Preparing for a CA Driver’s License

I’ve previously written about getting your drivers license but LCC Cassandra & Clark Robinson have written a much better guide. Take a look below.

Many California host families require their au pair to drive, as part of their duties caring for the children. It is very helpful to have an au pair available to help with driving the children to & from school and other enrichment activities. All Cultural Care au pairs are required to obtain an International Driver’s License in their home country, but it is not a requirement for the host families to allow the au pair to drive. Driving is a privilege for the au pair not a right. According to theCalifornia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), “you may drive as a visitor in this state without getting a California driver license as long as your state (international) license remains valid.” What host families need to be aware of is that the vast majority of car insurance companies will only insure a driver as a visitor for a limited amount of time and many may not insure a driver until they have a California driver’s license. For many families it is a high priority for their au pair to obtain a California Driver’s License. Here are some helpful tips to prepare an au pair for their license:

  • Study the California Driver’s Handbook before traveling to the US.Download here
  • Apply for a Social Security number. An au pair must have a Social Security number before they may schedule an appointment at the DMV.
    • An au pair must be in the US a minimum of 10-days before their information is in the Student Exchange and Visitor Information System (SEVIS) allowing the au pair to obtain a Social Security number.
  • Schedule an appointment at the DMV to apply for a California Driver’s License and take the written test. The test will include 36 multiple choice questions covering traffic laws. Practice taking the test with sample tests, here and/or participate in the DMV Driving Knowledge Tutorial.
    • An au pair will have 3 chances to pass the written test.
    • The basic (Class C) written driver license exam is available in the following languages: Amharic, Arabic, Armenian, Cambodian, Chinese, Croatian, English, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hmong, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Laotian, Persian/Farsi, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi, Romanian, Russian, Samoan, Spanish, Tagalog/Filipino, Thai, Tongan, Turkish, and Vietnamese.
    • I recommend that the au pair take the written test in the same language they studied in the California Driver’s Handbook. To avoid confusion due to poor translation.
  • Practice. practice, practice driving! Some people will need more practice that others, the DMV requires 50-hours of behind-the-wheel training for minors (including 10-hrs of night driving); use these hours as a guide for your practice.
  • Make a driving test Appointment(s) . (Driving tests are not given without an appointment.) You may also call 1-800-777-0133 between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday-Friday, to make a driving test appointment.
    • The DMV provides foreign language interpreters at no cost to the customer. If you need an interpreter, please let the DMV staff know and an appointment will be scheduled for when a foreign language interpreter is available. Appointments may also be scheduled during regular business hours by calling 1-800-777-0133 and indicating foreign language assistance is needed.
    • You have three chances to pass the driving test. If you fail, you may practice for a while, then make another appointment. There is no waiting period, but you must make an appointment. If you fail to successfully complete the driving test on the first attempt, you must pay a $6 fee for each additional driving test that is administered under an application for an original or renewal driver license…

You can also see the driving portion of the test at the link below.

Thursday, 19 January 2017 11:18 PM


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