Moving to Luxembourg has some quite interesting hurdles. One of them is getting your driver’s license. You can drive with your original license but must apply for a Luxembourg license within 12 months of arrival if you are a non-European citizen. If you don’t get it before one year of residency you have to pay big bucks to take a driving class and test. So, at the beginning of June I started my quest for the Grande-Duché de Luxembourg Permis de Conduire.
You must get quite a few documents together and it is quite a feat.
First I made an appointment with my general practitioner and friend Dr. Nana Ikoko. You need a health certificate (certificat médical). It is a pretty in-depth exam and you pee in a cup to make sure you don’t have diabetes. It will take about 30 minutes and cost €60, which is not reimbursed.
Next I made an appointment with the American Embassy for an Affidavit that states that I haven’t had a criminal record within the last five years. Since the embassy is only open one day a week in the afternoon during the summer, I was lucky to get an appointment only a week later. This was actually the most time-consuming part of the process. I arrived at the embassy with an appointment. Myself and three other people had to wait outside for 15 minutes for them to let us in.
We went through a medal detector and then were escorted by a security guard to the administration office. Once there we had to wait an additional 15 minutes for the lady to come back from lunch. When it was my turn I went up to the window and was asked if I had a criminal record and put up my hand to swear upon it. After one minute of basic questions I was back in the waiting room waiting for the signed Affidavit, which took another 10 minutes. There is no official background check by the embassy, just your word. I was then escorted back to the entrance and was on my way. It took about an hour and cost €50.
The next day I was off to Bierger-Center in the city center. Here I needed to take a ticket and wait my turn, thankfully only 10 minutes. Here I needed to get a certified copy of my driver’s license front and back and a Certificate of Residence (Certificat de Résidence), as well as a copy of my Carte d’identité (Luxembourg ID card) and a copy of my passport. This only cost a few euros.
Just a five minute walk is the Cité Judiciaire, where I received the Bulletin No. 2 Casier Judiciaire that showed that I had no criminal record in Luxembourg.
I rounded out the day with the last piece of documentations, a photo. I drove to Photo Nett at Belle Etoile Mall where it only took 20 minutes to get my photos. The photos cost €14.
Now that I had all my paperwork I downloaded the Demande en obtention d’un permis de conduire (application form), which is available in French and German. This outlines all of the paperwork you need. I went to the SNCA in Sandweiler the next day. Here you take a ticket and wait your turn. I only had to wait around 20 minutes. I gave them all the paperwork and purchased the Timbre de Chancellerie (tax and admin fee) for €33.
Less than a week later I received a letter stating that my license was ready for pick-up. Since it was a busy summer for me I waited until the kids were back in school. It took two minutes to get my new Luxembourg license today. The grand total for my new license was €160.
Here is a list of documents you need:
- health certificate from your doctor in Luxembourg, which is no more than three months old
- affidavit from your Embassy
- certified copy of the front and back of your current driver’s license, (if this is not in French, German or English you must have it legally translated before applying)
- certificate of residency, less than one month old (Bierger-Center or your commune)
- passport picture (45/35mm)
- Photocopy of your passport of Luxembourg ID
- your police record of good conduct from Cité Judiciaire
- driver’s license request form Demande en obtention d’un permis de conduire
- tax stamp (timbre de chancellerie), available at SNCA when you apply