February 26th 2018: I-751 case number (aka the NOA1 receipt number) becomes trackable
March 14th 2018: Submitted service request due to being outside of processing time.

March 15th 2018: ROC approved. 535 days (1 year, 5 months and 17 days)

March 29th 2018: Card being produced

April 4th 2018: Card mailed out

April 6th 2018: Card in hand. Has incorrect "resident since" date. Submitted service request on I-751 case (typographical error on permanent resident card) and an I-90 online.

April 2018 - August 7th 2018: Tons of service requests, emails and now senator involvement to get my corrected green card back because what the heck, USCIS

August 8th 2018: Card in production thanks to the direct involvement of Senator Sherrod Brown's team

August 13th 2018: Card mailed

August 15th 2018: Card in hand with correct date. :joy:

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I really bloody hope my test is that easy, because omg, driving. What a nightmare! I miss getting the bus everywhere :cry:

Yeah, I know what you mean. I lived in London for 13 years and never even owned a car. That's not a realistic option in the U.S., even in the biggest cities.

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