French people who are temporarily staying (less than 90 days) in the United States are allowed to drive with their French driver’s license. When they have a residence permit in the United States, they must at the end of this period, obtain a US driver’s license by passing the examinations provided for by local legislation (medical examinations, code and conduct).
If they arrive, already in possession of a “green card”, no delay is allowed, no driving without a California license.
Be careful, you have to go to get your license with your own vehicle accompanied by someone who already has the license or driving with your French license.
For any information, please contact Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). The waiting lines are long, but you can pass the code without an appointment, in the language of your choice, and start again up to three times in the same day!
The driving test on the other hand is by appointment and you are exempted if you have already obtained a driver’s license in another state of the United States.
Obtaining a driving license in the United States is not expensive ($36 in January 2019).
The permit provides you with an official ID that allows you, for example, to travel on domestic flights.
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