Can you buy a car when you are 16?

That's what all teenagers dream of: to finally get their driver's license. However, the age of the driver's license is regulated differently around the world. Here you can find out at what age you can drive a car abroad.

Europe: full driving license only from 18

  • Germany: A driver's license can be acquired from the age of 17. Up to the 18th birthday, driving is only allowed with an accompanying person who is older than 30 years. This must have had a driver's license for 5 years. And must not be drunk.
  • Austria, Belgium, Spain, Norway, Sweden: Up to the age of 18, novice drivers must put up a sign with the inscription "L17" (driving authorization with 17) in the vehicle. The requirements for accompanied driving are similar to those for us.
  • Netherlands, Switzerland, Croatia, Greece, Italy, Denmark, Finland: Minimum age 18 years
  • France: From the age of 16, novice drivers are allowed to drive after 21 hours of driving and having passed the theoretical test - but only when accompanied by an adult. The full driver's license is only available at the age of 18.

North America: Graduated Driver Licensing from 14

Driving a car in the USA

Since the 50 states of the USA determine the age for the driver's license themselves, it is a little more complicated there: First you get it Driving license on trial. Graduated Driver Licensing is the name of the 3-tier system that most states have in place.

  • It starts with the Learner’s permit, with which novice drivers are only allowed to drive when accompanied by an adult. The ages vary from 14 to 16.
  • Then comes the Intermediate Licensewith which you can drive without an accompanying person. However, certain requirements must be complied with. For example, limited going-out times, no cell phone use in the car and only a certain number of passengers.
  • Full privilege license (unrestricted driving license) is the name of the last stage at which the novice driver must have reached a certain age. It is between the ages of 16 and 18 and differs from state to state.

Driving a car in Canada

In Canada, the age for applying for a driver's license is 16. The licensing phases differ in the individual provinces.

Australia and Asia: When can you start driving?

  • Australia: It is allowed to get the driver's license at the age of 16. The full driver's license can be obtained at the age of 18. In between, novice drivers have to attach various learning badges to the car.
  • Japan, Russia: The age limit for the driver's license is 18 years.
  • Middle East and many Asian countries: Driving license only from 18
  • Israel: Driving license from 16 years and 9 months

Africa and South America: full driving license often from 18

Africa: In most African countries, the minimum age for a full driver's license is 18 years. You can often drive with a beginner's license as early as the age of 17. In Zambia you can even drive at 16. Another exception is Niger, where you have to be 23 years old.

South America: In most countries, the age limit is 18.Exception: In Colombia, the driver's license is already available from 16.

Are you traveling abroad and would like to drive a car there?

Danger: In many countries, the German driving license is not sufficient. Then you need one international driving license.

  • Within Europe: In addition to the German driving license, the international driving license is recommended in Albania, Moldova, Russia, Ukraine and Belarus.
  • Outside of Europe: The international driver's license is required for most countries.

The right insurance for your vacation abroad

  • Foreign health insurance: An accident while on vacation or a sudden illness abroad is annoying. Recovery is impaired for the time being. To make matters worse, a visit to the doctor incurs additional costs. The solution: a foreign health insurance. It will reimburse you for all necessary medical, hospital and transport costs for the first 8 weeks of your trip.
  • Private accident insurance: A private accident insurance protects you against the financial consequences of an accident. Worldwide, also in case of accidents while traveling.

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