25 August 2006
Foreigners are allowed to continue to use their original driver’s license up to 1 year after arriving in New Zealand. Then they need to get a New Zealand driver’s license. Because New Zealanders drives in the left lane, most tourists and newcomers better would be forced to take driver’s lessons immediately on arrival.
A new license sounds worse than it is, because we only had to do the theoretical test. When we trained ourselves in answering the 200 questions at home, we simply walked into the AA office on a quite day. An appointment was not necessary. Our eyes were tested right on the spot and a new photo was taken with a camera screwed on the desk.
Then we sat down at a table with one of those anti-crib-screens between us. We didn’t need to bring a pen, because to answer the 40 multiple choice questions we had to scratch off. So, already during the test I knew I had zero errors! The exciting scratch card sentiment was even reinforced, because the AA office is located in a corner of the festive showroom of a car dealer.
I wrote that the New Zealander is practical. Another example of this, is the donor problem; If you want to drive legally you are also old enough to know if you want to be an organ donor, and your decision is immediately printed on your new license. The license looks like a credit card.