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Driving a vehicle registered overseas

This information will help you if you are driving a vehicle that is registered overseas - whether you are visiting temporarily or have recently become a permanent resident.

Applying for an international visitor's permit

Visitors travelling in a vehicle that is registered overseas need to apply for an international visitor's permit to drive the vehicle in South Australia.

An international visitor's permit cannot be issued until the vehicle has arrived in Australia and a compulsory third party insurance fee will apply for the period the vehicle is to be used in Australia.

Complete an application for an international visitor's vehicle permit at a Service SA customer service centre.

You will also need to provide evidence that the vehicle has entered Australia legally. The following documentation may be used as evidence:

  • carnet - a customs licence permitting motorists to take their cars to various countries
  • triptych - similar to a carnet, but valid for one trip only
  • bond - a document lodged with Australian Customs Service.

Registering an overseas registered vehicle

New residents wishing to drive an imported vehicle in South Australia must apply for a licence and register the vehicle within three months of moving here permanently. An imported vehicle must be registered in South Australia before it can be driven on the road.

A vehicle previously registered overseas must satisfy the following requirements for registration in South Australia:

  • an Import Approval Letter provided by the Australian Government Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development
  • a roadworthy inspection and paperwork is required to ensure the vehicle complies with Australian Design Rules
  • an identity inspection is required to ensure the vehicle is not stolen.

After the vehicle has been inspected you can apply to register the vehicle at Service SA customer service centre by providing:

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Page last updated 8 September 2017

Provided by:
Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure
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