How to Get Your Driver's Licence in Belgium

Published: 13 Feb at 11 AM
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Filed: Driving,Belgium

Local Expert Series: Get your Driver's Licence in Belgium by Barbara

If you’re thinking of obtaining your driver’s license in Belgium, you need to remember that the process here is a bit unusual. First of all, good news for those whose French or Dutch is not strong enough- you can take courses in English, and many other languages.

The theory classes take place at the driving school of your choice. You need to take 20h of theory (140 euros) after which you should be able to pass the theory test. FYI, if you feel like you don’t need the teacher’s explanation, you can study the theory at home. The school can usually provide the books with road code.

A driving school in Belgium
A driving school in Belgium
When you’re ready to take the theoretical exam, you need to book it at the Test Centre in Schaerbeek. If you want to do it in English (25 euros), the waiting time can vary, and can up to a month. Even though you booked your theory test to be in English, the questions on the PC screen are in French (or Dutch, depending where in Belgium you’re doing it). The translator (50 euros) is in the room & they translate each & every question out loud. Some people complain that the success rate depends on the skills & pronunciation of the translator. This is true to a certain extent, but I wouldn’t focus on that too much.

After you’ve passed the theory, you can start driving around the city. If you’re lucky, and you have someone around you who’s been a driver for a minimum 8 years, you can ‘use’ them as your guide. No need to pay for the practical classes at your driving school (cost: 105 euros per 1.45min class).

If you don’t have anyone like that though, you need to book driving classes with an instructor. The bare minimum is 10 driving lessons after which they will tell you if you’re ready to drive on your own, or not. If you’ve done your 10 lessons, but you feel like you’re still not fully confident about driving, you can ask for some additional classes with your teacher. The driving schools do it all the time, so this shouldn’t be a problem.

Finally, the teacher gives you a document which states that you’re ready to drive & that you’re not a hazard to other road users. Only then you’ll be able to go to the commune to obtain your provisional driver’s license. It normally takes about a week or so to get it, and it costs about 8 euros. Don’t forget to bring 2 color pictures of yourself & your theoretical exam results too.

The provisional license gives you the right to drive on your own or with company (excluding kids, pregnant women) for the period of 18 months. After that, or before, if you feel ready, you can take your driver’s exam in order o obtain the final driver’s license.

If you fail your driving exam twice in a row, you’ll need to book 6 extra hours with your teacher.

About the author

Local ExpertBarbara is Polish born & raised, living in Brussels, Belgium with her Spanish fiancé. Every day is a battle between at least 3 languages for them: French, English and Dutch. In this crazy multi-cultural world, their friends are no surprise- everyone happen to come from a different country. Isn't it all too complicated? Not at all! Barbara loves her Bruxelloise life and wouldn't change it for anything else! Her blog is called Brussels Life Beauty and is about all those things and more! Check it out for regular posts and discover Brussels with Barbara!

If you have anything to add about your own experience relating to this article, or perhaps have a question for Tatiana please leave her a comment below!
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Comments » There is 1 comment

Germain wrote 11 years ago:

Can I transfer and surrender my New York license and forgo the driving school?

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