Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Driver's License!

Yesterday I took my road test for a driver's license. If you plan on being in Norway for more than a year, and driving, it is required to switch your driver's license. The rules are different depending on which country you are from. Some folks from EU countries need only trade their license and pay a fee. Americans are not required to take a written test, but must pass a road test. I understand that it because many Americans have trouble with roundabouts.

Navigating the system was a challenge. I needed to register at the license office, then contact a driving school and arrange for a car. They arranged the testing time. Because it is a busy time of year, I had to wait 6 weeks to get my exam. I signed up for the optional "warm-up time" with an instructor, 30 minutes of driving around. I was skeptical of the warm-up time, not sure if I needed it after having driven for 27 years, but I was glad I did it. The car was a brand-new manual BMW with a sensitive clutch, and the instructor gave me lots of tips which came in handy during the exam.

The test was a 45-minute road test, driving through the country, neighborhoods, highway, and city. The weather was gorgeous, and when we got out in the country with the winding roads and beautiful fall colors, I wanted only to roll down the windows and put the pedal to the metal... but I restrained myself and drove the painstakingly slow 60 kmh (about 37 mph).

I passed. "Helhet OK!" the examiner wrote ("Entirely OK!"). Final cost of car rental, warm-up time, road test, and license fee: about 2800- kr. After all the stress of figuring out what I needed to do, the money doesn't even matter. I've got a license from one of the strictest countries in the world, an international license which allows me to drive anywhere. Woo-hoo!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this important information. I will take my test tomorrow and those tips make feel better. Thanks to the driving test I discover this nice blog, I have almost one year living in stavanger and I feel identify with all coments and nice pictures and explanation you post, they are very usefull and funny, I enjoy it!