Can I use a Kuwait driving license in the UK?

use a Kuwait driving license in the UK

Can I use a Kuwait driving license in the UK?” This is a question many people from Kuwait ask. If you visit the UK, you can use a Kuwait driving license in the UK for up to one year from when you arrive. But there are rules to follow. Today, We will help you to understand how to use your Kuwaiti license in the UK properly.

Can I use a Kuwait driving license in the UK?

The answer is Yes, you can use a Kuwait driving license in the UK for up to 12 months from the time you arrive in the UK but after one year you must take out a Provisional UK Licence and put ‘L’ plates on your car.

Understanding the Basics

When you move from one country to another, one of the most significant concerns is mobility. Public transport in the UK is efficient, but there’s an unmatched freedom in driving yourself around. Using your Kuwaiti driving license in the UK can save you from the hassle of obtaining a local license immediately upon arrival.

Validity of the Kuwaiti Driving License in the UK

For visitors from Kuwait, the UK permits the use of a full, valid driving license to drive for up to 12 months from the time you become a resident. This is a substantial period for those coming for short courses, business trips, or vacations.

Beyond the 12 Months

If you intend to stay in the UK longer than 12 months and want to use a Kuwait driving license in the UK, you will need to exchange your Kuwaiti license for a UK driving license or pass a UK driving test to obtain one.

Understanding UK Driving Norms

The UK has certain driving norms that might differ from those in Kuwait that you should know before using a Kuwait driving license in the UK :

  1. Driving on the Left: Unlike Kuwait, the UK drives on the left side of the road. This is crucial to remember, especially when turning at intersections or roundabouts.
  2. Speed Limits: Residential areas typically have a speed limit of 30 mph (48 km/h), while motorways can allow speeds up to 70 mph (112 km/h). Always follow the posted speed limits.
  3. Roundabouts: The UK has many roundabouts. Remember to give way to traffic coming from the right.

Insurance and Documentation

It’s essential to have the necessary documentation to use a Kuwait driving license in the UK:

  1. Insurance: Ensure you have valid insurance that covers you while driving in the UK.
  2. License: Always carry your Kuwaiti driving license with you. An International Driving Permit (IDP) can also be helpful, although not always necessary.
  3. Vehicle Documents: If you’re using a rental car, keep all related documents handy.
Advantages of Using Your Kuwaiti License

Advantages of Using Your Kuwaiti License

  1. Convenience: No need for additional tests or paperwork immediately upon arrival in the UK.
  2. Cost-Efficient: Obtaining a UK driving license can be costly, especially if driving lessons are needed.
  3. Flexibility: Especially beneficial for those in the UK for a limited period.

Renting a Car in the UK with a Kuwaiti Driving License

Visiting the UK and planning to explore it at your own pace? Renting a car can be a great way to do just that. For those from Kuwait, who want to use a Kuwait driving license in the UK the process is fairly straightforward.


  1. License Validity: Your Kuwaiti driving license should be full and valid. Provisional or learner licenses aren’t acceptable for renting cars in the UK.
  2. Duration: If you’ve been in the UK for less than 12 months, you can rent and drive a car using your Kuwaiti license.

The Rental Process

  1. Age Restrictions: Most car rental companies require drivers to be at least 21 years old. However, for some high-end or specialty cars, the age requirement might be 25 or even 30.
  2. Additional Fees: Drivers under 25 may also be subjected to “young driver fees.”
  3. Documentation: Along with your Kuwaiti driving license, many rental companies may also ask for a valid passport and possibly a second form of ID. It’s always good to check in advance.
  4. International Driving Permit (IDP): While many car rental companies in the UK accept a Kuwaiti driving license, some might ask for an IDP, especially if the license isn’t in English. An IDP is a translation of your driving license and can be obtained in Kuwait before your trip.
  5. Rental Insurance: Always ensure you have the necessary insurance coverage when renting a car. Most rental agencies offer insurance packages, but it’s worth checking if your travel insurance or credit card company provides rental car coverage.
  6. Deposit: Car rental companies usually require a deposit, which is often blocked on your credit card and released after the rental period, provided there’s no damage to the car.



Using a Kuwait driving license in the UK offers a convenient solution for short-term visitors. As of the latest guidelines, Kuwaiti travelers can indeed drive in the UK with their national license for up to 12 months from when they first become a resident. However, for those planning longer stays, it’s essential to consider the steps for obtaining a UK license.

Faisal Nazir
Faisal Nazir shares his insights and experiences to help readers discover the hidden gems and vibrant culture of Kuwait.


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