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Q: How do I drive legally in China?

I have a UK driving licence. What are the steps that I need to take in order to drive here legally?

 

Does my UK driving licence help my cause?

 

I also live in Shenzhen. Are the rules here different for things like this? Sometimes rules are different from city to city, so thought I'd check.

 

Thanks

9 years 43 weeks ago in  Transport & Travel - Shenzhen

 
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Comments (12)
Posts: 2632

Emperor

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why would you???  you would be the only one to drive legally!!!

BHGAL:

http://english.gz.gov.cn/publicfiles/business/htmlfiles/gzgoven/s9069/index.html#ent_03

9 years 43 weeks ago
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blaineholloway:

Because I respect Chinese laws and I don't want to be kicked out of the country. I know there's a way to do it, so my question is more of a shout out to people that already have so they can give me a step-by-step guide on how to do it.

9 years 43 weeks ago
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Hugh.G.Rection:

The only one?  I have a legally acquired Chinese driving license. I don't see any reason for wasting 1 - 5k on bribes when there is a perfectly good legal means.

9 years 42 weeks ago
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9 years 43 weeks ago
 
Posts: 2418

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I drove every day in China for 6 years without a license.  Never got stopped.  Never got a ticket.  And never had an accident.

 

My basic philosophy is I respect Chinese laws as much as Chinese people do.

crimochina:

2 thumbs down? these must be the same people who say "when in rome..."

9 years 42 weeks ago
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9 years 43 weeks ago
 
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If you have a valid foreign driver's license, you can go to the proper authorities with it, your passport some photos, and must get yourself a Chinese name to place in the local driver's license, your foreign name will not do. 

Once there, you take a written test (you must be under 60 years of age), pass a physical, and get your local license.  The written test is basically 100 questions, you must answer t least 90 correctly to pass.  They may have one in English, if not bring a translator to help you understand questions and also to select right answers.

 

Good luck to you

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9 years 43 weeks ago
 
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If you got connections then you can your license easily....not that difficult........even without connections you can still get your license but maybe it will take you a bit longer;

HappyExPat:

Be aware, not all connections or bribes will give you a real driver license.  Many friends paid 1,000 yuan for one in Shenzhen, just to be stopped by police and hen checked in computer there was no back up information, their licenses were a fake.

9 years 43 weeks ago
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Createach:

Not if your Gf is in the PSB and her father is a leader there.

9 years 43 weeks ago
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9 years 43 weeks ago
 
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The going rate for drivers licenses here are 5000 Yuan. This is then a service where the correct people at the drivers license office are paid off to fake the thing all the way so it will in fact be the real drivers license. Or so they say.....

The actual cost for getting the drivers license the real way is way cheaper. Sure it will take some time, but that is all part of the China expirience. 

981977405:

I have often heard this said ... so perhaps where there is smoke, there is a fire.

9 years 43 weeks ago
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hiddenjelly:

Actually what they do is pay a bribe to the testing officer to allow someone else to take the exam. Don't know why you would bother, I mean 5000 or 300 just to not study a little!

9 years 42 weeks ago
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9 years 43 weeks ago
 
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You need to take a computer based theory test. Be aware, despite the very low driving standards in China the theory test is every bit as difficult as the UK one, also getting hold of the computer based answers, (so you can practice) is not easy, it took me a good 3 months of 1 hour a day before I was happy to try and take the test. You can take the test in English, (just tell the clerk when booking your test), but, of course, the signs will still be in Chinese where appropriate.

Scandinavian:

the language in the computer based test is not much better than what Goggle Translate can do. 

9 years 42 weeks ago
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Hugh.G.Rection:

I don't know; the one I took about 18 months ago in Nanning was okay, the English wasn't perfect but easily understandable.

9 years 42 weeks ago
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9 years 42 weeks ago
 
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I hear what you're all saying, like "take it to the proper authorities" and "take the computer-based test", but where? how? What do I do first to get me on that track?

 

How do you even contact the proper authorities in Shenzhen? It's not as if there's a Citizen's Advice Bureau like in the UK, or a Yellow Pages directory.

Hugh.G.Rection:

Each city has a "traffic control department of the public security organ " (that is cut and pasted from my theory bank questions) that is where you take the test.

