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Greece – Driving Licenses

Greece is a popular destination for tourists, and many of them choose to rent a car and explore the country on their own. To drive legally in Greece, foreign nationals need to have a valid driving license. This article will cover the rules and regulations, agreements in place for license exchange, procedures for obtaining and renewing driving licenses, recognition of International Driving Permits, and the penalty system for motoring offenses in relation to driving licenses in Greece.

General Rules for Foreign Nationals in Greece

Foreign nationals who hold a valid driving license from their country of origin can use their license in Greece for up to six months. After six months, they must obtain a Greek driving license. This applies to all foreign nationals, regardless of the country of origin.

License Exchange Agreements in Greece

Greece has agreements in place with several countries that allow foreign nationals to exchange their driving license for a Greek one without taking a driving test. The countries that have such agreements with Greece are the EU member states, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein. This exchange applies only to certain categories of licenses, and the license exchange procedure depends on the country of origin. Foreign nationals from countries that do not have an agreement with Greece must take a driving test in Greece to obtain a Greek driving license.

Obtaining and Renewing a Driving License in Greece

To obtain a Greek driving license, foreign nationals must take a written and practical driving test. The test is conducted in Greek, so foreign nationals who do not speak the language may face difficulties. The cost of obtaining a driving license in Greece is approximately €200.

To renew a driving license, foreign nationals must provide the following documents:

  • A valid passport and visa
  • The original Greek driving license
  • A medical certificate issued by a Greek doctor
  • Proof of residency in Greece

The renewal process is straightforward and usually takes no longer than a day. The cost of renewing a driving license in Greece is approximately €25.


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Relevant Government Departments or Agencies

The Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport is the government agency responsible for regulating driving licenses and road safety in Greece. Foreign nationals can obtain more information on driving licenses in Greece by visiting the ministry’s website at https://www.yme.gr/.

International Driving Permit Recognition in Greece

An International Driving Permit (IDP) is recognized in Greece. However, it is not a substitute for a valid driving license. Foreign nationals who plan to drive in Greece must have a valid driving license and an IDP if they plan to drive for more than six months.

Penalty System for Motoring Offences

The penalty system for motoring offenses in Greece is strict, and fines can be significant. The penalties for motoring offenses are as follows:

  • Speeding: Fines range from €40 to €350, depending on the speed at which the offense was committed.
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol: Fines range from €200 to €1,200, and the offender’s driving license can be suspended for up to six months.
  • Driving without a valid license: Fines range from €300 to €1,200, and the offender’s vehicle can be impounded.
  • Reckless driving: Fines range from €200 to €1,200, and the offender’s driving license can be suspended for up to six months.

It is worth noting that the penalties for motoring offenses in Greece are subject to change, and foreign nationals are advised to keep themselves informed of any changes in the penalty system.

In conclusion, foreign nationals who plan to drive in Greece should obtain a Greek driving license if they plan to stay in the country for more than six months. Greece has agreements in place with several countries that allow foreign nationals to exchange their driving license for a Greek one without taking a driving test. However, if a foreign national’s country of origin does not have an agreement with Greece, they must take a driving test in Greece to obtain a Greek driving license. The process of obtaining a driving license in Greece involves passing a written and practical driving test, which is conducted in Greek. Foreign nationals should also be aware of the penalty system for motoring offenses in Greece, which can be significant. The Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport is the government agency responsible for regulating driving licenses and road safety in Greece, and foreign nationals can obtain more information on driving licenses in Greece by visiting the ministry’s website at https://www.yme.gr/. It is important to note that driving in Greece can be challenging, especially on narrow roads and steep hills. Therefore, foreign nationals should exercise caution and be aware of their surroundings while driving in Greece.


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