Cars in Norway

Bil i Norge
Here you can read about import and regulations regarding the use of cars and other vehicles in the country.

In general  your car and other vehicles must be registered in the country in which you live. People who are permanently resident in Norway normally cannot drive a foreign-registered vehicle in the country. However, there are a few exceptions.

Using a car during temporary residence in Norway

People who are permanently resident abroad, or who are living temporarily for a fixed period in Norway, may use a foreign-registered vehicle as a car in Norway. This mainly applies to people who

  • commute to Norway
  • work abroad
  • live abroad together with a spouse or children under 18, or
  • are visiting Norway as tourists.

If you are staying in Norway temporarily, you may use a foreign-registered vehicle for up to two years.

Up to one year

If you are staying in Norway for up to a year, you may use a foreign-registered vehicle without applying for a driving permit. You must always be able to prove that your stay will not exceed one year from the date of entry to the country. The date of entry means the date on which you travelled into Norway, not the date when the vehicle was brought in. Examples of documentation proving you are staying temporarily in Norway:

  • employment contract
  • certificate showing you have been allocated a place on an educational programme
  • documentation showing the length of stay of a spouse/family member
  • documentation showing you will be returning to work abroad
  • documentation showing that you are renting out your own property abroad. 

Up to two years

If you are staying in Norway for up to two years, you must apply for a temporary driving permit for the second year. You must prove that your stay will not exceed two years from the date of entry.

Remember that you must apply for a temporary driving permit before one year has passed since your date of entry. For your stay to be regarded as temporary, you may not have been staying in Norway or been registered in the National Registry in Norway for more than 365 days during the two years immediately preceding the date of entry.

Moving to Norway with a car

You can apply for a temporary driving permit for a foreign-registered vehicle for up to 14 days when moving to and from Norway. You must be able to provide documentary evidence of the move in the form of a change of residence certificate, employment contract, or some other relevant documentation.

If you are bringing a foreign-registered car or other vehicle when you move to Norway, you must import the vehicle and pay duties and taxes. This applies regardless of your citizenship and where you are moving from. The Norwegian Tax Administration has its own guide on the procedure when you want to import your vehicle to Norway.

Insurance of vehicles and cars in Norway

By law, everyone owning a vehicle in Norway must take out a third-party liability insurance policy that will pay compensation for any damage or injury the vehicle may cause to both people and property. In addition to third-party liability insurance, the owner may choose to take out more voluntary insurance policies. Find out what insurance is suitable in your case and how to to find the best offers via the Norwegian Consumer Council’s Finansportalen site.

Winter and summer tyres

In Norway it is the driver who is responsible for assessing whether the vehicle has sufficient grip on the road surface. On slippery surfaces, road grip is improved by using winter tyres, with or without studs, or snow chains. Use of winter tyres with studs is regulated. Studded tyres may not be used from the first Monday after Easter Monday up to and including 31 October. In the counties of Nordland, Troms and Finnmark, the regulation applies from 1 May up to and including 15 October.

In Oslo and Bergen a fee has been introduced for vehicles driven with studded tyres. If road conditions require extra grip, winter tyres and chains may also be used outside the winter season. Note also that certain roads in Norway are closed in the winter.

Speed limits in Norway

The general speed limits in Norway are 50 km/h in urban areas and 80 km/h outside urban areas. If an area has a special speed limit, this is shown on digital information boards and road signs.

Cars registered on Svalbard

If you live permanently on Svalbard and intend to visit Norway on holiday, you may apply for a permit to use the vehicle. You can be granted a driving permit for up to three months per calendar year. Before you take the vehicle to Norway, you must apply for a driving permit for temporary use of a Svalbard-registered vehicle.

You must pay an annual fee for the vehicle. Note that if you move to the mainland, you must declare this to Norwegian Customs and pay duties and taxes for the vehicle.

Use of a Norwegian-registered car and vehicle in another Nordic country

You do not need to register a Norwegian-registered vehicle in another Nordic country if you are only spending a short time in the country. This applies in situations where you are staying with the vehicle in the country in question. This does not apply if you are planning to leave the vehicle in another Nordic country. In such cases, the vehicle must be re-registered.

The length of time you can drive with a vehicle registered in another country varies from country to country. You may drive a Norwegian-registered vehicle in the country you are visiting if your stay is less than 12 months in Sweden, less than 6 months in Denmark, Finland, Iceland and in the Faroe Islands, and less than 3 months in Greenland. If your stay and use of the vehicle exceeds these periods, the vehicle must be registered. In some cases a permit may be needed to drive the foreign-registered vehicle, and you are recommended to check this before travelling. Agencies responsible for registration of vehicles in the other Nordic countries are:

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NB! If you have questions regarding the processing of a specific case or application, or other personal matters, please contact the relevant authority directly.

Info Norden is the information service of the Nordic Council of Ministers. Here you can find info and tips if you wish to move, work, study, seek support or start a business in the Nordic region.