 

I will cut and paste the Chinese question I took that from and hopefully in there it will have the Chinese name for the place you need as well.

 

公安机关交通管理部门对累积记分达到规定分值的机动车驾驶人

 

Hope that helps.

9 years 42 weeks ago
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cooter:

Dude, the easiest thing is going to have a Chinese friend take you there directly.  You might as well have them also accompany you to the local police department to get your temporary housing registration form, to the hospital for the eye exam, and to the place to have your UK license professionally translated into Chinese (must be done by a professional company, with a stamp!).

 

Don't forget, you will need a residence permit with at least 6 months left on it.  Other visa types will not qualify you to apply for a Chinese driving license.

 

And BEFORE ALL OF THIS, you should find the list of 1400 or so questions you need to study.  The test you take will randomly select 100 questions from this pool, and you need to score 90 or better to pass.  Your best bet is to just memorize them verbatim.  In a big city like Shenzhen, they're most likely going to make you take the test in English on a computer, so you won't be allowed any "translation" help during the test.

9 years 42 weeks ago
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9 years 42 weeks ago
 
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You have three options:

 

A: Visit an agent who will process everything for you, you do ZERO! (approx. 6000rmb)

B: Visit an agent who will HELP you to process the papers, you take the test! (approx. 4000rmb)

C: You visit your housing management office and take a letter that states you live there, second you need to get a police form that says you live in China (the one you're supposed to do within 48hrs). then you get your driving license, passport, visa, and a Chinese name of your choice notarized, next you get the paperwork and go to the hospital for an eye exam. Lastly you take all of your documents and pictures to the driving test center in your city and pay the appropriate fee. Book your test and good luck! if you fail you have another go, if you fail twice you need to repay the test fee (around 80rmb for 2 go's). (approx. 300rmb)

 

Good luck, most people have already posted links so I won't bother.

 

Also for the test if you have an iPhone/iPad then get "China Drive" it has all the questions and mock exams on it. It is a wonderful app and the questions are worded the same as the test, the answers in the app are also in the same order as the real test too! Pay for it and you'll pass!

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9 years 42 weeks ago
 
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If you keep the car off the sidewalks, you are golden.

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9 years 42 weeks ago
 
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Shifu

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very simple take your d/l from the country u are from take the written test its 100 questions in english u have to score a 90 out of 100 and u will recieve your d/l and you dont have to have a chinese name on it good luck

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9 years 42 weeks ago
 
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Well i don't know about other cities, but this is what happened for me. Had copies of my Visa ( must be resident type for here ), UK drivers license, temporary resident papers, and of course data page of your passport, translated into Chinese at a place notarized by local government ( there are many ) whilst that is being done, popped along to a local driving test place ( you know the place, cos there will be 400 maroon and yellow VW cars outside it ) and registered with them as a foreigner wishing to take the test. All this took about a week, about 600 kuai spent, NO MEDICAL at all, the training center got me the theory book ( useless unless you can read Chinese ) and a CD which is all of the book in ENGLISH!! As others have said, you need to get 90 out of the 100 questions correct to pass, multiple choice answers...YOU must be present and on cam to do this, the translation is poor, but don't care about it, just get the answer they want....i took this test twice and scored 89 both times, then the last time i scored 94.....10 days later a nice Chinese license with C1E on it ( car and motorbike ) The days of paying a person to do it a pretty much gone, and the other options of using an agent is not great either as it will usual involve you going to another city to do it. 

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9 years 42 weeks ago
 
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Sorry, HERE is Foshan.

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9 years 42 weeks ago
 
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Yes, you DO have your Chinese name on it, mine does. Infact, where i did my test, after passing you must sign the print out of your scores in Chinese, so get practising your name!! I also should mention, you are allowed to take the test twice in one visit, after you have answered the 100 questions it will give you your score. You will also be given the questions you got wrong, obviously if more than 10 come up you have failed. If you fail both times, you must wait a minimum of 10 days before you can do it again. As i said, this is for Foshan.

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9 years 42 weeks ago
 
Posts: 2735

Shifu

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take a written test a driving test get your photo taken pay them in cash and expect to receive your new chinese license in a matter of days. Finished! Now go now or forever hold your peace!!!

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9 years 42 weeks ago
 
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