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"International Driver's License In Saudi Arabia: Rent A Car and Drive Safely

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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


Verify your ID

Upload pictures of your driver's license


Get approved

Wait for confirmation and you’re ready to go!

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Explore the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia invites you on a journey through a rich mix of old and new. The vast deserts like Rub' al Khali and the lively city life of Riyadh show a country where ancient traditions blend with modern ways.

Who wouldn't be enticed by the wonders that await a traveler like you?

When getting ready to travel across Saudi Arabia, it's important to secure all the requirements, including the ones needed for transportation, to have an easy trip. For instance, if you want to drive through the beautiful Asir Mountains or around busy cities like Jeddah, you need an International Driving Permit (IDP).

Stick with us to learn more about obtaining an IDP in Saudi Arabia.

Getting an IDP in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

If you're planning to drive in Saudi Arabia or any other country during your travels, obtaining an International Driving Permit (IDP) is a critical step. Here's how you can get your IDP:

  • Instant Approval: Applying for an IDP with us is straightforward and quick.
  • Fast & Easy Process: The application process is designed to be user-friendly. You can complete your application in just a few steps without complicated paperwork.
  • Validity Options: Depending on your travel needs, you can choose an IDP valid for 1 to 3 years.
  • Drive Legally Overseas: With an IDP, you can drive in over 150 countries without facing legal issues, as it acts as a widely recognized form of identification.
  • Language Accessibility: The IDP is translated into 12 languages, which can assist in overcoming language barriers with the locals and authorities.
  • Global Recognition: An IDP from the International Drivers Association is recognized in over 150 countries, making it a versatile document for international travel.
  • Worldwide Express Shipping: Once your application is approved, you can opt for worldwide express shipping to receive your IDP quickly, no matter where you are.

Remember, while an IDP is an important document for international travel, it does not replace your native driving license. You should carry both your IDP and your original driving license when driving abroad.


Do I need an IDL in KSA?

Remember, foreign drivers in Saudi Arabia need an international driver's license and a valid driver's license to rent a car. Having an international license also eases travel between cities due to frequent checkpoints.

You can quickly get an international driving permit for Saudi Arabia online. Visit our application form page to order yours.s

The minimum driving age in Saudi Arabia is 16 for motorcycles and 18 for cars.

What are the requirements for an international driver's license in Saudi Arabia?

If you're a foreigner planning to drive in Saudi Arabia, it's crucial to have an International Driving Permit (IDP) along with your national driver's license. Here are the critical requirements for obtaining your IDP:

  • A Valid Driving License: You must have a driver's license from your home country. The license should be valid at the time of applying for an IDP.
  • Age Requirement: You must be at least 18 to obtain an IDP in Saudi Arabia.
  • Application Form: You need to complete an IDP application form, which can usually be found on the website of the IDP issuing authority.
  • Identification: You must provide identification, typically a passport photo and a copy of your passport.
  • Fee: A fee is associated with getting an IDP, which varies based on the IDP provider.

Remember that this permit must be issued from your home country. You cannot get an international driving license from Saudi Arabia.

It's always advised to check the most current requirements with the issuing authority in your home country or the Saudi Arabian embassy before departure.

Is an International Driving License Valid in Saudi Arabia?

Tourists in Saudi Arabia need an international driving license, in addition to their native one, for both entering the country and renting a car. Particularly, non-English licenses require an international driving permit.

Our website provides IDLs, accepted in 165 countries and translated into 12 languages.

Can Female Tourists Drive in Saudi Arabia?

Before September 2017, women in Saudi Arabia weren't allowed to drive due to religious customs, often needing male chauffeurs or guardians.

While there was no formal law, women faced penalties for driving. Many protested this by filming themselves driving, leading to detentions. However, their efforts paid off as the driving ban was officially lifted in June 2018, finally granting Saudi women the right to drive.

How Can I Get an International Driving Licence in Saudi Arabia?

