What documents do you need to take with you when you drive abroad? And is there such a thing as an international driving licence?

Driving licences and their restrictions are normally straight-forward, as you can usually find out what you can drive on the licence itself, but when driving in another country, it’s not always as clear whether you licvence is still valid or how long for.

Here we look at what you need to accompany your driving licence when driving abroad and what you need to consider when driving in the UK with a foreign licence too.

What is an international driving licence?

There isn’t actually such a thing as an international driving licence. It’s not a legally recognised document, so be wary of websites claiming to sell it.

It’s often confused with an international driving permit (IDP), which is a recognised document allowing you to drive in more than 140 countries.

An IDP is used in conjunction with your UK driving licence, not instead of it – so make sure you carry both with you when you drive abroad in the countries you need it in.

You can find out a full list of what countries you need an IDP to drive in here.

An IDP is slightly larger than a passport and includes photo ID as well as driver information.

It translates your licence details into several languages and is valid for 12 months.

If you are driving in the UK and have an EU licence you can drive any type of venicle that is listed on your licence.

But, if you have a licence from outside of the EU you are only legally permitted to drive a small vehicle in the country for 12 months before you will have to pass a UK driving test. You will also need to have held the licence for at least a year before driving in the UK.

Remember if your licence isn’t in English or another latin-based language, you will need to have an accompanying International Driving Permit with your licence. Arabic and chinese are not latin based.

For more on this story, please visit – https://www.rac.co.uk/drive/travel/driving-abroad/international-driving-licence/

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