International Student Services Office

The Transportation Page

Traveling outside of Indianapolis?


Driver's License

International Driver's License (IDL)

An International driver's license is an English translation of your foreign driver's license. You will need to apply for the international driver's license in your home country. You will not be able to apply for the IDL in the U.S.

Benefits of an IDL:

You are able to drive in the U.S. immediately with your IDL. After one year, you must have a valid Indiana driver's license to legally drive in the U.S.

You are able to apply for an Indiana driver's license immediately after arriving in the U.S. if you have an IDL. Otherwise, you will need to apply for a learner's permit* before you are eligible to apply for an Indiana driver's license.

 *A learner's permit requires that you have an adult (21 years or older) with a valid driver's license for up to 9 months. You will also be required to practice driving for 50 total hours (at least 10 hours nighttime driving).

Indiana Driver's License

Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV)

How to apply for an Indiana Driver's License or State ID (PDF)


Hours (may vary, please check the website of the branch you plan to visit):

Monday: Closed
Tuesday: 8:30 a.m.-7:00 p.m.
Wednesday: 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Thursday: 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Friday: 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Saturday: 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Sunday: Closed

How to Apply for an Indiana Driver's License:


With an International Driver's License

You may apply for an Indiana driver's license anytime after you arrive. You are able to drive on your international driver's license for up to 1 year from your arrival in the U.S. After that, you will need to have an Indiana driver's license. We recommend that you apply no later than 7 months after you have arrived in the U.S.


In order to apply for an Indiana driver's license you must:

  • Pass the BMV's written, vision, and drive test. You may study for the written test using the BMV's  driver's manual located on the BMV website
  • Present the necessary documentation
    • Proof of identity and nonimmigrant status: passport, visa stamp, I-94 card
    • Proof of address in Indianapolis: bank statement with mailing address, pay stub, bill sent to your address in Indianapolis
    • Proof of Social Security Number: Social Security Card*

*You are only eligible for a Social Security Card if you are employed in the U.S. If you do not have a Social Security Card and are ineligible to receive the card because you are unemployed, you need to show proof of ineligibility. The Social Security Administration is in charge of issuing SSN's as well as issuing letters of ineligibility. In order to receive a letter of ineligibility, you must apply for a SSN.

BMV documents required for an Indiana Driver's License or State ID (PDF)

If you have passed all the required tests and submitted all required documents. Your photo will be taken and you should receive your new Indiana driver's license in the mail within 2 weeks.


Without an International Driver's License

If you do not have an international driver's license or an English translation of your foreign driver's license, you must first apply for an Indiana learners permit before you are eligible for an Indiana driver's license.

Learner's Permit Requirements:

You must be at least 16 years old (and 180 days) to be eligible for an Indiana learner's permit

If you are between the ages of 16 and 18, you must have a passenger 21 years or older with a valid driver's license in the car with you when you are driving. If you are over the age of 18, you must have a passenger with a valid driver's license only, in the car with you at all times.

You must complete 50 hours of supervised driving  (at least 10 nighttime hours) to be eligible to apply for an Indiana driver's license. The 50 hours must be witnessed by a passenger who is at least 25 years old (or a spouse who is at least 21 years old).

You must record your 50 driving hours in a 'Log of Supervised Driving', which you need to present to the BMV when you apply for the driver's license.

Once you have completed the 50 hours of supervised driving. Follow the steps above on how to apply for an Indiana driver's license.


Indianapolis Public Transportation - IndyGo

Indianapolis has an emerging bus system. The city has just added the first hybrid buses to the IndyGo network in an effort to 'go green' or be more environmentally friendly. Also, initiatives such as free bus rides on particular days to promote less fuel consumption, bike racks on the front of all buses to promote biking to work, the grocery store, a friend's home, wherever; the IndyGo company has made a commitment to creating a more sustainable business.

IndyGo general bus schedule:

Most buses come every half an hour during peak times, while during low traffic times, most bus runs on an hourly schedule.

The two buses below are relatively close to campus and will get you to major areas of Indianapolis:

IndyGO Bus #28 -- This bus meets at 46th and Illinois and takes you downtown to Monument Circle

IndyGO Bus #19 -- This bus meets at 46th and College and takes you to Castleton Square Mall, with a stop at Glendale Mall as well.

For a complete list of bus routes and schedules visit

Taxi Service

Both companies serve Indianapolis 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.

Yellow Cab

Broad Ripple Village Taxi

Butler Transportation

Shuttle Bus

Butler's shuttle bus takes you to Broad Ripple and Glendale Mall, click here for departure time.



Zipcars are great for international students who do not own cars and need to run a few errands off campus.

"Two Zipcars - a Toyota Prius and a Ford Focus - are now available 24-hours-a-day, seven days a week to all students, faculty and staff members ages 18 and older, as well as members of the local community ages 21 and over. Butler's Zipcars are located in the Atherton Student Union lot. Butler students, faculty, staff and local community members can join the car-share program at

Butler University members pay a $35 annual fee. Rates on all Zipcars start as low as $8 per hour and $66 per day. Gas, insurance, reserved parking spots, up to 180 miles of driving per day and roadside assistance are included in the hourly and daily Zipcar rates. Cars can be reserved for as little as an hour or for multiple days." --Butler Connection