Driving your car in Italy

By Italian law, it's possible to drive an imported car for six months without changing the license plates. Once that period is over, you may request for another six months of extension in some circumstance. However, generally you will need to export it or convert to national license plates (nationalization). You will incur additional expense nationalize your car. By the end of the first year, you can easily expect $6000 in total from the shipping to the change of plate. If you drive it with your American license plates, keep your registration card inside the car, and bring a copy of the title too just in case.

Driver's License

You may drive up to one year without the need to change your driver's license. While the police enforcement is highly inconsistent in Italy about using a foreign driver license, I learned it the hard way, if you get caught driving in Italy without a translation of your driver license from the U. S., the police may fine you about 80 euros. Although I was not aware of it for a long time and when I was stopped by the police before, no one gave me problem, then another time, I was informed about it and fined.

An Italian translation of a typical U. S. state driver license comes with your purchase of my eBook.

Or you can order an international driver’s permit from AAA by mail, which is essentially a collection of translations. The law in Italy states that a “translation into Italian” is required, not an international driver’s permit.


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