An International Driving Permit — Don’t Leave the Country without One
Taking a trip overseas? Planning a move to a new country? If you plan to expand your horizons with international travel, make sure you apply and receive an International Driving Permit before you leave home.
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Even if you don’t think you’ll be hitting the gas in your new home or dream vacation destination, obtaining an International Driving Permit is a smart move, according to The Spruce Writer Diane Schmidt.
“It provides an extra piece of photo ID, and you never know when you might need to rent a car,” she writes.
A total of 150 countries across the globe considers an IDP a valid form of identification as it states your driver information, photo, and name, according to AAA.
Plus, the IDP conquers 10 language barriers — English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Arabic, Russian, Chinese, Italian, Scandinavian, and German, notes Schmidt. With an IDP, you won’t have to fill out any applications or undergo driving tests when you want to drive in another country, she adds.
“It’s proof that the holder possesses a valid driver’s license issued by their country of residence,” Schmidt writes. “Most car rental agencies will request an IDP even though one is not required to drive in their country.”
If you don’t have an IDP and drive anyway in another country, you could incur expensive fines, according to AAA who advises to check the requirements of whatever country or countries you’re going to visit.
“If you hold a Canadian or American driver’s license, you’re allowed to drive in North America, including Mexico,” writes Schmidt. “Even though you can use your current license south of the border, it’s a good idea to have an IDP as it’s translated into Spanish and local authorities recognize it as a valid document.”
Learn more about obtaining your IDP here.