About License

To drive in Japan

You must have one of the following licenses

You must arrange to obtain your Japanese driver's license in advance before driving in Japan. Make sure to study thoroughly and make all necessary preparations before you rent a car.

1. International driving permit (IDP)

Limited to IDP in accordance with the Convention on Road Traffic (Geneva) treaty
*Must present a valid passport

International driver's license
1. Country of issuance
2. Relevant treaty date
*Limited to the Geneva Convention on Road Traffic treaty ratified on September 19, 1949
3. Issuance date
*Permit valid for 1 year from the date of issuance
4. Stamp for the category of vehicle that can be driven
*For details, see the categories listed below.
IDP sample
Categories Vehicle that can be driven
A Motorcycle
B Vehicle of a total weight of 3,500 kg or less and a riding capacity of nine people or less
C Freight vehicle of a total weight of over 3,500 kg
D Vehicle of a total weight of over 3,500 kg or a riding capacity of 10 people or more
E B and C or D above with accessories
About vehicles that seat 10 people or more
Be advised that vehicles that seat 10 people or more, such as Hiace wagon require a stamp for category D above.

2. A non-Japanese drivers license and a Japanese translation

Permission to drive is granted by presenting your passport, license and an official translation of the license if you hold a driver's license issued from any of the countries listed below.

Foreign driver's license
Japanese translation

Translated documents are valid for one year after entry to Japan. You must present your passport to check the date of entry to Japan.The official Japanese translation must be issued by agencies such as each country's embassy, consular offices in Japan or JAF.

3. Japanese driver's license

Make sure the license has not expired.