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Kat C+E license in Poland - exchanging a USA drivers license for Polish

perkujki 4 | 26
20 Jun 2012 #1

Looking for information on exchanging a USA drivers license for Polish. I understand for Kat B you can take the written test in English and be done. I have course material for Polish Kat B in English. Does any one have experience with a kat C + E +(D) and ADR. I hold the USA equivalent and am considering moving to Poland in the future. I'm sure we could start another thread discussing moving from the USA to Poland but I'm hoping to limit this thread to the license discussion. thx.
Looker - | 1,134
3 Feb 2015 #2
According to the Polish law, there is full convertibility of the national driving license issued abroad for his Polish equivalent only if it complies with the requirements specified in the Vienna Convention on Road Traffic, and USA is not a party to the aforementioned Convention. So you will be obligated to pass the teoretical exam in order to obtain Polish Kat C+E license. But first unfortunately you have to wait long for a confirmation of the authenticity of your drivers license by the American authorities. And it is not smooth process at all.

I'll give an example about someone from Illinois who got through the whole process of convertion his American license into the Polish documents. He had CDL Class B drivers license and he wanted to obtain comparable license in Poland. But it's Polish Kat. C, not B of course. And here might be first problem, because people from city office here need to recognize the difference. Another more important issue came up - the US Class B CDL licence includes a "L" restriction - that the air brakes are not allowed, and it was stated on the translation. And this restriction has no equivalent in the Polish law, which makes it difficult or even impossible to exchange this document. Wanting to satisfactorily solve this problem, the exchanging office issued a decision on the basis of which the person concerned was granted to Polish category C1 drivers license. In making its decision, the office acted on the assumption that the vehicles listed in this category - with a maximum mass does not exceeds 7.5 tonnes - and as a lighter vehicles usually are not equipped with air brakes, but only hydraulic.

Over two years ago a parliamentary question to the Polish Minister of Transport was reported regarding some legislation changes to adapt the needs of people returning from the US who want to replace the American drivers license into Polish without too much hassle. Unfortunately, the answer was clear - the Ministry does not see a need to change anything. The Department considers it right that in the process of conversion the foreign drivers license, the additional written exam is required.
sobieski 106 | 2,118
3 Feb 2015 #3
Tell me, would European drivers be able to exchange their licenses in the United States of Total Paranoia (just quoting Clarkson here). You are not EU, take the exam, period.
Looker - | 1,134
3 Feb 2015 #4
In the US, Polish driving license is generally recognized, even "international driver's license" is not required. Same Polish license and eg. credit card allows to rent a car

So it is easier to drive over there having only Polish license it seems. It's only a shame that in regards to Visa entry everything is opposite. But it's another issue.
sobieski 106 | 2,118
3 Feb 2015 #5
But it's another issue.

I am always never at the foreigners' department here in Warsaw but when I am there, I find it very funny how all these americans have to stand in line with all the rest of the non-Europeans. No red carpet here :)

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