When you compare it to other countries, the UK is slightly different as it does not allow online applications for its residents. The way you do this is to contact your local post office and apply for an IDP, which will cost you £5.5. You will also need to provide your license and a copy of your passport.
The best way to find out where you need a specific IDP is to check the official government website. For example, Spain and France require separate international driving licenses. Remember that this is not a document you can carry on your own, which means you will still need to provide your driver’s license when required.
The answer to some questions depends on how you are traveling, which means you will need additional documents when using your vehicle. For example, your passport must be valid for the next six months to enter Europe. You will also need your VC5 or logbook, a UK sticker (optional) and a green card.
Even when the UK left the EU, things were the same when driving abroad. The same laws apply to residents traveling to the EU and European Economic Area, which means you will only need your permit. In most cases, you won’t need to have an IDP, but there are a few exceptions you should be aware of.
The majority of countries in other continents will require an IDP from UK residents. As for the UK, most Balkan countries will also require one, but this will differ by state. Everyone has their terms, so always do your research before you travel.
There are three IDP groups representing countries requiring the same documentation. The only thing you need
be careful not to make a mistake. It’s quite easy to manage; you will only need to check if the country you are applying for is part of the IDP Convention of 1949, 1968 or 1926.
It all depends on the type of vehicle you are driving, but since 2019 you have to go to one of the post offices to request a international driving license. There are a few things you need to apply for one, including a photo like in the passport, and you must be over 18, a passport if your license is an older version, and a small fee.
If you visit one of these offices, you will have one on the same day, so it is quite easy to get there. But, with the COVID situation, it may take a few days. So, one of the best ways to do this is to order it online, which can be done three months in advance.
International driving licenses are easy to obtain but last a long time. They are usually valid for three years, depending on your type. Once the 3-year mark is over, you can reapply immediately.
One of the things you also need to take care of is the insurance you need to carry after getting your IDP. You would want to get it after because you might have unexpected difficulties and you don’t want to end up paying insurance up front for no reason. So make sure you get your license first, then talk to your insurer about your option for the countries you are visiting.
You will have to pay 0 if you can use your insurance or a small amount when adding additional coverage. You should also get a green card once insured. Ask for one if it is not provided and check the terms of your coverage. In most cases, tourists will get insurance based on the number of days abroad.
Once you understand some of the differences you may encounter, you’ll know how to prepare for an overseas road trip. For example, in Spain you are not required to have reflective jackets, but you can be fined if you don’t wear one while walking on the side of the road.
On the other hand, in France, it is mandatory to have reflective vests inside the car for each person in the vehicle. This is because their roads are privately run, which means you will have emergency phones for each section on the side of the road.
The only difference between Italy and Germany when it comes to required items is that you will need a child helper in Germany in addition to having reflective jackets and a warning triangle. On the other hand, if you drive your vehicle in Belgium, you will not need a first aid kit and a fire extinguisher, but you will need them if you drive their car.
IDPs are issued in the same country as your driver’s license, so you won’t get one once you get there. Depending on where your driver’s license is registered, you might wait a bit longer to get the license.
Most people who have business meetings don’t have enough time to have one on time, so if you plan to travel in the year, make one on time because it lasts until at 3 years old. This way you won’t have to worry about getting it done on time, and it won’t cost much, so you can reapply when it expires.