Both motor vehicles and non-motor vehicles are driven on the right-hand side of the road. To operate a motor-vehicle, one must obtain a driver’s license or a temporary driver’s permit according to the laws. While operating a motor vehicle or non-motor vehicle, one must strictly adhere to the traffic signs and signals, lanes, instructions of the traffic police, and the road safety statutes, rules, and regulations. In the event of a traffic accident, the vehicle operator should immediately stop, maintain the scene of the accident, care to any wounded, and promptly notify the authorities.
Presently, as China has not yet acceded to the United Nations Convention on Road Traffic foreigners operating motor-vehicles within the borders of China must hold a state-issued effective driver’s license (or a temporary driver’s permit), or else he/she will be considered to be operating a motor vehicle without a license and shall be punished according to Chinese laws and regulations.
Holders of foreign driver’s licenses are not required to take a driving test, and need only to submit travel documents, the foreign driver’s license, proof of fulfillment of age and health capacity requirements, two one-inch color photos, and accept proper traffic safety laws and regulations. Once a “temporary driver’s permit,” is obtained, he/she can operate a motor vehicle in China.
A temporary visitor holding a foreign driver’s license who operates a vehicle brought with him/her on roads within China, shall, within two days of entry, apply for a temporary driving permit from the Public Security Bureau in charge of transportation at the municipal or city level which oversees the district where he/she crossed the border or where he/she begins operating the vehicle; To operate a rented Chinese vehicle, he/she shall apply for a temporary driver’s permit from the Public Security Bureau in charge of transportation at the municipal or city level. 27. Can a motor vehicle be brought in from a foreign country be operated in China? Motor vehicles brought in from a foreign country may be operated in China, but one should, within two days of entering the country, apply for a temporary license plate and motor-vehicle registration at the relevant Public Security Bureau in charge of transportation at the municipal or city level which oversees the district where he/she crossed the border or where he/ she begins operating the vehicle. The applicant should bring proof of registration from the foreign country, proof that the car has been brought into China, proof that the vehicle meets relevant safety standards, and proof of compulsory insurance for traffic accidents.
A foreigner can rent motor vehicles or non-motor vehicles, but to operate a motor vehicle one must adhere to the procedure of obtaining a Chinese driver’s license (or a temporary driving permit).