Motorcycle license in France


I’m working on getting a reciprocal driver’s license. That is, a driver’s license from the US, from Massachusetts, a state that France allows people with a driver’s license from that state to get a French driver’s license. My license has an allowance for driving a motorcycle, and I’m hoping that this allowance would also carry over onto the driver’s license I obtain in France. Does anyone know if this is the case?


Your French licence should cover you for all the categories that you are eligible to drive. It’s a big plus having a licence issued by a state accepted by France.


When I exchanged my UK licence I wanted to keep all the categories I had (not including motorbike) so had to have a medical. Not sure why and it was never adequately explained by the dragon, sorry fonctionnaire, at the Prefecture.

It was a simple blood pressure, eye test examination and the paperwork/writing the cheque took longer.

I have all my categories so I imagine you should be able to do the same.

I found this, it may help.

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Thanks for your responses regarding your experiences and suggestions!

It will probably take a while before I can register a vehicle in my name; I’ve been reading posts on SF and wading through the documentation about eligibility. I really appreciated the step-by-step process described in another post on SF. By the way, how do I put in a link to that post, as a reference? I feel a bit silly asking as I am usually pretty tech-savvy. Do I just copy and paste something into this post, to make it a link? Hope that makes sense…

Anyway. I will be sure to update with my progress on getting the France driver’s license. Also, I will keep you posted on progress toward eligibility for purchasing/leasing a car or motorcycle in France (but I figure this won’t happen until later on next year.) Hoping to find other ways to get groceries, in the meantime. Good opportunity to make friends with the neighbors, I guess! :sunny:

I can’t over-emphasize how helpful SF posters’ progress reports on stuff like this, has been. Cheers.

You’re very welcome Mary.

With regard to linking another post what I usually do (and there’s probably an easier way) is have this post open in one tab and then open SFN in another tab and find the post I want to link. Then I just copy and paste that link into this post. Not sure I’ve explained that properly or not.

If you can’t do it then just make a comment on the other post and it will come to the top of the list and I will do it for you if you want.

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GD group4

Please amend your Registration to give Full Name as per our Terms and Conditions.

If you are not sure how to do this… simply put your Full Name on this thread and I will amend it for you…


Think you might have the wrong thread Stella?!


No his comment was there.

He has left the building… and taken his posts with him…

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Just updating my experience with getting the license.

I’d submitted the paperwork successfully back last fall in person in Angouleme at the Préfecture office there. In preparation for submitting the application and documents, I’d had to have my US driver’s license translated into French, and obtain a history of my driving record with an attestation from the US registry of motor vehicles. I submitted these and some other documents including handing over my US drivers license (now, due to Covid19, the ANTS site states that one can do this application online, at: .

I received an email on July 6 from the Centre d’expertise et de ressources pour les certificats d’échange de permis de conduire étrangers, Préfecture de Loire-Atlantique (, stating that my application had been received, all papers were in order, and I’d be receiving the license by the post which I’d need to sign for upon receipt. The email also included a NEPH which is a reference number if I wanted to contact ANTS in the meantime. I was also able to set up an ANTS account (which I’d tried to do back before March but hadn’t had success…).

I just received the license by mail, today. It states that I can drive: AM, A1, A2, B1, and B vehicles which are mopeds, small motorcycles, small trucks, and cars.

Here’s the rub: my US drivers license states that I can operate any size motorcycle. However, my France drivers license only states that I’m allowed to operate up to A2 level motorcycle: up to 40 BHP. That’s a shame, since I ride a Suzuki V-strom 650cc (70 BHP) nowadays. So…the French drivers license doesn’t allow me to ride the V-strom.


For now, until I (hopefully) get this updated to ‘A’ status for all sizes of motorcycles, I guess I’ll have to carry the US drivers license, the France drivers license, the translation of the US drivers license to French, and any documentation with ANTS about the process to obtain ‘A’ status.

That’s my story for now. I’ll update with any info that’s pertinent to this saga. Onward.

My word, Mary… thanks for the update… keep fighting the good fight… :relaxed: :relaxed:

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