An agreement on the mutual recognition of driving licenses between mainland China and Macao was signed recently, allowing those who own certain driving licenses of the mainland to drive in Macao and vice versa. When the agreement will officially take effect, however, is yet to be announced.
The policy only applies to driving licenses for compact cars
Only three kinds of driving licenses are applicable, according to the agreement. They are B-type licenses of Macao and China's C1 licenses (for manual control compact cars) and C2 licenses (for automatic control compact cars).
Mainland drivers should be aware that they can drive in Macao directly for the first 14 days. After that, they are required to register at the Department of Transportation. Macao drivers, on the other hand, can directly apply for driving licenses of mainland China.
You can rent a car to take a self-driving trip in Macao
The mutual recognition of driving licenses, however, doesn't equate to direct access of all cars on both sides. A special license plate accepted in both jurisdictions is required. As an alternative, you can rent a car in Macao and then drive wherever you want to go.
This is a good news for people who like to drive when they travel. "Due to inconvenient transportation before, some remote scenery in Macao has been difficult to reach," said Miss Luo, a Guangzhou resident. "Now the policy enables me and my friends to explore more lesser-known places in Macao."
Things you need to know about driving in Macao
1. Unlike in mainland China, you need to drive on the left side of the road in Macao, which can be a brand new experience for most Chinese drivers. They thus need to be more careful when passing crossroads and overpasses.
2. Different ports and shopping malls have parking lots, and some hotels in Macao also offer parking spaces. So before driving in Macao, you'd better do a research and locate the places you plan to visit, so as to save time in finding parking lots.
3. Macao is filled with well-marked one-way streets, therefore, it shouldn't be a big difficulty for green hands to drive on the correct lanes in the city. However, the traffic rules are very strict in Macao, so do your homework before entering.