An international driver's license is a translated document presented in several languages, that acts as a supplement to your domestic driver's license, allowing you to drive legally in a number of international destinations. The international driver's license is only mandatory in some countries, but it's highly recommended to have one at all times when traveling outside of your home country. This document (sometimes referred to as an international drivers permit) is designed to make your travels easier, eliminating potential language barriers and other problems that commonly occur when interacting with foreign traffic officers. The license is also required by a number of rental car agencies when picking up a car rental overseas, including Auto Europe. If you are a licensed driver over the age of 18, you can apply for, and receive, the international license in a fairly short amount of time, with little hassle.
Not all countries require an international driver's license for foreign drivers. However, a number of popular travel destinations, including Austria, Poland, Italy and Spain do require the license. If you are traveling to one of these countries without a valid IDL, you could face some serious fines if you are pulled over while driving.
Basically, regardless of whether or not it's legally mandatory in your vacation destination of choice, an international driver's license will make your life significantly easier, and help prevent time consuming mistakes due to miscommunication. Whether you travel for business, pleasure, or both, the last thing that you want is to deal with headaches or delays because of language barriers and documentation. Why make things harder than they have to be? You're better safe than sorry.
The international drivers permit can be obtained via postal mail or in person through the American Automobile Association or the National Automobile Club. There is a small fee that must be paid for the license, and an application must also be completed. The fee for the license averages between $15 - $20. If you find the license offered through outside agencies (beyond those mentioned here), proceed with caution as they could be scams.
You must fill out the application for the license completely, leaving no lines blank. The application asks very simple questions, including your name, address, dates that you wish for the license and your country of origin. You must include the application fee with your application. In addition, there must be two passport photos and a copy of your driver's license included with the application. Your application can be mailed or presented in person. Your international driver's license is valid for a period of one year after it is issued.
We hope that we have provided you with all of the information needed concerning the international driver's license. However, if you still have questions or need additional information, we're more than glad to provide you with assistance. Our trained representatives have the knowledge backed by 60 years' of experience, so you can count on us to have the answers that you need. Should you need to speak to someone, call one of our agents toll-free at 1-888-223-5555. Our agents answer the phone 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. Do not hesitate to call us when you have questions - even if you aren't booking a car with Auto Europe we'll still be happy to help!