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International Driver's License In UK: Renting a Car made easy

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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

01

Fill in the forms

Have your driver’s license and delivery address handy

02

Verify your ID

Upload pictures of your driver's license

03

Get approved

Wait for confirmation and you’re ready to go!

Apply now
how to get international driving permit
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Driving Tips in United Kingdom

England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Explore the UK through the convenience of driving your own car. Be sure to familiarize yourself with some traffic rules to ensure the maximum experience.

Important Reminders:

  • Drive on the left side of the road.
  • The minimum age to drive a car is 17 years old.
  • Seat belt is a must.
  • Child-restraint is a must.
  • Hands-free is a must. Keep your phones away unless they are hands-free.
  • Speed limit is 30 m/hr on urban areas and 70 m/hr on highways.
  • Slow down in hospital and school zones.
  • Give way to police cars, ambulance, fire trucks and any other emergency vehicles.
  • Horns are not allowed in residential areas from 11:30 pm to 7:00 am.
Busy Street Scene in London with Red Buses
Source: Photo by Jay Wennington on Unsplash

Getting Around the United Kingdom

Are you planning to drive in the UK? Don't worry, it's easier than you might think! You need a good grasp of the driving laws, including important details about the IDP.

Whether touring the beautiful countryside or diving into city life, driving in the UK can make your visit even more memorable. This guide will walk you through all you need to know about getting and using an international driving license in the UK.

Getting an IDP in the United Kingdom

An International Driver's Permit is a valuable document for UK drivers who wish to drive legally overseas. Here's a guide on how to obtain an IDP in the UK:

  • Eligibility: You must hold a full valid UK driving license to apply for an IDP.
  • Approval Process: The approval for an IDP is typically instant once all required documents are submitted.
  • Application Procedure: The process to obtain an IDP is fast and straightforward, usually involving an application form and submission of necessary documents.
  • Validity Period: IDPs are available with varying validity periods, ranging from 1 to 3 years, depending on your needs.
  • Legal Driving Overseas: An IDP allows you to drive legally in many foreign countries, ensuring compliance with their driving regulations.
  • Translation: The IDP is translated into 12 languages, which assists in communication with local authorities in different countries.
  • Global Recognition: The IDP is recognized in over 150 countries worldwide, making it an essential travel document for drivers.
  • Shipping: Worldwide express shipping is available, allowing you to receive your IDP promptly, regardless of your location.

Remember, an IDP supplements your UK driving license; it does not replace it. You must carry both your UK driving license and your IDP when driving abroad. Always check the specific driving requirements of the country you plan to visit, as regulations may vary.

FAQs

Applying for an international UK driving license is straightforward. You can apply from your home country, or if you're already in the UK, head to a local post office. Organizations like the International Drivers Association also issue licenses to avoid lengthy queues. The process is as simple as completing an application, providing necessary documentation, and paying associated fees.

Can I use an International Driving License to drive in the UK?

Yes, you can use an International Driving License in the UK for up to 12 months. Don't forget to bring your domestic driver's license with you while driving in the UK to avoid penalties and fines. Your international driving license is not valid without your original driver's license.

Do I need an International Driver's License in the UK?

If you're from an EU country with a valid driving license, you won't need an international driver's license in the UK. However, an international driver's license could be handy for renters from other countries.

How long is an International Driving License valid?

If you're considering buying an IDP, you can choose between a one-year or three-year validity. The one-year IDP is excellent for occasional travelers, while the three-year IDP is perfect for those often traveling for work. It's all about what suits your needs best.

What is the difference between International Driving Licenses and UK Driving Licenses?

An International Driving License, often issued in your home country, lets you confidently drive and rent cars abroad. It's a translated document that should accompany your driving license, as it's not a standalone proof of identity.

Meanwhile, the UK's Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) issues UK driving licenses, accepted as a valid form of identification.

How long does it take for an International Driving License to be issued?

If your application is approved, you can get a digital international driving license on the same day of application. However, if you're looking for a physical IDP, it gets delivered within a week if you're in the US. For those outside the US, you may have to wait up to 30 days for delivery.

Can I drive my car in Europe after Brexit?

UK drivers can still use their driving licenses to drive in Europe after Brexit. But, if you only have a UK paper license, you must get an IDP to drive in Europe.

Driving Tips in the United Kingdom

Red double-decker bus on a bustling London street.
Source: Photo by Jacob Smith on Unsplash

England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Explore the UK through the convenience of driving your car. Be sure to familiarize yourself with some traffic rules for maximum experience.

Important Reminders:

  • Drive on the left side of the road.
  • The minimum age to drive a car is 17 years old.
  • A seat belt is a must.
  • Child restraint is a must.
  • Hands-free is a must. Keep your phones away unless they are hands-free.
  • The speed limit is 30 m/hr on urban areas and 70 m/hr on highways.
  • Slow down in hospital and school zones.
  • Give way to police cars, ambulances, fire trucks, and other emergency vehicles.
  • Horns are not allowed in residential areas from 11:30 pm to 7:00 am.

Most Important Driving Rules

When it comes to driving in the United Kingdom, knowing the driving rules in United Kingdom is important. By being aware of road signs and watching out for pedestrians and cyclists, you can confidently drive on the roads. One challenge for foreigners is getting used to driving on the left side of the lane, which is different from the right side driving in most countries.

