International Driving Licence - Do you need one?

How to apply for an International Driving Licence

An International Driving Licence (IDL) is an internationally recognized legal document which normally allows the holder to drive a private motor vehicle when accompanied by a valid UK driving licence. In order to drive a car or ride a motorbike outside UK you'll need an International Driving Licence (IDL) for certain countries. If you're driving and/or hiring a car or a motorcycle abroad, you should have your UK driving licence with you in addition to your international driving licence.

To be eligible for an IDL:

  • You should have a full UK driving licence (not provisional) covering the type of vehicle you're planning to drive abroad
  • You should be a permanent resident of the UK
  • You should be 18 or above
  • You are not eligible to get an International Driving Licence with a foreign driving licence if it is not an EU licence or you are not a resident in Great Britain.

    An International Driving Licence (IDL) is valid only for 12 months from the date of issue. IDL applications cannot be made any more than three months in advance of the date of travel. An IDL cannot be backdated under any circumstances.

    Prior to the applying for an International Driving Licence in UK you should notice the followings:

  • An IDL is valid for 1 year.
  • You can only get an IDL 3 month in advance of needing it.
  • You can't get an IDL issued retrospectively.
  • There are 2 types of IDL (1949 and 1926) depending on the country you visit the type will change.
  • IDLs cannot be issued to a holders of a UK provisional driving licence without the test pass certificate and provisional driving licence.
  • You are permitted to use IDL in conjunction with your driving licence, but you are not allowed to use IDL instead of your original driving licence.
  • In some countries, you risk being fined or worse for relying solely on an IDL.
  • Motorcycle Insurance

    Easiest ways you can apply for an International Driving Licence

    Applying for an IDL at a Post Office

    You'll need to apply personally, so go to the nearest Post Office branch which issues International Driving Licences.

    GOOD TO KNOW: Fill in an application form.
    Make sure your dates are right since you can only get an IDL three months in advance.

    MUST DO: Make sure that you take your full UK driving licence (or provisional licence and pass certificate), a passport-sized photo signed on the back, the application fee of £5.50, and your proof of identity when you go back in with your completed application.

    After you fulfilled all requirements they'll sort everything out and for you and issue you the International Driving Licence.

    Applying for an International Driving Licence by post

    If it's not convenient for you to get to a post office, you can apply for an IDL by post to your motoring agency and may take at least 10 working days to be processed from the date of receipt. Print off an application form and complete the details. Then send it to motoring agency including your payment and the relevant documents.

    How to apply

    You must send a full photocopy not the originals of the documents plus your passport photo.

    Before you post your application:
  • Check that you have signed and completed the application form in full, attached the supporting documentation and evidence and enclosed the correct payment.
  • Incomplete applications will be returned to you
  • Countries that require an International Driving Licence

    Special conditions or requirements apply for those countries in the list below with one or more capital letters alongside. It is important that you refer to the corresponding note(s) at the foot of this page.

    International Driving Licence 1949

    Afghanistan
    Albania
    Algeria
    Angola
    Argentina
    Armenia
    Australia

    Bahamas
    Bahrain
    Bangladesh
    Belarus
    Belize
    Benin
    Bhutan
    Bolivia
    Bosnia
    Botswana
    Brunei
    Bulgaria
    Burkina Faso

    Cambodia
    Cameroon
    Canada
    Cape Verde
    Cayman Islands
    Central African Republic
    Chad
    Chile
    Colombia
    Comoros
    Congo
    Cook Islands
    Cote d'Ivoire
    Croatia
    Czech Republic

    Djibouti
    Dominica

    Ecuador
    Egypt
    Equatorial Guinea
    Eritrea
    Ethiopia

    French Guiana

    Gabon
    Georgia
    Ghana
    Grenada
    Guadeloupe
    Guam
    Guatemala
    Guinea Bissau
    Guinea Republic
    Guyana

    Haiti
    Hong Kong
    Hungary

    Iceland
    India
    Indonesia
    Iran
    Israel
    Italy

    Japan
    Jordan

    Kazakhstan
    Kenya
    Kiribati
    Korea (South)
    Kuwait
    Kyrgyzstan

    Laos
    Lebanon
    Lesotho
    Liberia
    Libya

    Macao
    Macedonia
    Malaysia
    Mali
    Mauritania
    Mauritius
    Mexico
    Montenegro
    Mozambique
    Myanmar

    Namibia
    Nepal
    Nicaragua
    Niger
    Nigeria

    Oman

    Pakistan
    Panama
    Paraguay
    Peru
    Philippines
    Portugal
    Puerto Rico

    Qatar

    Reunion Romania
    Russia

    Rwanda

    San Marino
    Saudi Arabia
    Senegal
    Serbia
    Seychelles
    Sierra Leone
    Singapore
    Slovenia
    South Africa
    Spain
    Sri Lanka
    Sudan
    Surinam
    Swaziland
    Syria

    Taiwan
    Tanzania
    Thailand
    Togo
    Trinidad & Tobago
    Tunisia
    Turkey

    Uganda
    Ukraine
    United Arab Emirates
    USA (Florida)

    Vietnam

    Yemen

    Zambia
    Zimbabwe

    International Driving Licence 1926

    Brazil
    Burundi
    Iraq
    Somalia

    Happy & safe riding!
    Your feedback