You won't be able to get an international driving license in Saudi Arabia, but you can order one upon arrival. If you apply through our website, we'll mail it to your specified address.

Visit our website's main page for the application form. The process to obtain your IDP is straightforward.

Driving Rules in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)

Each country, including Saudi Arabia, has its own driving rules that tourists must follow. Being aware of the Saudi Arabia driving rules can help you avoid accidents and fines, as officials are often stricter with tourists. Remember, wearing seat belts is a must.

Don't Forget Your Valid Driver's License

Before driving in Saudi Arabia, make sure you have your driver's license with you. You'll need it to rent a car and show it at checkpoints if asked. If you're from another country and your license isn't in English, you should get an international driver's license for use in Saudi Arabia. An IDP is just a translation and doesn't replace your original license.

Also, your home country's driver's license is only good for three months in Saudi Arabia. If you plan to stay longer, you must get a Saudi driving license. For this, you'll need extra documents like your iqama (residence permit) number.

Always Carry Your IDP With You

An International Driver's Permit (IDP) is a document that translates your home country's driver's license. You should carry it when you drive in a foreign country because car rental companies often require it.

You should know that the International Drivers Association can give you an IDP translated into twelve languages and valid in over 150 countries. Remember, you have to get your IDP in your home country before you go to Saudi Arabia; you can't get one from within Saudi Arabia itself.

Drunk Driving is Illegal

Alcohol is banned in Saudi Arabia, and being drunk when you enter the country could get you arrested. Don't try to bring alcohol into the country or drink and drive. The penalties can be severe, including fines or jail time, just for having alcohol with you.

If you're a foreign driver, remember that drunk driving is considered a severe offense. If caught, you could lose your driver's license, and your visit to the country would be cut short.

Mobile Devices are Banned While Driving

Using your phone while driving is dangerous because it distracts your senses from the road. It includes taking calls or using Bluetooth devices.

Due to the accidents that happened in the past, there are strict rules against using mobile phones while driving in Saudi Arabia. If you're caught, you could be fined or detained. It's best not to use your phone at all while driving to stay safe and avoid legal trouble.

Never Exceed the Speed Limit

Speeding is a significant cause of accidents in Saudi Arabia, so it's essential to stay within the speed limit. Sand storms can make it more difficult to see clearly on the highways, so be extra careful during these to avoid crashes.

Accidents with camels are also common because they are tall, and if you hit one, it can fall onto your car and hurt the people inside. If you see camels or other animals on the road, slow down and wait for them to pass before you keep driving.

Saudi Arabia Has a Points System

In January 2020, Saudi Arabia planned to start a points system for traffic violations. Different traffic offenses will have other points based on their severity, ranging from 2 to 24 points. These points stay on your record for a year.

Violations like drifting, running a red light, and drunk driving will get you points. Not having your driver's license isn't on the list, but you should always carry it when driving.

Top Destinations in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia, with its capital, Riyadh, is full of history and culture. It's one of the oldest places in the world with early human history. With its booming tourism, many destinations are widely open for visits to the public.

At-Turaif District

For a glimpse into Saudi Arabia's past, you can visit At-Turaif in Ad Diriyah, known for its mud-brick houses and old streets from the 1400s. It has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 2010 and has been under restoration.

At-Turaif opened for visitors in 2019 and is set to reopen in 2022 with new additions. When it's open again, you can explore 15th-century life, enjoy the parks, and try traditional Najd food.

The best time to visit is from January to May or September to December when the weather is cooler. And sometimes, you can get a special tour of At-Turaif even if it's closed to the general public.

Edge of the World (Jebel Fihrayn)

Tourism is relatively new in Saudi Arabia, and a great place to go on a road trip is the 'Edge of the World.' It is where you can see the impressive Tuwaiq cliffs with a view of the desert below. The site closes at 6 p.m., so go early. You can camp there, but only on Fridays and Saturdays.

