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Drive-Alive Motoring holidays in Europe.

International Driving Permit

International Driving Permits for UK residents

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Drive-Alive Holidays provides motoring holidays in Europe. The following information is intended as a guide to the situation regarding International Driving Permits in Europe.

 Not a UK resident?

Holders of UK photocard driving licences do not require an International Driving Permit for countries in the EU and EFTA following Brexit. 

If you are not the holder of a full photocard UK driving licence then fuller information can be obtained from the Post Office who issues IDPs from many of it's Post Offices. IDPs cannot be obtained online but the Post Office website includes links to the Post Offices who issue IDPs. The current cost is £5.50. You will need your UK photocard driving licence (or old style paper licence, plus your passport) plus a passport style photo. Make sure you specify all the countries you might drive through, as unfortunately the IDP requirements differ even within Europe. For example, you will need seperate IDPs for France and Spain. Again, there is a list of the different countries' requirements worldwide on the official government site.

If you have an old style all green licence it is recommended, but not required, that you obtain the IDP for Italy and Spain.

An IDP is not a substitute for a full UK driving licence, but is an additional document to be used alongside your driving licence.

International Driving Permits are available to people over the age of 18 who hold valid full UK (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) driving licences. An IDP is valid for either 12 months or 3 years (depending on type of IDP) from the date of issue. IDP applications can only be made up to three months in advance. An IDP may be post-dated up to three months in advance but cannot be backdated. Recognised internationally, it normally allows you to drive a private motor vehicle abroad when accompanied by a valid UK driving licence.

  • If you're going for more than three months, to live or to work, you should make enquiries about your personal position before relying on a permit. You might need to obtain a driving licence from the country you are living or working in.

How to apply

The best website to find out which countries require which type of IDP is the official UK government site

All information on this page is provided as a service to our clients. It is intended as a guide to the more important rules for the different countries to which we offer driving holidays. It is not meant to be a comprehensive document. We try and keep the information on this page up-to-date, but we cannot be held responsible in any way for any consequences arising from any inaccuracies. If you find a mistake or would like to send us some additional information, please email us. Your co-operation is appreciated.

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Driving in Europe
Driving in Europe
Driving in Austria
Driving in Belgium
Driving in Denmark
Driving in France
Driving in Germany
Driving in Ireland
Driving in Italy
Driving in Luxembourg
Driving in the Netherlands
Driving in Norway
Driving in Portugal
Driving in Spain
Driving in Switzerland

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