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International Driver's License in Botswana: Rent a Car & Drive

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IDP is essential when driving abroad

driving abroad with idp

International Driving Permit (IDP), regulated by the United Nations, certifies that you are the holder of a valid driver's license in your country of origin.

documents needed for international driving permit

Your IDP is a valid form of identification in more than 150 countries worldwide and contains your name, photo and driver information in the 12 most widely spoken languages in the world.

How to get your IDP


Fill in the forms

Have your driver’s license and delivery address handy


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Upload pictures of your driver's license


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How to apply for international driving permit for Botswana?

You can apply for IDP without taking an exam or driving test. To start your application for an international driving permit, click on "start application" button on our website. You will need to enter your contact details, upload your national driver’s license and 2 passport-sized photos. 

After you submitted your application form, the IDA team will review and approve it within two hours. You will then receive the digital copy of your international driving permit through the email address you provided.

Your International Driving Permit is valid in over 150 countries worldwide such as: Australia, Bahrain, Belarus, Brazil, Brunei, Burkina Faso, Canada, Croatia, Ghana, Iceland, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, Lesotho, Malaysia, Mozambique, Pakistan, Qatar, Sri Lanka, Romania, and many more.

Is a Local Driver’s License Valid In Botswana?

You local valid driver’s license is valid within Botswana only. However, crossing over another nation’s border will require an International Driving License. If you want to drive vehicles and cross the borders freely you will need international driving license.

Is a U.K Driving License Valid in Botswana?

A U.K driving licence is valid within the areas of Botswana only. Passing through other state borders will require an International Driver’s Permit. Do not forget to keep the native driver’s card at all times. Local enforcers will ask it at checkpoints within the cities of the country.

Do I Need an IDP to Drive in the Cities and Districts of Botswana?

Foreigners who hold an English driving card won’t need to get an International Driver’s Permit for up to 90 days. Domestic driver card is valid within the territories of Botswana only. If a traveler does not possess an English permit, you should apply for an IDP right away. City checkpoints are frequent, so better get one to avoid the hassle.

Wandering around the districts may have a lesser strictness in policies, but that doesn’t mean that an IDP is not mandatory. Of course, possessing a special permit is a must. It’s better to have it on hand, especially when driving through Namibia to Botswana. 

international driving permit in botswana

Most Important Driving Rules

You should know the most significant driving rules, especially when it comes to Botswana driving rules. All drivers in Botswana should strictly comply with the law.

Zero Tolerance in Drink Driving

Registered drivers who will dare to drink an alcoholic beverage and attempt to drive a car will end up facing punishment. The legal BAC level in this African Safari is 0.08% per a hundred milligrams of blood. Exceeding the limit has a higher possibility of settling a sanction or even spending the day in prison.

Once local authorities catch drivers who are driving drunk, they shall undergo a BAC level test. Rejecting the test will automatically mean that the driver is guilty. Local authorities will also request  International Driving Permit, domestic driver card, passport, and car registration documents.

Beware of Wildlife Creatures Crossing the Highways

During the day, meeting animals such as elephants and donkeys is rare. However, those who are driving at night have the chance of encountering them. In Botswana, local authorities do not advise everyone to hit the road in the dark. It is dangerous and prone to accidents. 


Front passengers should automatically wear them at all times. Rear passengers can also have it for security but not required.

Speed Limit 

Sustaining the designated speed limit mark on every highway section is mandatory. Competent drivers must abide by the law. Going beyond the rule is not a good idea. The legal speed limit mark in urban roadways is 30 kph. For rural highways with less road traffic, it ranges from 60 to 100 kph. The motorway speed sign is 120 kph.

Using Phones While Driving

Interruption in driving is the most hazardous factor that leads to road accidents. Focus is what a driver needs on the highway. Disrupting it with unnecessary things that can harm the lives of the passengers. Using any handheld phones while traversing the expressways is dangerous. Do not test it. If it is inevitable, make use of the hand-free system.

Stay on the Left

The assigned driving pathway in Botswana is on the left. Ensure that you won’t stick out from the lane unless you are heading off somewhere that needs to exit the left side. Drivers who are new to drive on the left can take a few practices ahead before they hit the road in this country.

Always Secure Your Valuable Things With You

Upon reaching your destination, never leave any essential things behind. Have them inside your bag at all times. Though Botswana is a safe nation, it is still better to protect your belongings as you don’t know your environment at all times. You don’t want to lose your private things in a foreign land.

Top Destinations in Botswana

Botswana is on the continent of South Africa. It is a sovereign state that earns recognition as one of the safest and most stable nations in the African region. The country is a famous spot for legendary wildlife adventures, safari discoveries, and even game reserves. Taking a wanderlust voyage in this nation would be great if you choose to drive with a rental car. The ultimate freedom to touch every single gem around is the best thing ever.

As you design your travel plan for this African Safari, find out the requirements for an International Driver’s License, commonly known as International Driving Permit in Botswana. For a reliable application site, check out the International Driver’s Association official page. It has detailed information and a guide on how to process an IDP.

Kgale Hill

Kgale Hill is among the prominent and gorgeous hills in the flat nation of Botswana. Despite having a smooth surface, the country is fortunate enough to have fantasizing nature gems. This hill is a popular destination for hardcore rock climbers, passionate joggers, and even a picnic grove for families. It proudly boasts stellar panoramic landscapes, including the central business parks like Commerce Park, Finance Park, and the Game City shopping center.

