Acquiring a Bolivian Drivers License

Tourism | Driving in Bolivia | Plan Your Trip | Expat Services

Getting a Bolivian drivers license is not immensely difficult. Minimally, you must be 18 years of age and a legal resident of Bolivia. If you are planning to apply for a driver's license while you live in Bolivia, you can begin the application process as soon as you have been awarded legal residency.

You must also speak enough Spanish to properly drive a vehicle in Bolivia, take any required written tests and courses, abide by all traffic laws, and understand all road signage. Not speaking Spanish in no way exempts you from knowing and upholding the law while driving in Bolivia.

Get a Driver's License in Bolivia

If you already have a driver's license from your country of origin, or if you have an international driver's license, you must present it when you apply for a Bolivian license.

• The first step in your application process for a Bolivia drivers license will be to view the list of requirements to obtain or renew a driver's license on the official website of the SEGIP (Bolivia's Personal Identification Service).

Click on "Emisión Documental" (document issuance) on the top menu

Then click on "Extranjeros" (foreigners)

Then click on "Licencia de conducir de cortesía" (courtesy driver's license).

There you can view costs (costos), a list of all the documents you must gather and present (requisitos), and the driver's license application procedure (procedimiento) step by step.

• One of the requirements is to have 3 photographs taken with a gray background and they must be 3.5 cm x 4.5 cm in size. These can usually be done at any local photography shop.

• Once you have all of your documents and have obtained a receipt from the bank as proof of having deposited the correct amount due into the SEGIP's bank account (you won't pay anyone cash directly), then you will head back to your local SEGIP office (Servicio General de Identificación Personal), a national identification issuance office. There you will purchase a form (kardex) which you will fill out and place into a folder, which you must also purchase, along with all other documentation you gathered.

• SEGIP personnel will review your file and will determine whether or not you fulfill all requirements to obtain a Bolivian drivers license. If you do, they will instruct you to go to the back and deposit the required payment into their account (this is done to prevent corruption by ensuring government workers don't take any payments themselves).

• If the SEGIP should determine that you have not complied, they will notify you of their observations (observaciones) and will tell you what you need to do to rectify the matter. Once you do, it will be issued.

• Typically, the Bolivian drivers license contains your full name and surnames, your date of birth, your nationality, your address, your fingerprint, your ‘carnet’ number (a Bolivian I.D. card you will get when you become a legal resident), and the type of driving you are allowed to do (cars, motorcycles, trucks, buses, private vehicle, commercial vehicle, and so forth). It will also contain an expiration date. Check this date before accepting and signing for the license.

• Your next step will be to ensure you have the proper car insurance for the vehicle you plan to drive.

The information for this article was gathered at the police station (tránsito) and the SEGIP in Santa Cruz, Bolivia and updated in May 2019. Click here to see the list of requirements to obtain or renew a driver's license on the official website of the SEGIP (Bolivia's Personal Identification Service). Once again: click on "Emisión Documental" on the top menu, then on "Extranjeros" and then on "Licencia de conducir de cortesía".

Tourism | Driving in Bolivia | Plan Your Trip | Expat Services

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