Translating your Stateside Driver’s License


Translation Office (3)

The office was closed when I took this picture.

As you may have read in my opener/bio, I am a ‘get-out-and-go’ kinda gal. So you can imagine my disappointment when we arrived here and I was told that I couldn’t drive because I didn’t already have an International Driver’s License. I assumed that I would be able to obtain my Turkish license once we arrived, similar to being stationed in Okinawa, Japan; boy was I wrong! First lesson of living overseas twice – You will never have the SAME experience in a DIFFERENT country.

When I started asking around, I learned that there were 2 ways to achieve my goal: 1.) Online and 2.) Downtown Adana. You can get an International DL online through AAA (and other companies); however, there are a couple of downsides to this option. One is that you have to wait 4-6 weeks for it to arrive in the mail (this option definitely didn’t jive with my eagerness to get out and go) and the other is that it is only good for 1 year. For me, that left Option #2 – Head downtown and get my license NOW!

If you’re in a similar situation like I was, without a license to drive – read on. If you’re not, and you knew to get an International DL before you came here then you need to thank your sponsor immediately or pat yourself on the back for your due diligence.

Enter here (under the red sign) from the street.

Enter here (under the red sign) from the street.

I can’t remember how we got the following information, but it is worth its weight in gold! There is a guy named Taner Gode who is located downtown, across the D400 from the huge Adana Mosque. His company, Guven Tercume Burosu, can translate your state-side driver’s license so that you can legally drive here in Turkey. The best part is that the translated license lasts the length of your tour here.

Taner Gode, the owner, speaks great English (and 7 other languages) and will go out of his way to help navigate you to his office. To translate your license you will need your Stateside DL and 100TL (about $50). I suggest calling Taner to let him know that you are on your way so that he can be expecting you. He’ll also give you detailed directions, arrange parking when you arrive and even meet you in the parking lot to walk you to his office.

A BIG “Thank You” to Taner Gode for his great service and getting me on the road here in Turkey!

(Note: You do not need an International DL when renting a car in Germany. A state-side license will suffice.)

Go down this hallway and the office is at the end on the left.

Go down this hallway and the office is at the end on the left.

Guven Tercume Burosu – Translation Office

Taner Gode

Hours: Monday – Friday 8:00-17:00

Phone: 0532 247 31 80 (Call for an appointment and directions)
*Taner speaks great English, but he will answer in Turkish. As soon as he hears you speaking English, he will too.


Directions: map Take a right out of the base front gate. Take a Right onto the D400. Vere Right onto the side road next to the Optimum Mall. Go through the round-about. At the next light (Attatuk Cd.), make a left (3rd exit at the round-about) – Is Bank will be on the corner. Pull into the parking area immediately on the right after you turn onto this street. A parking attendant will come out and assist you. You will need to leave your keys with your car so they can move the cars around accordingly since it’s such a small lot. Parking was 5TL for an hour when we were there. If you want to ask how much it will be before you leave your car say, “neck-a-dar?”

Coordinates: N 36°59.461’ E035°19.535’

EDITOR’S NOTE: As of February 2016, this post has been re-published on our Overseas Yes network site, Germany Ja. We are in the process of transferring all the content of this site over there, and will be shutting Turkey Tamam down once that process is complete. Comments have been closed on this post here, but if you’ve got something to add we’d love to continue the conversation. Please visit this post in its new home on Germany Ja and leave your comment there.

6 thoughts on “Translating your Stateside Driver’s License

  1. Beth says:

    Great info! I’m wondering about the AAA license – apparently you can renew online and they will mail you a new one after your first one expires… We are planning to get those before we move to Turkey so we will be ready to go when we land. Does anyone know if this method works?


  2. Crystal says:

    Yes, it does work. I obtained my IDL prior to arrival and am in the process of having it renewed. You just simply fill out the paper work and send it in then wait for it to arrive. You can also obtain a free translation of your driver’s license from Military One Source, then all you have to do is get it notarized. And that will last the entire length of your time here in Turkey. Just make sure to have any translation notarized, with out being notarized it is not considered to be legal =-) Hope that helps.


  3. Mary Gobble says:

    Hi! We have applied for our IDLs, but not sure they’ll arrive before we head over to Turkey at the end of June. So, this is great information to have available. Don’t know if this is the right place to ask another question in reference to driving in Turkey, but we are looking for suggestions on where to acquire auto insurance for the car which we are planning on shipping over soon. Any suggestions?


  4. Local Manager says:

    We went through USAA. Apparently they will no longer insure vehicles in Turkey, however they will put you in contact with the company that does. If you find out what company that is, would you mind posting it here for others?


  5. Local Manager says:

    Thank you for the update Jennifer. Also, be sure to bring TL as they only accept bills (no credit cards).


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