For an intriguing hiking journey, explorers should save a date from May to September. It is perfect for a summit trip on the hill during warmer seasons. The skies are all clear, and the routes are passable. Do not forget to bring any maps and download any GPS applications for better navigation on the trails.

Wilderness Encounter

Explorers who are up for a mounting trip can have a phenomenal chance to meet some wildlife creatures that inhabit the wild. Some of the animals that are mostly running around are a group of baboons and monkeys. There are instances that both species are merely doing a random stroll on the hill.

Mokolodi Nature Reserve

Spanning for over 3,700 hectares, the Mokolodi Nature Reserve is formerly a site for cattle farming before it has become a habitat for different species of wild animals. The creation of the reserve was in 1994, serving as one of the country’s non-profit charity organizations. Aside from being a natural home of animals, there are also exotic plants around the reserve. Those natural treasures are on the list of endangered jewels of the planet.

Wildlife buffs should schedule their visit to the Mokolodi Nature Reserve during dry seasons. Though any time of year is practically acceptable, considering the weather condition in the nature reserve, it is best if visitors head during clear periods. Attempting to go from October to April can be challenging as the precipitation percentage is relatively high.

Mokolodi Environmental Education Program

Since the Mokolodi Nature Reserve is a charitable organization, they can craft programs to support the environment and Botswana’s children. Among their inspiring works is the Mokolodi Environmental Education Program. The program’s objective is to make children head to school for proper education. On the last run of the program, the reserve takes over 9,000 school children in a year.

Annually, the reserve caters to almost 60,000 guests. Because of this, the site exceptionally offers its visitors some engaging recreational activities, like rhino tracking, impressive game drivers, and campsite accommodation in a chalet.

The Three ‘Dikgosi’ or Chiefs Monument

Just a few minutes away from the central town, the inviting figurines of the three iconic ‘Dikgosi’ or chiefs in CBD, is a fantastic spot for history lovers. The legendary statues come from the hands of North Korea. Its official launch to the public is back in 2005, the 39th year of Botswana’s independence. Those chief’s epic names are Chief Khama III of Bangwato, Chief Sebele I of the Bakwena, and Chief Bathoen I of the Bangwaketse.

Those chiefs’ crucial contributions and essential roles have been the most significant element in molding Botswana’s history. As back in the 1800s, the African sovereign state has struggled under the British industrialist’s horrific threat, named Cecil Rhodes. With this, the three chiefs head to Britain and humbly request security from the Queen. History enthusiasts must schedule their visit on any day of the week except Mondays.

Gaborone Game Reserve

The Gaborone Game Reserve is in the capital city of the state. It is only a 5 square kilometer land, which is strange as this kind of paradise is typically found in the middle of the wild. This game reserve site is a fantastic habitat of the African state’s spectacular species, including impala, warthog, zebra, gemsbok, eland, kudu, steenbok, vervet monkeys, red hartebeest, and blue wildebeest. Another mesmerizing highlight of this haven is the impressive group of birds.

For a quick nature escapade, foreign explorers should settle a trip to this place from April to October. It is generally the ideal time to meet the animals around the wild. For those who want to try viewing the game reserve from November to March, there might be muddy roads, and lodging at the campsites is not possible.

Tachila Nature Reserve

A well-protected and preserved natural home lies in the marvelous city of Francistown. Tachila Nature Reserve is a paradise covering 8,000 hectares. It is a majestic spot for tourists who are taking self-driving adventures. The term ‘Tachila’ is from the Kalanga language, which means ‘savior of all living things.’ Talking about wildlife encounters, visitors may have the moment to catch warthog, impala, leopard, bushbuck, hyena, steenbok, kudu, and klipspringer.

When heading to this nature reserve, travelers should make a booking before they visit the site. They also need to consider saving a date in August as the climate is engaging during that period.

Innovation at the Reserve

Development plans surge the future of the nature reserve. Part of the proposal is building splendid lodging areas, campsite grounds, an extravagant conference hub, and a fancy restaurant inside the wild. The site also aims to transform it into a real eco-friendly haven. They are crafting ideas to establish environmental and historic crosswalks, workshops, and exciting game drives for recreational activities.

Supa Ngwao Museum

The Supa Ngwao Museum is an iconic landmark in Botswana. It gorgeously rests on the New Maun Road of Francisco City. The museum highlights its classic display of Kalanga’s unique culture and history, including its early times. In addition to the mesmerizing masterpieces inside, an incredible collection of crafts like musical instruments, pottery, and woodcarvings.

Art buffs may target a schedule of visit at any time of the week, except Sundays. Do also consider traveling around August onwards. It’s the most temperate weather in the city.

Domboshaba Hill and Ruins

The Domboshaba Hill is in the North Eastern District of Kalakamati Village at Francistown City. Alongside it is the ruins that draw a lot of eyes from the tourists. The extraordinary stonework, the unusual architectural style of the Banyayi-Bakalanga Empire, the epic civilization that resembles the Khami Ruins nearby the Bulawayo in Zimbabwe, Domboshaba ruins are living proof that past’s traces are breathtaking.

What people should look forward to in this legendary haven is the stunning stonewall’s perfection. Observing its meticulous designs, one will think that it’s an undefeatable masterpiece of a man. The ideal time of wanderlust n this site is from May to September. Dry periods are incredibly lovely to check out this place.

Ready to check if an IDP is accepted in your destination?

Use the form and find out in seconds whether you need an international permit. Documents vary, based on the United Nations Convention on Road Traffic.

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