Everyone who drives on New Zealand roads is required to have the correct licence for their vehicle type so they are able to handle it safely.

If they are unfit to drive for medical reasons, drive under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, or use a vehicle in a way that can cause harm, we have the power to suspend or revoke their driver licence. If it requires immediate suspension, the Police can take action directly at the roadside.

Waka Kotahi regulates licensing parties too. We approve and audit driver licence course providers so we can ensure that drivers meet the standard.

We also assess the skills and experience of people applying to be testing officers and driving instructors, audit approved testing officers and investigate complaints about driving instructors and testing officers.

Licences by vehicle type

Regulated parties

  • Drivers: 3.5 million people have a driver licence (class 1–6), 250,000 new licences issued annually
  • Driver licence course providers: 520 providers,  87,500 course participants per year
  • Driver testing officers and instructors: 220 driver testing officers with a driver testing officer endorsement, 3150 people with a driving instructor endorsement.

Read more about driver licences