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Israel – Driving Licenses

Driving in a foreign country can be challenging, but having a valid driving license can make it easier. If you are a foreign national in Israel and want to drive, it is essential to have the right driving license. This article provides information on driving licenses in Israel and the rules and regulations that foreign nationals must follow.

General Rules for Foreign Nationals

Foreign nationals in Israel can use their own driving licenses for up to one year from the date of their arrival. After that, they must obtain an Israeli driving license. However, this rule only applies to driving licenses issued in certain countries.

For instance, driving licenses issued by European Union (EU) countries, the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand are valid for one year from the date of arrival in Israel. Driving licenses issued in other countries may be valid for a shorter period, and in some cases, may not be recognized at all.

Exchanging Driving Licenses

There is an agreement between Israel and several countries that allows foreign nationals to exchange their driving licenses for an Israeli license without taking a driving test. Countries with agreements include the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and some EU member states.

Foreign nationals from other countries will need to take a driving test to obtain an Israeli driving license. It is also important to note that some countries’ licenses cannot be exchanged in Israel.

Obtaining an Israeli Driving License

To obtain an Israeli driving license, foreign nationals will need to follow a few steps. Firstly, they need to pass a written exam that tests their knowledge of traffic laws and regulations in Israel. The test can be taken in Hebrew, Arabic, Russian, Amharic, Spanish, or French.


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After passing the written exam, foreign nationals will need to take a practical driving test. If they pass the driving test, they will be issued an Israeli driving license.

Renewing an Israeli Driving License

Israeli driving licenses are valid for ten years from the date of issue. After ten years, the license needs to be renewed. To renew the driving license, foreign nationals must go through a medical exam to determine if they are fit to drive.

International Driving Permit

An International Driving Permit (IDP) is a translation of a driving license issued in a foreign country. It allows the holder to drive in countries where their driving license is not recognized. In Israel, an IDP is recognized and can be used in conjunction with a foreign driving license.

Penalty System

If a foreign national is caught driving without a valid license, they can be fined up to 1,000 ILS (approximately 300 USD). If they are caught driving with an expired license, they can be fined up to 500 ILS (approximately 150 USD).

The penalty for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs in Israel is severe. The first-time offender can be fined up to 11,000 ILS (approximately 3,300 USD), and their driving license can be suspended for up to three years. Repeat offenders can face even more severe penalties, including imprisonment.

Foreign nationals in Israel can use their driving licenses for up to one year from the date of their arrival. After that, they must obtain an Israeli driving license. Some countries’ licenses can be exchanged without taking a driving test, while others require foreign nationals to take a driving test. Israeli driving licenses are valid for ten years and can be renewed after a medical examination. An IDP is recognized in Israel and can be used in conjunction with a foreign driving license. It is essential to follow traffic laws and regulations to avoid penalties and stay safe while driving in Israel.


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