Drunk Driving is Against The Law

Remember, alcohol affects your capability to drive, increasing the likelihood of accidents. Thus, avoid alcohol when you're planning to drive in the United Kingdom with your IDP.

If the police have reasons to believe you might be over the legal drinking limit, they'll perform a roadside breath test using a breathalyzer. Should you fail, you'll be taken to a police station to provide two more breath samples.

Failing the final test can result in severe consequences, including driving disqualification, potential penalties, and even a six-month prison sentence.

Speeding is Prohibited

In towns and cities, the maximum speed limit is 30 mph, which can reduce to 20 mph around school areas. The limit for single-carriageways with two-way traffic is 60 mph, which rises to 70 mph on motorways.

Beware, exceeding the speed limit can cost you at least £100 and three penalty points on your license. If these points tally up to 12 within three years, you risk being disqualified from driving.

Parking

For those headed to the UK, parking can vary widely depending on your location. If you find yourself in downtown London, parking may become trickier. There are many rules about where and how long you can park, so keep an eye out for any relevant signs and pay any necessary fees promptly.

On the other hand, parking is generally much more relaxed in rural areas, although even in smaller towns, you must still adhere to the rules. If hiring a car in London, consider parking outside and taking the tube into the city center to avoid the dense traffic. This way, you'll experience London's efficient public transportation system, a must-see while in the city.

Eligibility to Drive

While you can apply for a provisional license at 15 years and nine months, you must be at least 16 to ride a motorbike or a light quad bike. To drive a car, the rule is stringent, requiring you to be 17 years old. Importantly, your practical and theory driving tests will only be scheduled once you're 17. With a provisional license and L-plates, you can drive on all roads, barring motorways, provided you're 18 or older.

Remember, learners should not be alone on the road. They must be accompanied by an eligible teacher or adult driver who's at least 21 years old and has held a full license for three years or more. Furthermore, if you're learning in your car or with someone you know, ensure you're covered by insurance.

Car Insurance

Car insurance is crucial when motoring abroad to avoid unexpected charges during emergencies. Don't stress about insurance if you're renting a vehicle in the UK; it's taken care of. However, if you're taking your car, you must have car insurance.

Top Destinations of the United Kingdom

The United Kingdom, with its top destinations to visit in the UK, presents a rich tapestry of options, ranging from historical and cultural landmarks in England, such as the British Museum and York Minster, to natural wonders like the Lake District National Park. Among these key attractions are the Eden Project's unique biomes, Chester Zoo's award-winning gardens, and the architectural marvel of York Minster, each providing a distinct and memorable experience for visitors.

Big Ben and Houses of Parliament in London, England.
Source: Photo by Jamie Street on Unsplash

England, a vibrant part of the British Isles, is a traveler's favorite. It uniquely blends fascinating cities, cultural richness, and historical significance. Historic sites here span the ages, from ancient Roman remnants to medieval town centers and prehistoric monoliths.

Whether a first-timer or a frequent visitor to England, you'll always discover delightful sights and experiences. To make your journey smooth, remember to secure your IDP promptly.

The British Museum

Home to over 13 million artifacts, the British Museum provides an opportunity for a unique journey through history. From Europe to China and from the ancient civilizations of Rome, Greece, Egypt, Assyria, and Babylonia, each collection offers something unique. Highlights include the world-renowned Rosetta Stone and the Elgin Marbles from Athens' Parthenon.

York Minster and Historic Yorkshire

Located within York's historic district, the 'York Minster' of the Church of England stands gracefully. This architectural marvel is nestled amidst charming half-timbered homes, quaint shops, historical guild halls, and churches. York also features a three-mile-long wall encircling its romantic streets. Walking along this wall offers spectacular views of the city and the countryside.

Chester Zoo

England's Chester Zoo is a top destination, not just for families or animal lovers. It also offers award-winning gardens.

Beyond viewing the animals, Chester Zoo offers more activities to do. Allocate a whole day to enjoy everything it offers. Don't miss the Chester Cathedral nearby.

National Park

England's Lake District National Park stretches over 900 square miles, offering impressive tourist sights. Notably, you can explore Scafell Pike, the highest peak in England.

Don't forget to explore quaint towns like Grasmere scattered across the region. Take a scenic boat ride across Lake Windermere and Ullswater, and you'll enjoy some of the most breathtaking views in the world.

Eden Project

Based in Cornwall, the Eden Project boasts a fascinating assortment of worldwide plant species. It comprises distinctive biomes, or large dome-shaped greenhouses, filled with plants from tropical and Mediterranean ecosystems. This remarkable collection can be found within a former quarry.

Beyond its diverse flora, the Eden Project hosts various art and music events annually.

Roam the Streets of the UK Without Hassle with an IDP

If you're considering exploring London's historical roads or going through the UK's vast, beautiful countryside, remember that your IDP is the key to smooth and hassle-free UK adventures.

So why wait? See our International Driving License packages today and apply for an IDP to get started on your adventures!

You’ll need an International Driver’s Permit. Or do you? 🤔

Take this short quiz to learn whether an International Driving Permit is required and valid.

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In which country did you get your driver’s license issued?

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