What is an international driving permit?
An international driving permit is a special driving licence that allows motorists to drive vehicles in other countries without further tests or applications. If you have an international driving permit, this proves that you have a valid driving permit issued by a competent authority in your home country. If you are travelling abroad and wish to drive in another country, you will very likely require an international driving permit. International driving permits issued in Ireland are only available to Irish residents with a current full driving licence.
There are two types of international driving permit issued in Ireland:
- A 1949 Convention International Driving Permit, which is the most commonly issued driving permit and is recognised in most countries
- A 1926 Convention International Driving Permit, which is required for the following countries - Brazil, Iraq, Nigeria and Somalia.
Where can I use my international driving permit?
You can use your international driving permit in any of the countries that have signed the 1926 or 1949 UN Convention on road traffic. The list of countries that recognise international permits is not available online. Contact AA Travel Services for more information (see below).
Many other countries that are not signatories to the 1949 convention recognise the international driving permit and accept it in their territory. Contact your embassy or consulate in advance of travel to check whether or not an international driving permit is required in the country you will be visiting.
An international driving permit is available to Irish residents, who possess a current full Irish driving licence. European Union/European Economic Area citizens who are in possession of a full driving permit from a competent authority in their own country and who are resident in Ireland can also obtain an international driving permit in Ireland that is valid for use abroad.
You cannot be issued with an international driving permit in Ireland if:
- You have not passed your driving test and have a learner permit (or provisional driving licence)
- Your driving licence is due to expire within 6 months
- You are from outside the European Union or the European Economic Area. The European Economic Area consists of the 25 member states of the EU and Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein.
You should always carry your own driving permit – even when you have an international driving permit – when travelling abroad, as you may be required to produce this licence for inspection, for example, when hiring a car abroad.
Each international driving permit is valid for one year from date of issue.
An international driving permit (valid for 1 year) costs €10.
If you require both a 1949 Convention International Driving Permit and a 1926 Convention International Driving Permit, this will cost €20.
For postal deliveries a €5 postal charge will also apply per permit requested
How to apply
The application process is the same whether you are applying for an international driving permit or renewing it. Download an application form for an international driving permit. This application form is also available from AA Travel Services at the address below.
Your application must be accompanied by:
- A full, valid Irish driving licence or a full valid driving permit from another European Union or European Economic Area country
- A passport photograph signed on the back
- The appropriate fee
If you are from a European Union/European Economic Area country and possess a full valid driving permit from your home country, you are also required to supply a copy of a utility bill (i.e., an electricity, telephone or gas bill) showing your address in Ireland. You will also be required to sign a declaration of residency on the application form.
If you want to apply for both a 1949 Convention International Driving Permit and a 1926 Convention International Driving Permit, you must make two separate applications.
Further information on international driving permits is available on the AA website
Where to apply
AA Travel Services
20-21 South William Street
Tel:+353 (0)1 617 9988
A map has such small print, it's impossible to safely read it while driving. If you are needing to find a specific address, write out the basic directions in large writing and short sentences, before you drive there. If you must read the directions (not the map) while on the road, do it where you are stopped.