February 21, 2018
So you’ve applied for temporary residency in Slovenia and got a car that you drive every day to work, or perhaps only from time to time on trips, all with your driving permit issued in your home country. Is there anything wrong with this? Not necessarily, as long as your driving licence is from a member of the Vienna Convention on Road Traffic – if not you will also have to carry an international licence in addition to the one from your home country – or, if you’ve been registered as a resident in Slovenia for a year then your foreign driving licence cannot be used here anymore, meaning that after a year of living in Slovenia then you’re basically driving around without a driving licence, and facing a 500 EUR fine for doing so. The exception here are driving licenses issued by other EU countries, which can be used in Slovenia until their expiration date. If you’d like to extend such a driving permit in Slovenia, you will at the same time have to replace it with a Slovenian driving licence.
Apparently, it can occur that traffic police are not informed about this part of the law (you can find the latest version of Zakon o voznikih (Drivers Act) here). Pay special attention to the Article 66 (66. člen), paragraphs 1 and 5: paragraph 1 forbids foreign licence holders to use their licences after being registered in Slovenia for more than a year, paragraph 5 lists the countries exempt from what is stated under paragraph 1.
Anyhow, before you hit one of the deadlines you should apply for a Slovenian licence at the closest administrative office (upravna enota). In Ljubljana, this will be Tobačna ulica 5, where you’ll have picked up your residence permit: make a stop at the waiting room E- Special Traffic Procedures where your case will be examined and you’ll be told what options you have. As you might be able to apply for the replacement on spot, you should take along the following:
- Your foreign driving licence
- One photo for your new document
If you are replacing your driving licence from Croatia or another EU state, or Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland, the replacement procedure is much easier (you will only need the documents listed above), as you do not have to take the driving test in order to obtain a Slovenian version.
Since according to the law, and this pretty much works all across the EU and its associates, one person can only hold one licence, your old licence will be taken away from you and send back to the country that issued it.
Furthermore, a ministerial decree has added some other countries to the list of those which can quickly receive a local driving license, such as Switzerland, Japan, South Korea and Australia.
If you, or rather your driving licence, do not originate from one of these places, then the set of the papers you will have to submit will also include proof of a successfully passed driving test and driving health check. In this case, you will need:
- Your foreign driving licence
- One photo for your new driving card
- Health check
- Driving test
Driving health checks (which will cost you about 40 EUR) are performed by pretty much all clinics, just head to the department for Work, Sports and Traffic Medicine (medicina dela, prometa in športa).
For a driving test, you have to apply to any avto-šola (driving school) in your vicinity. You will not need to take lessons or the theoretical test, and the test is only driving. The cost of the test depends on each driving school, and here is an example of one that offers its services in English.