Driving in another country without additional paperwork is made possible by an International Driving Permit, or IDP, which is also known as an International Driver’s License. It demonstrates that you have a current, valid driver’s license issued by the government of your country of residence. There’s no way for a cop in Sweden, New Zealand, or other countries to tell if the driver’s license they’re inspecting is genuine or a fake. But when they see an IDP, they feel secure. An IDP tells them instantly if the driver’s license you are carrying is legitimate. The fact that you can drive and rent a car in some countries only if you have a valid International Driving License or Permit gives you additional peace of mind.
As far as the International Driving Permit (IDP) is concerned, the language used is critical. IDP stands for “International Driving Permit,” which is distinct from words like “International Driving License” or “International Driving Document.” An informal chat with friends, this small distinction may not seem important, but when it comes to getting official paperwork, it is critical.
Always Be On the Lookout for Scammers
When consumers use the phrase “International Driver’s License” instead of “International Driving Permit,” they’re being taken advantage of by scammers. You may buy an “International Driver’s License” from them as a result. We regret that this material has no value and cannot be used in court. Since foreign officials will immediately recognize that it is not the IDP, this fictitious document may backfire and get you into problems rather than benefit you. And a non-IDP driving record will likely cost significantly more than the sum for a real IDP.
Is It Difficult To Obtain An IDP?
The process of obtaining a legitimate IDP is simple. The International Driving Permit can only be sold by a select few organizations. Most countries have a national organization that serves as an authorized dealer. To apply for an IDP, you do not need to be a member of an automobile association. You don’t have to make an appointment to get things done in a short period.
Some extremely “official” organizations advertise the sale of international driving licenses. A travel agency, a tour operator, an airline ticket dealer, or an international chain hotel cannot help you apply for an IDP. A full driver’s license, not a learner’s permit, is required for applicants. Applicants under the age of 18 are not eligible. Even if you only have a temporary driver’s license, you can still apply for an IDP.
What Can You Expect From the Application Process?
It’s a simple process in general. You’ll need to bring your driver’s license and a copy of your driver’s license. In most offices, you may also get on-site photocopies.
Additionally, you’ll need two passport-style photos signed on the back. No more than a year old, they might be in black and white or colour. For a little cost, this service is available on-site. In the end, you’ll have to fill out a simple application form with the help of your photocopies and images.
If you can’t make it to the IDP office in person, you can still apply by mail. Make sure to include a comment if you just relocated and your driver’s license address doesn’t match your new address. Call or email them to let them know that your application is on its way, even if it isn’t required.
How Much Does It Cost To Have An IDP?
IDPs are one of the most cost-effective forms of travel documentation. The cost is $20 US or CAD 25, depending on where you live.
It’s good for how long?
Your ordinary driver’s license must expire before an IDP can be used. To put it another way, unless you have an emergency, you should avoid applying for a new license when your current one is about to expire.
For how long can you be away from home?
You can reapply for an IDP after a year, even if you’re abroad. To find out how much it will cost, you’ll need to get in touch with your local AAA or CAA office. They’ll send you documentation by registered mail or courier. As always, you must have a valid driver’s license in your native country to participate in this program. A new driver’s license as a resident of the nation where you are now residing would be required, and you would then need to visit an approved IDP dealer in that country to submit your application.
Reasons, why an IDP is important?
There are a few reasons why it’s important to have an International Driving Permit.
With just a few lines of code, an IDP accomplishes a wide range of tasks. If you’re not renting a car, the service can still be useful because it can translate the information on your driver’s license into 10 different languages. Rental cars and driving are permitted in countries where it is required. Furthermore, it is a recognized travel document by other countries. This isn’t a replacement for a standard driver’s license, however. That’s something you’ll need to carry with you!
You may rent a car in most countries without showing your IDP (or even your driver’s license!). However, in nations where it is required, the consequences for driving without one are severe. For example, in Japan, you may be arrested and deported in extreme instances. Research the exact criteria of your destination before you arrive and plan to drive.
Traveling with an IDP is always a safe bet in the event of an emergency. It’s a low-cost, easy-to-get piece of paper that comes in handy in a variety of scenarios. You’ll also have it with you if you ever need to rent or drive a car.
Even if you have an IDP, you are still subject to all traffic laws regardless of your documents. Drinking and driving restrictions, speed limits, and road signs all fall under your purview. Unless you can verify that you know the difference between an on-ramp sign and a construction diversion sign, car rental companies will presume you know what you’re doing. It’s up to you to do your research ahead of time.