International driving permits
International Driving Permits are a special permit for tourists, allowing motorists to drive internationally without further tests or applications provided their domestic drivers licence is valid. It is also a requirement for renting a car in many countries.
IDPs are accepted worldwide (in over 150 countries) as a recognisable form of identification and are officially sanctioned by the United Nations. It is a translation of your driver's licence and must be carried with your domestic driver's licence at all times.
Even if you don’t intend to drive overseas it is useful to carry an IDP in case of an emergency and as an additional form of identification.
Only RACV and constituent members of the AAA (Australian Automobile Association) are authorised to issue IDPs. The RACV issues IDPs through RACV Shops.
- An IDP is not a stand-alone document.
- Is valid for 12 months
- Must be carried with your current domestic driving licence
- If you are applying for an IDP in person at an RACV shop, you are not required to print out and complete an IDP application form.
- Passport photos must be on photographic quality paper. Standard copy paper will not be accepted. Head shot cut outs from 'other' photos will not be accepted.
How does an IDP work?
International Driving Permits (IDPs) entitle the holder to drive motor vehicles specified in the IDP and in all counteracting countries without further examination.
Your IDP carries your identification details in nine languages (plus Arabic upon request), in case you need to communicate with foreign authorities:
An IDP is valid for 12 months from the date of issue unless the holder's domestic driving licence expires or is revoked in the meantime. IDP's cannot be post dated under any circumstances.
It in no way diminishes the obligation of the holder to conform strictly to the laws and regulation relating to residence or the exercise of a profession which are in force in each country visited.
A person may apply for a further permit. Such applications must be accompanied by the applicant's current Australian Driving Licence or photocopy of, and a passport size photograph colour or black and white (photocopy/facsimile not acceptable) and the fee applicable at the time.
- IDPs may NOT be issued to persons under 18 years of age regardless of whether they hold a national driving licence. In addition, IDPs cannot be issued to holders of Learner Permits Licences or other limited/restricted use licences, issued under the directive of a State Court of Law.
- IDP's can be issued to External Territory licence holders from Norfolk Island, Christmas Island and Cocos Keeling Islands.
- There is no upper age limit for the use of IDPs.
Which countries require you to carry an IDP?
Different countries have different identification requirements when driving a vehicle. Some countries require international motorists to possess an IDP. Check your destination's International Driving Permit requirements before you go.
How do I apply for an IDP?
To obtain an IDP you can apply by post or in person at your nearest RACV Shop.
To apply by post:
Print and fill out the IDP application form. Send your completed form and a clear copy of your current Australian Driver's Licence (both front and back), a recent passport size photo and payment including postage fees to -
550 Princes Highway
Noble Park North, VIC, 3174
Another option is to send your application to a family member or friend who can arrange the IDP on your behalf and send it back to you.
If you are applying for or requesting the reissue of an International Driving Permit (IDP) from overseas, you are also required to provide:
- proof that you are not resident in the country from which you are making the application (e.g. Copy of Australian passport)
- proof of travel plans to other countries (e.g. Travel agent itinerary), and
- the date of your return to Australia (e.g. Visa)
Download an IDP application form (PDF 178KB)
To apply in person:
Visit your nearest RACV Shop with your current Australian Driver's Licence and a recent passport size and style photo. Passport photos must be on photographic quality paper. Standard copy paper will not be accepted. Head shot cut outs from 'other' photos will not be accepted. IDP photos are available for purchase at selected RACV Shops.
Note: When applying for an IDP in person at an RACV shop, an application form is not required.
How much does an IDP cost?
An IDP costs $35.50 each. This does not include the added cost of postage if applying by mail.
Related IDP guides and booklets
These are some helpful booklets and guides to help you have a safer journey when driving overseas.
How to contact us
Call RACV on 13 13 29 or from overseas +61 3 8792 4052.