Recognition of nonresident licenses; foreign visitors
A non-resident operator shall be considered licensed or permitted in Vermont if the nonresident driver has complied with the laws of the foreign country or state of his or her residence relative to the registration of motor vehicles and the granting of driver's licenses or learner's permits. For the full text of the statute, see 23 V.S.A. § 208.
In addition to any other requirement of law, a non-resident shall not operate a motor vehicle on a Vermont highway unless:
- They hold a valid license or permit to operate a motor vehicle issued by another U.S. jurisdiction; or
- They hold a valid license or permit to operate a motor vehicle from a jurisdiction outside the United States and:
- is 18 or more years of age, is lawfully present in the United States, and has been in the United States for not more than one year; and
- they possess an international driving permit.
For the full text of the statute, see 23 V.S.A. § 601
1949 Road Traffic Convention & 1943 Inter-American Automotive Traffic Convention
A foreign visitor from one of the countries or territories listed herein may legally drive on the roads of the State of Vermont on his or her own country’s license (limited to a licensed driver who is at least 18 years old, legally present in the U.S. and limited to a vehicle of the type covered by the license) for up to one year from the date of arrival. The visitor may operate his or her own private passenger vehicle if displaying valid license plates from the visitor’s country (and meeting insurance standards set by the state of Vermont if operated over 30 days) for up to one year from the date of arrival.
A licensed driver from one of the countries listed herein must carry a valid International Driving Permit in addition to their valid home country license[ii]. Permits are available, for a fee, from certain automobile associations but can only be issued in the country the applicant is coming from. An International Driving Permit does not confer any driving privileges but is translated into ten major languages of the relevant information on the driver’s home country license.
CAUTION: Vermont does not recognize as valid any document purporting to be an "International Driver License" or any other document that confers driving privileges unless issued by the government agency that issues such licenses in the driver's country of residence and the driver is validly licensed.
- Bahamas, The
- Central African Repub.
- Congo, Democratic Rep.
- Costa Rica*
- Côte D'Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
- Czech Republic
- Dominican Republic**
- El Salvador*
- France (including French Overseas Territories)
- Gambia, The
- Georgia (Rep. of)
- Guyana Haiti**
- Hong Kong (but not mainland China)
- Ivory Coast (See Côte D’Ivoire)
- Korea, Republic of (South)
- Kyrgyz Rep.
- Macao (but not mainland China)
- Netherlands (also applies to Netherlands Antilles, and Aruba)
- New Zealand
- Papua New Guinea
- Portugal (applies to all Portuguese territories)
- Russian Federation
- St. Lucia
- St. Vincent and the Grenadines
- San Marino
- Sierra Leone
- Slovak Rep.
- South Africa
- Spain (applies to African localities and provinces)
- Sri Lanka
- Syrian Arab Republic
- Taiwan (Republic of China)
- Trinidad and Tobago
- United Kingdom (Great Britain and Northern Ireland, also applies to Cayman Islands; Gibraltar; Bailiwick of Guernsey; Isle of Man; and States of Jersey)
- United Arab Emirates
- United States of America**
- Vatican City (Holy See)
- Vietnam, Rep.
- Western Samoa
NOTE: Until further notice, licenses from the following former republics of the USSR and countries of the Baltics should be honored:
* Party to 1943 Int.-Am. Conv., at Washington, DC
** Party to 1943 Conv. and Party to 1949 Conv. at Geneva
In accordance with the 1968 Convention on Road Traffic (Article 45 (4)) and the 1949 Convention on Road Traffic, ARTICLE 37 Distinguishing sign of the State of registration.
(a) Every motor vehicle in international traffic shall display at the rear, in addition to its registration number, the distinguishing sign of the State in which it is registered.
(b) This sign may either be placed separately from the registration plate or be incorporated into the registration plate.
An International Driver Permit (IDP) is essentially an English translation of a foreign language driver's license issued by a foreign country.
These permits can only be obtained in the country that issued the actual license.
Students and Visitors to Vermont: An IDP is not considered a valid license. It must accompany a valid foreign license. Vermont permits a student or visitor to operate a motor vehicle in Vermont for a period of up to one year with his or her foreign license. If the license is in a language other than English, the license must be accompanied by an IDP, which serves as an English translation of the foreign license.