The weather is best from November to February, as it's not too hot. It can get busy on weekends with both local and international visitors.

For the trip, it's a good idea to use an SUV and GPS to find your way. If you need clarification about going alone, you can join a group or convoy for safety.

Al Wahbah crater

The Al Wahbah crater, a large crater on the edge of the Harrat Kishb basalt plateau in Saudi Arabia, is a must-see. It's about four kilometers across and 250 meters deep, with a lake at the bottom with shiny white sodium phosphate crystals.

You can only get there by car since there's no public transport. Visitors can hike to the bottom in about an hour, but climbing back up may take twice as long. It's best to visit between November and February when it's cooler. To avoid the heat, start your hike in the early morning or late afternoon.

Driving Directions: (4 hr via Route 4252)

  • From King Abdulaziz International Airport, head east on Al-Nuzhah/Route 320 and turn right.
  • At the roundabout, take the 3rd exit and the ramp onto Al-Nuzhah/Route 320.
  • Continue down the route and take a slight right.
  • Take another slight right onto Route 5/Route 55M.
  • Continue onto Route 4050 and keep left until you merge back onto Route 4050.
  • Take the ramp onto Route 15 and continue onto King Faisal.
  • Make two left turns, then continue straight onto Route 4700.
  • Turn right, then make another right turn onto Route 4420.
  • Make a U-turn.
  • Turn right onto Route 4252, and keep right to stay on the route.
  • Turn right onto Route 4174, then turn left.
  • Take another left turn onto Route 4174 and continue onto Route 8454.
  • Turn right onto Wahba Crater Rd and continue straight ahead.

Al-Ahsa Oasis

The Al-Ahsa Oasis, added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2018, is a historic oasis in the Al-Ahsa region of Eastern Saudi Arabia. For more sights, you can explore the Al-Qarah mountains and their caves. Also, visit the area's famous natural springs, known for their minerals, which are believed to have health benefits.

For souvenirs, check out Souq Al-Qaisariya, one of the oldest markets, where you can buy reminders of your visit and experience a piece of Al-Ahsa's historical trade hub.

The best time to visit Al-Ahsa is from March to May, when the weather is milder, and tourism is at its peak. For a more peaceful visit, December to February is more relaxed and less crowded.

Ushaiger Heritage Village

Visit the Ushaiger Heritage Village in Najd to see a traditional village with golden mud-brick houses and winding streets. The village is named after a nearby blond-colored hill.

When you go to Ushaiger, you can learn about the culture of the people who have lived there for generations. The locals set up small museums to show visitors their history and lifestyle. The people in the village are welcoming and may even offer to share a meal or snack with you.

The best time to visit is from November to February. Weekdays are quieter for meeting locals, while weekends are busier with tourists.

The National Museum of Saudi Arabia

Take a more educational route to experience Saudi Arabia by visiting its National museum. Get ready to know more about the origins of life, the country's earliest settlers, and the birth of Islam.

The museum continually offers guests new programs and activities, so no one is bound to get bored. If you prefer to roam the museum's halls by yourself, interactive tours are present to provide you with enough insight and information.

Visitors can visit every day, but specific schedules are imposed.

  • On weekdays (Sunday to Thursday)
  • 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. (Sunday to Thursday) - For students
  • 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. (Sunday) - Open to the public
  • 12:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. (Monday to Thursday) - Open to the public
  • On weekends (Friday and Saturday)
  • 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Friday
  • 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Saturday

Travel to Saudi Arabia with Ease with an IDP

If you plan to drive in Saudi Arabia, you'll need an International Driving Permit (IDP). It allows you to legally rent a car and provides added security. Remember to follow traffic rules and respect local customs. Carry your IDP alongside your native license. Get your IDP now to discover Saudi Arabia's hidden treasures at your own pace! Don't forget to check out our International Driving Permit Packages.

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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