USA Reciprocal Drivers License process

Kim…no need to be so condescending and feel that you needed to correct me on an issue from 6 years ago and not relevant to applying to today and nothing to do with EU/UK…
I was mistaken (memory…I think I mentioned that…) and I applied in 2018 with all comms via ANTS. End of discussion.

Not condescending @monti. Kim is one of our most valuable resources on here on all matters concerning driving licences particularly international drivers applying for French licences.

She is officially in contact with the French authorities in this area and has made representations to them - officially - on behalf of groups of international drivers, particularly the British but not just.

From time to time she pops in to SF from the Facebook group she runs on these topics always to our benefit.

If Kim states a fact it’s always a fact.


@monti - no need to be so rude when people are giving up their time to help you with your problem. Please lighten up and show some appreciation…


I hope you don’t mind me pointing out that that’s not good when one is giving advice Monti. You also mentioned an International Driving Licence when no such thing exists. One has to be careful not to give people, however inadvertently, a bum steer.

We know Kim knows what she is talking about when it comes to licenses (and I’m sure other matters too :slightly_smiling_face:), her advice is sound and can be trusted.

There are many chatty threads on this forum which are fun, but I think it is important to differentiate between chatty and advice. Or at least when giving advice that one may not be totally sure of, because that can be valuable too, caveat it. :slightly_smiling_face:

I would expect to be corrected if I’d given false information, and be grateful for the correction, rather than getting snippy and accusing someone who knew the subject well of being “condescending”!

A brief “Oops - sorry” is all that’s needed!

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Thank you for all your helpful information!
How often do you think this list of states change? Or in other ways how likely would a state fall off of this list? I noticed that Kansas is no longer on the list for example. Wisconsin being new to the list, would it likely to be dropped from the list soon after joining?

Hi Claire, you are right it was originally on the list in 2012, but when and why it was removed unfortunately I cannot say.

Other than Wisconsin and UK now being added these are the only changes in the last 6 years that I am aware of.

There are a couple of US states that are trying to negotiate being included, they are New York and Vermont.

I can’t see anyone dropping off now as when the list was put together first time around I don’t think as much due diligence went into it, therefore some have dropped by the wayside.

Do you have a Winconsin licence, if yes I think you’ll be fine.


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Hi Kim, Thank you so much! That’s really good to know. We live in Minnesota but are thinking about moving to Wisconsin for a few month prior to leaving for France, so we have some time to sell our house.

I’m sure Kim will give you a definitive answer but is there a minimum period which a licence has to be held before it can be exchanged?

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Hello Claire, if you have the opportunity to exchange your licence for a reciprocal one, then yes absolutely do it.

You will need the history even though it will only be a few months and the history for your old licence, only the licence you are exchanging needs a reciprocal agreement, your history makes no difference.

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Good question!

If it’s an EU licence or a different country then yes, but because Claire has a US licence and is exchanging it for another US licence, it sort of slips through the system, regardless that it’s a different state.

Although, the longer you can hold the licence the better.

Thank you again Kim! That’s really reassuring to know. I also heard that a full driving history some times may be of help with the car insurance pricing too.

They want to know when you passed your test as it’s a date on EU licences, so if you don’t have evidence of that far back get as much history as you can, 10 years is good enough if the rest is difficult, you can write an attestation to say you are unable to get further history but you are happy for your licence to start from the dates you can evidence, words to that effect.

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