Senior drivers

Senior drivers can be affected by changes in vision, reaction time and flexibility – that can affect safe vehicle handling.
A safe road system has skilled, competent, alert and sober drivers travelling at safe speeds in safe vehicles on safe roads that are predictable and forgiving of mistakes. If there comes a time when it is no longer safe to drive, people will need to retire from driving but can still maintain mobility and independence.
Drivers must renew their driver licence at age 75, 80 and every two years after that.

  • Your new licence will be valid for only two to five years.
  • The renewal fees are lower – because you’re renewing your licence more often.
  • You need to present a medical certificate each time you apply.
  • If recommended by your doctor, you will have to sit a 30-minute On-road Safety Test.


Getting a medical certificate
To renew your licence past your 75th birthday you will need to visit your doctor to get a Medical certificate for driver licence.
Tell your doctor the certificate is for your driver licence. You will have to pay for the appointment yourself.
During your appointment your doctor will discuss your present state of health with you and test your eyesight. They will then recommend whether you are:

  • medically fit to drive
  • medically fit to drive with conditions (eg correcting lenses, time-of-day restriction, distance restriction)
  • medically fit to drive subject to an on-road safety test
  • to be referred to a specialist (eg optometrist or occupational therapist driving assessor – your doctor will advise you of the results)
  • not medically fit to drive. Your doctor must advise the NZ Transport Agency and your licence will expire on your birthday.

If your doctor decides you are medically fit to drive, he or she will provide you with a Medical certificate for driver licence.

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