• Wed. Sep 21st, 2022

How to Apply for an International Driving Permit with a UAE License

ByElla E. Kidwell

May 10, 2022

If you’re thinking of going this summer and plan to rent a car, there are some things you need to know before you go.

Most countries require visitors to have an international driving license if they want to drive outside the country where their license was issued.

While some car rental companies may accept your local license at their discretion, others may insist on an IDP and may refuse a rental without one.

Most countries require visitors to have an international driving license if they want to drive outside the country in which their license was issued.

What is an International Driving Permit?

In short, it is a translation of your national driver’s license and allows you to drive in foreign countries without the need for additional tests or application forms.

It is important to note that an IDP is a supplement to your national driving license and not a replacement.

For added security, you must have both licenses when planning to rent a car abroad.

The permit, valid for one year, proves that you hold a valid driving license in your country of residence.

It will also help protect you as a driver in the event of accidental damage to the vehicle or loss of legal identification, such as a passport, while abroad.

How to obtain an international driving license in the UAE?

There are several ways to obtain a take-home IDP with your UAE license. It must be requested before the trip. All PDIs are valid for one year, so regular renewal is required.

In the United Arab Emirates, you can obtain your IDP via:

  • Automobile and Touring Club of the UAE (ATCUAE), which has offices in all seven emirates, or you can visit the site and get delivered
  • Ministry of the Interior mobile application
  • Emirates Post Offices
  • Dnata Office, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai

You will need to complete an application form online or in person and will need to submit:

  • A copy of a valid Emirates ID card
  • A copy of passport and residency status
  • A copy of valid UAE driving license
  • Two passport photos

How much does it cost and how is the process?

An IDP costs 170 Dh plus tax.

Online applications will be completed within three business days of receipt. Therefore allow five working days for all online applications to be delivered to the requested address.

Over-the-counter applications can be completed in half an hour.

Which countries require an IDP?

The United Arab Emirates Automobile and Touring Club website lists 174 countries that require an IDP, including Spain, Oman, Germany, Britain and India.

Do I need an IDP to drive in the UAE?

The UAE has signed two UN conventions that have made it mandatory for visitors to have a valid IDP in order to rent a car and drive.

Every visitor planning to drive in the Emirates should ensure they obtain an IDP in their home country or country of residence before travelling.

If you live in the United Arab Emirates and have an Emirati license, you do not need to obtain an IDP to drive here.

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Updated: May 10, 2022, 12:27 p.m.

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