If you're a non-resident student coming to our province, you don't need a B.C. driver's licence if:

  • you hold a valid out-of-province licence
  • you are registered as a full-time student in B.C.
  • you're attending one of the specified educational institutions in B.C., and
  • for the duration of your stay, you remain a full-time student (full-time is generally defined as 60 per cent of a full course load).

When driving, you should always carry and be able to show proof of student status (such as your B.C. student ID card), a copy of your Canadian Study Permit (IMM 1442) and proof of your registration in a full-time program at an accredited school when asked to do so by a police officer.

If your licence is not in English, we recommend that you obtain an international driving permit (IDP). If you're unable to obtain an IDP, it's recommended that you get a language translation (if applicable) of your driver’s licence from an ICBC Approved Translator. The IDP or translated driver’s licence will assist police should you get stopped while driving.

For more information contact the Driver Licensing Information line at 1-800-950-1498 or 250-978-8300 in Victoria, or check outDriver licensing.

If you want to get a B.C. driver's licence, you'll need to provide proof of your driving history. To get a full-privilege B.C. driver's licence, you must have had a driver's licence (not a learner's) in your home jurisdiction for at least two years.

For information on providing your driving history documents, including translations, see Proving your driving experience.