Customs helps guests drive in Germany

Robert Szostek
U.S. European Command Customs

One advantage of being stationed in Germany is that friends and relatives can visit servicemembers and get a real European travel experience. But make sure visitors get authorization from customs before letting them drive a U.S. Army Europe-plated vehicle.

It is required whether they drive on their own or with you as a passenger, said Bill Johnson, chief of customs services at the USAREUR Office of the Provost Marshal.

A clear fax copy of the passport and stateside or international driver’s license is acceptable if relatives or friends are not available to fill out the forms in person.

To apply, guests cannot be residents of Germany. Consult the Web page at for the procedures and addresses of Army and Air Force customs office locations in Germany.

Once approved, guests can use this exception to policy to drive a USAREUR-plated car in Germany for up to 90 days from their arrival date in Europe. The authorization is only valid in Germany, so check with the vehicle registration office if they are driving to other countries.

The authority document must be in the car when they drive, along with the vehicle registration, proof of insurance and their international driver’s license or an official translation of their stateside license.

Call the Ramstein Customs Office at 480-5538, or the customs hot line at 381-7610 or 0621-7307610 to find out more.