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International Driving Permit

If you are planning your adventure by car, from the UK, you will more than likely need to apply for an International Driving Permit (Or IDS as it is more commonly known). An IDP acts as an add-on to your personal driving license and you will be required to have one in a number of countries of the EU. There are 2 types of permits attached to this license so you will need to read up and choose your selected countries when you fill out the application.

The 2 types are:

  • IDP 1926
  • IDP 1949

Please click the link here to show you a list of the relevant countries you need to consider the permit for.

There are a few ways to apply for your IDP, firstly you can apply and complete one at selected Post Offices nationwide before travel. You will need  to apply in person and the post office will assist you throughout, but you will need:

  • To be over 18 years of age
  • Hold a UK Valid driving License

after you reach this criteria, to complete the application you will need the following:

  • Your own UK full driving license – Paper or Card
  • A fee of £5.50
  • A passport photo signed on the back (all Post Offices have photo facilities available and are currently £5 for 4 passport valid photos)
  • Proof of identification like a passport.

This only takes around 5 minutes to complete and once you have it, it is valid for 12 months and you can use it as often as you like within that time frame. Also to note, the Postal Office can delay the start time of your permit up to 3 months in advance from when you apply for it.

Click here to give you the link to the Post Office’s branch finder where you can find a store that has the IDP service available as some PO’s don’t.

psst: You will still need to carry your UK driving license with you

Secondly you can apply by downloading and sending your own IDP off to the AA or RAC websites. They have application forms attached to their sites and it is similar to the Post Office in that you will need:

  • A passport photograph signed on the bank
  • A copy of your valid UK driving license (both sides of card)
  • A photocopy of your passport which shows your photograph and identity details
  • A self-addressed envelope
  • An original signed application form (no photocopy’s)
  • The fee which is £5.50 plus £3.00 postal application fee

There are options to get your application urgently requested, please read the specifics on the site before you do this though, as the AA and RAC give you a detailed view of the different payments they offer and you can decide which way you want to apply.

psst: Its worth noting if you need both permits for your travels, you’ll need to enclose two sets of everything i.e. two passport photos & two sets of fees.

Lastly you can apply in person only at the AA Folkestone Euro-tunnel Passenger Terminal. All the same documents above apply and its very similar to the post office service. Please click the link here if you are planning on getting your IDP here for more information.

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