need info. please for international license

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Oct 23rd, 2005, 08:50 AM
  #1
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need info. please for international license

Hi,
I've pretty much decided that I'll look into leasing a car in Mahe, Seychelles. The prices don't seem to be too high and the island is small enough that gas totals shouldn't brake the bank (we'll see). I've read that one needs an international driving license and the driving is on the left in the Seychelles. My question is, how does one obtain an international license if needed. I currently have a US state issued license.
Many thanks ahead;
Sherry
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Oct 23rd, 2005, 11:55 AM
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You can get an int'l license at most AAA. Need a couple passport photos and a current drivers license for the period of use in the Seychelles.
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Oct 23rd, 2005, 03:29 PM
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Really, that's it. No test, language skills or anything? Why would they (who ever they is) even make us bother? Not that I'm complaining though - I really thought that it would be some really complicated, I don't have time for that, kind of thing.
Thanks a million for your reply.
Sherry
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Oct 23rd, 2005, 06:26 PM
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Almost painless except it costs about $10 I think.
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Oct 24th, 2005, 03:59 AM
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Cybor

really good question.
I have to get a new one every year for visiting the US!!!

Michael
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Oct 24th, 2005, 08:35 AM
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Many guide books say you need this in most countries, but neither my husband nor I has ever gotten one, and we've driven all over western Europe and southern Africa, and even got parking tickets and a traffic ticket once in Swaziland, and never needed to show an international driving license.

I know some people will suggest that it's a good thing to have to turn over to authorities in lieu of your real drivers license, if they request such a thing. I have no information on that point, but that sounds to me more like the movies than like real life.

But anyway, yes, AAA gives you one for about $10, I understand. Presumably its value is that it translates the info on your license into a whole bunch of different languages. I think English is an official language of the Seychelles, so it's hard to see why you'd need translations. If it were me, I wouldn't take the word of a guidebook (or even of us Fodor's posters), but look for a Seychellian (is that the right word?) source.

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Oct 24th, 2005, 11:02 AM
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Hi,
Thanks for the reply. My Seychelle guide books do say that an international license is required to rent there. Your right, the official language is English but Creole, from what I understand is the most spoken. Maybe, these wierd license requirements are to keep track of us potential violators - who knows - one can never assume or try to figure out the governments logic. For $10. it's worth it though, just in case.
Best;
Sherry
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Oct 24th, 2005, 03:04 PM
  #8
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Celia -

Seychellois - a person from the Seychelles.

The primary languages in the Seychelles - Creole (spoken by most Seychellois) English (the official language) and French (just because, I guess). The local paper, small that it is, prints the news in all three languages. And the TV programs - news especially, presented in all three languages or a mix of them - depends!

Since it's relatively painless to obtain an International Driving License, go for it. You can always contact their tourist/consular office located in NYC (believe on 2nd Ave. near the UN)... though it may take a few phone calls to get someone on the phone or to return a call.
 
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Oct 25th, 2005, 05:52 AM
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Thanks for the language info, Sandi!

Celia
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Nov 2nd, 2005, 10:47 AM
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Sherry, I don't know if you still read responses to your post but I can answer your question since my American husband and I lived in the Seychelles for three years and we go there now at least twice a year.
We had many family members and friends visiting us from Europe and the US who rented a car. There is no need or requirement for international license. Three official languages are Creole, French and English. And they all are spoken because of history of the country not "because"
I wish some travel agents can read at least sample of history of countries they sending clients to. The Seychelles has fascinating history that helps in understanding why three languages are official and fluently spoken.
Sherry, if you need any additional information about visiting this beautiful country let me know. My heart is still in the Seychelles.
Sabrina
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Nov 2nd, 2005, 10:52 AM
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By the way what guide books say that international license is required?
We have a friend who wrote a guide to the Seychelles, so need to tell her about it.
P.S. It is the Seychelles not Seychelle
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Nov 3rd, 2005, 04:18 AM
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Hello Sabrina,
Thank you for your info. Yes, I absolutely would love to be able to discuss the Seychelles further with you - it's always so much better to speak with someone who's been there. The books etc. actually don't say much. I'm actually having a rather difficult time trying to book a hotel as I'll be going in Feb. 25/March 05 which seems to be already booked and I'll be spending 2 days before my 1 week catamaran Seychelle Island trip and then 2 days after on Mahe. Some of the hotels will not let you stay for less than 4 days. I'm checking the Sunset Beach Hotel - any thoughts on the hotel or the beach right there ( Beau Vallon (sp)? Also, some of the recommended reservation services are doing a little bit of baiting and switching by advertising open dates that aren't available and offering meal plans where none actually exist.
As far as your question regarding where I got my info on the international driving license requirement - I first saw that in the Michelin Seychelle guide and have also seen it elsewhere (I forget where else). Also a few other fodorites who seem to be in the know advised the same. I'm wondering if perhaps you didn't need the license because you were living there or if you just lucked out by not having any encounters with anyone who was overly officious.
Many thanks;
Sherry
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Nov 3rd, 2005, 08:05 AM
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The best source I have found is the customer service dept. of the car rental service. Are you using one of the international branded agencies? If so, e-mail them (you can find customer service e-mail address on their website) and ask your question as to whether an international DL is required for renting there. Then take your written confirmation with you in case it becomes any issue. Also, you could e-mail the embassy of that country here in the U.S. (or check their website, many countries have them with plenty of information as to facts relevant to visitors). advice. I couldn't find a website for the Seychelles through google but their address and phone in New York is 800 Second Avenue, Suite 400, New York NY 10017 Telephone: (212) 687-9766
Fax: (212) 972-1786.

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Nov 3rd, 2005, 09:16 AM
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Celia said

"I know some people will suggest that it's a good thing to have to turn over to authorities in lieu of your real drivers license, if they request such a thing. I have no information on that point, but that sounds to me more like the movies than like real life."

Actually for Africa, I take 2 international licenses when I drive. And yes if the police decide that they can extract a few bucks on a violation or trumped up charge they will ask for the license and maybe the passport. Then its a whole new reality. I give them the int'l license and then negotiate. Never ever let them take the passport or you are screwed. They don't need to have it anyway. There has been a couple times where I fought the bribe, told them I'll drive to the courthouse-they always seem to be on foot- and let them keep the license. Then head out of town. They think nobody will go anywhere without the precious license.

But thanks Celia, I guess I should have been in the movies. But we are talking Seychelles and I haven't rented a car there.

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