Thursday, June 30, 2016

Another five years..

Got my driver's license renewed today.  Its good for another five  years.  Somehow I thought the licenses were issued for 10 years, but looking back at my old blog, it was back in 2010 when I got my  last one renewed.

Submit your paperwork here and get a number

The procedure has not changed much.  You will still need to have an affidavit of address issued by the embassy regarding your address or a house book with your name in it.  A lease agreement is not acceptable according to the lady I talked to. You will also need your passport and copies of your passport pages with the right kind of long stay visa endorsements.  Once you have all of that, someone will check out the package and then send you up to the testing center upstairs.

You must sit through a video explaining how to take the tests
At the testing center, you are given a color blindness test, a reaction test, a perspective test, and a peripheral vision test.  I didn't take any pictures of the testing equipment to avoid getting in trouble.  Following that, you will then have to sit through a 30 minute video that includes a bunch of tips and rules plus a collection of horrific accidents pulled from the internet and local CCTV tapes.  It was all in Thai and I was falling asleep in the warm room until the gory accidents shook me back to alertness.    

Sitting through the 30 minute video.
After that, it was a trip down the hall to pay the license fee, and then the license was issued on the spot.  Took a total of 2 1/2 hours including the break to the store. For me, that was great service, considering that one needs to make an appointment days in advance, just to get things done at the California DMV. 

Why go through the trouble of getting a Thai Driver's license?  While its true that an International Driver's license allows one to drive in Thailand (I did that early on), having a Thai driver's license is like having an official ID card.  I can use it in place of my passport almost everywhere and it serves as my id card for most legal business.  If you want to buy a car and insure it, a license is needed.  

So now, I'm good for another five years to terrorize the streets and roads of the land of smiles with my driving.

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