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    International Driving Permit for a Car Hire

    What is an International Driving Permit for?

    An International Driving Permit is a document required by some countries and some car hire suppliers for when driving abroad. It accompanies your main national driving licence. It is advised to have this document when you take your vehicle to another country or even if you decide to hire one within the country you’re visiting. This document contains different languages and allows you to drive in numerous international countries in accordance with their local regulations. Apart from the international driving permit being mandatory in only a few countries, it is still highly recommended that you take it with you when visiting abroad. This document was originally designed to allow local transit authorities to read its content in a language they’ll understand.

    In what countries is it compulsory to have an International Driving Permit?

    It is not compulsory in all countries to carry an international driving permit. For instance, within the European Union (EU) or the European Economic Area (EEA) it is not compulsory to have an international driving permit for driving licence holders of some EU states.

    The Driving & Vehicle Licencing Agency (DVLA), recommends that if you are planning to drive abroad, you verify beforehand with that countries agencies as to what is required to drive locally. Some car hire suppliers do actually require you to present an international driving permit along with your national driving licence before collecting your vehicle. It is therefore very important to read your car suppliers full terms and conditions to verify if you indeed need to show an international driving permit, otherwise you may be refused a vehicle.

    If you contact Auto Europe via phone or email, we will confirm whether or not you will need an international driving permit during your next holiday, and also if the car hire supplier you are using requests this. Even though some countries do not require the international driving permit, it is still advisable to take one with you during your trip. This document will make things much easier should you get stopped by the local authorities, ultimately saving you time and even money.

    If you are travelling for business or pleasure, the last thing you need is to be delayed due to linguistic misunderstandings or lack of documentation. For this scenario our recommendation would be to always err on the side of caution and take with you an international driving permit.

    Who can request an International Driving Permit?

    An international driving permit can be requested by anyone who holds a full UK driving licence or those of member EEC states but living in the UK, by contacting the Automobile Association (AA), Royal Automobile Club (RAC)or at a Post Office. This document will be valid outside of the UK and normally comes with a maximum of one-year expiry period. Within the UK you must however, always carry with you a full UK driving licence regardless if you have a valid UK international driving licence or not.

    Where and how do I get an International Driving Permit?

    You will be happy to know that it is very easy to request an international driving permit for your trip. You simply have to make the request via the AA, RAC or at a Post Office, and make the relevant payment, which is around £5. You must be a minimum of 18 years of age to request this document and be either a Great Britain or Northern Ireland resident. You cannot apply more than three months before your travel.

    To apply for this document via post you must supply a passport photo, a copy of your full driving licence, a photocopy of your passport and a self-addressed envelope. In addition, the completed application form and payment.

    Need additional information?

    We have tried to provide as much information here as possible in regards to how and where to obtain an international driving permit. We realise that you may still have further questions or concerns, in this case, please contact our reservations department on +44 123 322 5114. Our experienced agents have helped holiday makers across the globe for over 60 years and will be more than happy to help you with all your car hire doubts. We are here seven days a week to assist you, all year round and our lines are open on bank holidays too. Ultimately, it is very important to make your request for an international driving permit as soon as possible, so that it may arrive before your travel date.