The Easiest Ways to Renew Your South African Car License
Drivers in South Africa, there is no need to dread your approaching driver’s license renewal. We’ve got all the information you need to make it as quick and easy as possible. Check out all the facts and all the cheats to making the process faster and easier.
When should I renew my Driver’s License?
Your driver’s license needs to be renewed four weeks before its expiry date. You can see the expiry date on the license itself (see below image). A few factors determine how long your license remains valid for, but the standard is two to five years. If you’re not sure, check your license today and add a reminder to your calendar for two months before it expires. This should give you enough time to complete the process and plan for each step.
If you renew your license later than four weeks before it expires, you will need to apply for a temporary driver’s license too in addition to following the renewal process. This means spending extra money and effort. You can avoid the extra stress, costs, and admin by renewing your license with plenty of time to spare.
What will I need in order to Renew My Driver’s License?
Here is a complete list of everything you’ll need to renew your South African driver’s licence without a fuss:
Your Original Identity Document (ID Book) or a Valid Passport
Yes, we mean the actual document itself, not copies. It needs to be valid, of course, and readable.
Certified Copies of Your ID or Passport
These will be used by the licence renewal staff in the renewing process.
Your Current Driver’s Licence Card
The renewal staff will take the card and give you a document to use until you can collect your new card.
Four ID photographs
You can save time by getting your ID photos before the day you go to renew your licence. One photo is usually used in your temporary licence. The photo needs to be clear and include your head and shoulders, but nothing else.
It should clearly show your face and eyes, but not your teeth. This means no smiling unless you’re smiling like the Mona Lisa. Face the camera straight-on and not from an angle. The background needs to be white with no shadows, people,or objects. Don’t wear hats or glasses in your photo unless you wear glasses 24/7. Keep excess hair out of your face. The only hair on your face in the photo should be a beard or mustache.
The photos must be printed on high-quality photo paper, and they should not be folded or damaged. The photos need to be identical, so four copies of the same photo, and they all need to measure 45mm (H) x 35mm (W).
It’s quite specific, but don’t worry. Many pharmacies can do this for you or otherwise places like FotoFirst or PostNet. Your local Licence Testing Centre may also offer this service. Some of the newer licensing centres now no longer require you to bring photos, since they take them on the spot. It’s best to check ahead of time so that you are prepared either way.
Proof of Residence
This could be a utility account with your legal name and address. Otherwise, the owner of the bill can make an affidavit that says you live at the address with the utility bill attached to the affidavit. If you stay in an informal settlement, you need to get a letter from the ward councillor with an official stamp that confirms your residential address.
Proof of address is considered a standard necessity in any process in South Africa where your identity needs to be verified, and the law is pretty specific about what form your proof of address needs to take. If you are unsure, you can speak to an attorney or someone at your local post office about getting a valid proof of address.
The Application Fees
Find out what the latest applicable fees are by giving your local driver’s licence testing centre a call. You can find their contact information on www.gov.za. Most testing centres now allow digital payments on the day using EFTpos machines.
An Eye Test
If you want to, you can save some time by doing an eye test at an optometrist like Vision Worx beforehand and bring it along on the day. If you don’t get time to do an eye test before don’t stress. The team at the licensing centre will do an eye test on the day. Doing it beforehand just saves you some time and stress on the day.
The Application Form / Licence Renewal Form
Gauteng residents can go to Natis Online Services to book their driver’s licence renewal. Everyone going to renew their licence needs to fill in Form DL1. To save time, you can get this form at www.gov.za and fill it in beforehand. If your address has changed, you will also need to fill in the NCP form (Notice of Change of Address or Particulars).
Step by Step Guide to the Entire Process
Before ,you would need to wait in rows at the testing centre for hours, but that has changed in some areas of South Africa. You should now be able to book an appointment with NaTIS for a licensing centre near you using their online licence booking system. You can then show up at the appointed time with all the required documents and licence fee, wait a short while, and complete the whole process fast. Before, this might have taken you the whole day, but in some areas, you can now be done within 30 minutes!
After this part has been completed, you will need to go pick up your driving licence card at a later date. You will be informed of the date at the testing centre. This date is usually four to six weeks later, but you won’t need an appointment to collect. You may just sit in a row again for a short while, and you will need to bring specific papers such as the confirmation letter handed to you at the first appointment.
How Can I Make Renewing My Driver’s Licence Easier?
For many people, spending time in rows at the licencing office is not possible or practical. Luckily there are ways to make things easier. If you can gather all the additional documents required beforehand and you don’t mind paying a fee, companies like Qline can queue for you. That means you don’t need to wait in line to renew your licence. You will then get driving licence card delivery as a service that you need to pay an additional fee for. For those who want to do their licence online, this is the method for you. But remember that it will cost you more.
It is important to keep your presence on South African roads legal to avoid penalties. This includes renewing your vehicle licence disc, renewing your driver’s licence and ensuring your vehicle is adequately insured. You can get a quote to insure your car today with reliable cover from trusted South African insurance companies by filling in the form on this page.