iStudentCity - Settling Down Stage Welcome to

Cheap Flight Tickets & Hotels

Social Security
Phone Service
Grocery Shopping
Health & Safety

  Privacy Policy
  Terms & Conditions
Driver's License and ID Card

The U.S. has no official language, but most people who will need to check you identity only read English. Getting a state driver's license or ID card can save you time and energy.

Public Transit | Driver's License | Buying a Car | Auto Insurance | Renting a Car | Driving Safety Tips
While your passport can be used as identification in most situations, you don't want to have to carry it everywhere. The best form of identification to use in everyday transactions is a driver's license or identification card issued by the state in which you live. If you want to be able to drive, get a license; otherwise, an ID card should be enough.

A driver's license is your better choice if you ever expect to drive in America, even if you don't plan to buy your own car. Unless the situation requires you to show your passport, a license is a valid form of identification. An identification (ID) card can be used in all of the same situations as a driver's license except for those in which you must prove that you are a legal driver (e.g. renting a car).

Applying for a Driver's License or ID Card:

The application process and requirements for a driver's license varies from state to state, so check with the appropriate agency in your state for details. In order to get a license, there are some things you will have to do regardless of where you live:

  • Written driving test
  • Vision test
  • Road test

Make certain you have all of the documents that your state requires for identification before you go to get your license, or you will have to come back a second time.

Like the process for getting a driver's license, applying for an ID card requires that you go to your state's licensing division with appropriate identification. However, you won't need to take any of the driving tests. Usually the cost of an ID card is around half of the cost of a driver's license, but both are fairly inexpensive.

Driver's License

We recommended that you obtain a driver's license if you expect to drive or purchase a car in the U.S., even though the driver's license from your home country may legally allow you to drive while you are here. A driver's license is also the most common form of identification used in America. Before applying for a driver's license, you must first obtain a social security or taxpayer ID number.

To get more information about your states department of licensing, select your state from the menu below and click "Go."

State Identification Card

If you have no immediate need for a driver's license you can still apply for an identification card (ID) at the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). ID cards can be used as identification in place of a driver's license.

To obtain a driver's license or identification card, you may go directly to your local DMV office. To locate the DMV office closest to you, please use our DMV locator. Calling for an appointment before going will save you some time. Be sure to bring these items with you to the DMV office:

  • Your passport
  • I-94 issued by the Immigration and Naturalization Services (INS) which is valid for 60 days from the date of application (you received this when you entered the country at the airport)
  • I-20
  • Social security card.
  • The application fee.

The Written Test

Before you take the written exam, you should carefully study the handbook (each state publishes its own) which explains the rules of the road. The content of the questions asked on the written exam is taken directly from the handbook. These handbooks are available upon request at the DMV.

Note: Sometimes the exam handbook is available in several languages. Furthermore, in some areas, the test is offered in languages other than English, by special appointment.

The Road Test

You must take the road test, which is the actual driving test, before you can get your license. An examiner will accompany you on the driving test, so you should be familiar with the car you are driving when you go to be tested. You must show proof that the car is properly registered and insured. If a friend will lend you his or her car for the test, that is fine. Otherwise, you will have to make other arrangements.

If you pass the test, you may receive your permanent driver's license right away, or in a few weeks or months, depending on where you live. If you don't get your permanent driver's license immediately, you will be issued a temporary driver's license.

The Vision Test

Along with the road test you must take a vision test. Be sure to wear your prescription glasses or contact lenses, if you have any, to the exam.

Note: For the spouse of an international student to obtain a driver's license, he or she must present his or her F-2/J-2 papers.

Public Transit | | Buying a Car
Online banking
Do you know that you can earn much more interests by putting your money in online banks. It's save and convenient. Learn more about online banking...
Logo 120x60
Gift Shop 120x30

Home | About iStudentCity | Job Opportunities | Contact iStudentCity Hall
Copyright©2000-2009, All Rights Reserved.