Documents You Need to Buy a Car in Australia

By Alexi Falson on 12 May 2024
image for Documents You Need to Buy a Car in Australia Buying a new car is one of the most exciting purchases you’ll make, so it’s important to come prepared with all the documents you need to make the buying process as smooth as possible.

While the process of buying a car here in Australia is relatively straightforward, there are some essential documents you’ll need to organise to keep the wheels of the transaction moving.

Thankfully, we’ve done all the homework, and present you with the definitive guide to what documents you need to buy a car in Australia in 2024.

List of Documents You Need to Buy a Car in Australia in 2024

Below you can find all the documents you’ll need to buy a car in Australia, covering important aspects like proving your identity, validating your income and finalising registration and insurance details once you hit the road.

For more information on what documents you’ll need to finance a new car purchase, we’ve covered this topic in a previous explainer article here.

Proof of Identity

One of the most important documents you’ll need to provide while buying a new or used car here in Australia is your proof of identity documents.

These can be a combination of government-issued identification cards, like a licence, birth certificate, passport, medicare card which are used to confirm your identity, date of birth, current residential address, and citizenship status.

If you’re purchasing a car outright, these proof of identity documents are all you need to hit the ground running:

  • Passport

  • Drivers Licence

  • Birth Certificate

  • Medicare Card

  • Proof of Permanent Residency/Visa Status

Proof of Income

If you’re unable to buy a car outright and need to lean on vehicle finance for your purchase, you’ll be required to provide additional documents that allow a lender to confirm you’re a suitable candidate for finance.

These documents typically include things like:

  • Recent employer payslips

  • PAYG statements

  • Bank statements

  • Superannuation statements

  • Proof of assets and/or debts & liabilities

Information Required for Insuring a New or Used Vehicle

When purchasing a new or used vehicle, you’ll need to provide your insurance company with some key information.

Doing this ahead of time allows the insurance company to provide coverage for the vehicle before you get behind the wheel for the first time; these documents typically include things like:

  • A dealer invoice or contract of sale (containing address, ABN and contact info)

  • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)

  • Make, Model and Year

  • Registration Information

If you’re looking for the most convenient way of buying a new car, let one of our car-buying experts take the stress out of the process and find you the best possible price.

FAQ: Do You Need an Australian Driver’s Licence to Buy a Car in Australia?

Overseas visitors and long-term residents will be pleased to know that an Australian driver's licence is not required to buy a car here in Australia.

Having said that, you’ll still be required to provide government-issued identification to purchase the vehicle, obtain a compulsory third-party (CTP) insurance policy and get the vehicle officially registered in your respective state or territory.

After a certain period of time and, depending on your country of origin, you may be required to apply for an Australian driver’s licence.

FAQ: How Does a Foreigner Buy a Car in Australia?

Foreigners looking to buy a car here in Australia go through the same process as any Aussie looking to purchase a vehicle and get it on the road legally.

That means foreigners still need to check dealerships and online classifieds for a vehicle that suits their needs and budget restraints, with enough of a cushion to cover maintenance, registration, insurance and running costs.

FAQ: What to do After Buying a Car in Australia?

Suppose you’re from overseas and have just bought a car in Australia. In that case, it’s essential that you check the vehicle is currently registered and in a roadworthy condition to drive on the road to avoid any potential fines.

While purchasing a used vehicle, make sure the seller provides you with registration and compulsory third-party (CTP) insurance details that will allow you to hit the ground running once you’ve handed over the money.

FAQ: Can International Students Buy a Car in Australia?

International students living in Australia can legally purchase a vehicle here, so long as they can provide government-issued identification documents and proof of a current, permanent Australian residential address.

Request a Quote

If you’re looking to upgrade to a new car, be sure to reach out to one of our car-buying experts who can help streamline the buying process.


Alexi Falson

Alexi is an automotive journalist and road tester hailing from Byron Bay. He has an affection for both cars and motorbikes, a great admiration for the simplicity of old-school engineering, and a fascination of new technology making its way to modern cars. When he's not road testing, you'll find him surfing, hiking or helping people find their dream cars.

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