Driving Licences are issued by Isle of Man Post who are the Licensing Agents for the Department of Infrastructure. The Licensing Office at the Department of Infrastructure deals with applications for driving licences from new residents to the Island and also deals with questions regarding Fitness to Drive.
The Isle of Man Driving Licence consists of 2 Parts. Part 1 is a Photocard containing a photograph, name and address and date of birth of the driver and Part 2 is the accompanying paper part that includes additional details and restrictions of the licence. Both Parts must be signed and retained for the licence to be valid. The format of the Photocard is similar to the European Community Driving Licence. Both Parts of the Licence show the categories of vehicles you are entitled to drive, either as a qualified driver ("F" = "Full licence) or as a leaner driver ("P" = "Provisional entitlement"). Restrictions on your driving entitlements are shown by Code Numbers alongside each category, and their meanings are explained on the paper Part 2 of the licence.
Driving Licence Application forms may be obtained from Isle of Man Post Offices, and the Department of Infrastructure's Licensing Office:
New Residents to the Isle of Man
New residents must obtain an Isle of Man driving licence within 12 months of becoming resident in the Isle of Man by making application to the Licensing Office at the address given above. If you hold a driving licence issued outside the Isle of Man and you come to reside in the Isle of Man you may be able to take out an Isle of Man driving licence for some or all of the categories of vehicles shown on your existing licence without having to pass a driving test in the Island.
For a full driving licence issued by one of the following countries in TABLE 1 you can take out a Manx licence for the same driving entitlements as are shown on that licence issued outside the Isle of Man if your driving entitlement originated in one of these countries or originated as an exchangeable category from a country in Table 2:
The following EU Member States: United Kingdom (Great Britain, Northern Ireland or Gibraltar), Austria, Belgium, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Ireland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden.
An EEA State (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway)Channel Islands (Guernsey, Jersey) though restrictions may apply in the case of any entitlements that do not meet EU/EEA Community Licence requirements
For a full driving licence issued by one of the following countries in TABLE 2 you can take out a Manx licence for the driving entitlements shown on that licence, though restrictions may be applied to the driving entitlements in the case of any that do not meet EU/EEA Community Licence requirements:
Monaco and S. Korea with certain limitations.
Australia, Barbados, British Virgin Islands, Canada*, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa*, Switzerland, Zimbabwe
* A Canadian or South African licence will be exchanged only for driving a vehicle with automatic transmission unless the applicant provides proof that a test has been passed in a vehicle with manual transmission. Vocational licences such as for a goods vehicle or a bus cannot be exchanged for a Canadian or South African licence.
Any other Country
Where a person holds a driving licence issued for a country other than one mentioned in one of the tables above, or where the overseas driving entitlement cannot be recognised for issuing a Manx driving licence, he or she will have to take a driving test, and should contact the Vehicle Licensing Office for further information. You cannot exchange licences from countries other than those mentioned in one of the two tables set out above unless an Order adding another country to the list has been approved by Tynwald since this information was compiled.
Visitors to the Island
If you are not resident in the Island you are permitted to drive in the Isle of Man for up to 12 months as a Visitor using your current full foreign licence or International driving permit.
You cannot drive in the Isle of Man if your driving licence or driving entitlement issued outside the Island is only a "provisional" licence or entitlement held by a learner driver.