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Driving in NJ with UK license

Driving in NJ with UK license

Old Mar 24th 2021, 9:18 pm
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Default Driving in NJ with UK license

I am looking at leasing a car very soon however I am struggling to get an appointment to even start getting a NJ license (initial permit). I had one cancelled and since been unable to book another anywhere in the state.

Since I moved 6 months ago from NY, I assumed I could not drive as only the first 60 days from a move are allowable. However I also read that "The M.V.C. has taken the position that a person who has a valid license in their home country, may lawfully operate a motor vehicle in New Jersey under that license ... for a period of no more than one year."

International Driver’s Licenses : New Jersey Traffic Law Center

Does anyone know if this is accurate for 'non-tourists'?
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 4:08 am
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

As long as you are not NJ resident you should be OK.
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 10:51 am
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

Originally Posted by Boiler View Post
As long as you are not NJ resident you should be OK.
He is a NJ resident.

OP the answer to your question is no. You are a NJ resident and have been so for months, you must get a NJ DL.

Now would you be cut a break if you were pulled over because of the current situation? Perhaps, but that is taking a chance.
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 11:28 am
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

Originally Posted by Tino View Post
I am looking at leasing a car very soon however I am struggling to get an appointment to even start getting a NJ license (initial permit). I had one cancelled and since been unable to book another anywhere in the state.

Since I moved 6 months ago from NY, I assumed I could not drive as only the first 60 days from a move are allowable. However I also read that "The M.V.C. has taken the position that a person who has a valid license in their home country, may lawfully operate a motor vehicle in New Jersey under that license ... for a period of no more than one year."

International Driver’s Licenses : New Jersey Traffic Law Center

Does anyone know if this is accurate for 'non-tourists'?

Have you tried to get insurance or attempted to buy/lease a vehicle without a NJ DL? If I remember correctly obtaining insurance was the reason we got our NJ DL within the first few days of landing. This was 25 years ago and it may have changed now. Insurance was the main problem...car dealers in NJ cannot legally hand over the vehicle without proof of insurance.
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 1:58 pm
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

Originally Posted by Jerseygirl View Post
Have you tried to get insurance or attempted to buy/lease a vehicle without a NJ DL? If I remember correctly obtaining insurance was the reason we got our NJ DL within the first few days of landing. This was 25 years ago and it may have changed now. Insurance was the main problem...car dealers in NJ cannot legally hand over the vehicle without proof of insurance.
No have not started either yet.
I've now been able to get an appointment in South Jersey late next month for initial permit - ironically a 1.5hr drive away.

The process as I understand it is:
  1. Initial permit - next month
  2. Schedule knowledge test - can only be done after received initial permit
  3. After knowledge test - another appointment to get full license based on UK driving license?
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 2:10 pm
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

  1. Initial permit - next month
  2. Schedule knowledge test - can only be done after received initial permit
  3. After knowledge test - another appointment to get full license based on UK driving license?
When I got my NJ license precovid, I managed to do 2 and 3 in the same trip. But it took hours and hours and the staff there (Newark) didn't really seem to know how to handle it. Make sure you tell everyone you speak to that you have a foreign license as they won't assume that you have. Also make sure you have your 6 points (and a few more in case they don't like some).
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 2:48 pm
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

Originally Posted by Tino View Post
No have not started either yet.
I've now been able to get an appointment in South Jersey late next month for initial permit - ironically a 1.5hr drive away.

The process as I understand it is:
  1. Initial permit - next month
  2. Schedule knowledge test - can only be done after received initial permit
  3. After knowledge test - another appointment to get full license based on UK driving license?

We went through the process in 1996. We had a multiple choice test, then had to hand over our UK DLs. That was the difficult part because I refused to hand mine over. After saying they had no right to take it as it belonged to the Queen of England, they finally gave in.

Find out from your employer if they are a member of NJ Manufacturers. If so I recommend you get insurance through them. They are known throughout NJ as the very best.
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 3:01 pm
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

After saying they had no right to take it as it belonged to the Queen of England, they finally gave in.
That's passports, not DLs

DLs still belong to the DVLA.
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 3:10 pm
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

Originally Posted by civilservant View Post
That's passports, not DLs

DLs still belong to the DVLA.
Yes but I knew they wouldn’t know that. Before becoming USCs we were leaving the NJ on a cruise. As we didn’t have a US PP, the people at the Royal Caribbean check in desk, said they were required to hold our UK PPs until we returned. I trotted out the same old and they eventually handed my UK PP back.
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 6:12 pm
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

Originally Posted by Jerseygirl View Post
We went through the process in 1996. We had a multiple choice test, then had to hand over our UK DLs. That was the difficult part because I refused to hand mine over. After saying they had no right to take it as it belonged to the Queen of England, they finally gave in.
Maybe times have changed but in NY there's no benefit of holding a UK driving license. You still have to go through the same hoops as if you didn't have a driving license.

And so why would you even disclose that you have a UK driving license? I certainly did not as I need the UK driving license to be able to drive manual cars when I am visiting the UK.
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 6:17 pm
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

New Jersey is the only (?) state that takes a foreign license in place of a road test https://www.state.nj.us/mvc/driverto...oncitizens.htm

After you get the permit, visit any Driver Testing Center to take a vision test, knowledge test and possibly a road test if required.
I assume they base that on which country your license is from
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 6:29 pm
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

Originally Posted by destone View Post
... I need the UK driving license to be able to drive manual cars when I am visiting the UK.
Sixt, Hertz, and Avis let me rent and drive cars with manual transmissions in the UK and Ireland with just my California driving license. I didn't need to use/show my UK driving license.
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 7:15 pm
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

NJ doesn't take your UK DL from you, they just look at it and let you skip the road test.

I've also used my US license to rent manual vehicles in the UK so that's not a thing either.
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 7:33 pm
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

Originally Posted by Olly_ View Post
NJ doesn't take your UK DL from you, they just look at it and let you skip the road test.

I've also used my US license to rent manual vehicles in the UK so that's not a thing either.
They don’t now, but they used to.
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Old Mar 25th 2021, 7:52 pm
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Default Re: Driving in NJ with UK license

Originally Posted by cautiousjon View Post
Sixt, Hertz, and Avis let me rent and drive cars with manual transmissions in the UK and Ireland with just my California driving license. I didn't need to use/show my UK driving license.
Interesting. I use Zipcar extensively when I visit London, and they specifically prohibit manual cars for those with US licenses. And Zipcar (both their US and UK operations) is owned by Avis.
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