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International Licences

International Driving PermitEven if you don't intend to drive when you travel overseas you should always carry an International Driving Permit.

An International Driving Permit (IDP) is a requirement for renting a motor vehicle in many countries and is helpful for tourists who find themselves in need of identification or assistance.

Facts about IDPs: Getting an international licence

IDPs are a special driving permit for tourists, authorised by a United Nations Treaty as:

  • a means of allowing you to drive internationally without further tests or applications, provided your domestic driver's licence is valid
  • proof that you hold a valid driver's licence in your home country at the date of issue of the IDP
  • authorisation for you to drive in most foreign countries in case of an emergency (under normal IDP conditions)


An International Driving Permit:

  • is not a stand alone document or a substitute for a valid driving licence - you must carry your Australian state/territory licence with your IDP at all times
  • in no way diminishes your obligations to conform strictly to the laws and regulations of the countries you visit
  • is valid for 12 months from the date of issue or the expiry of your Australian licence (whichever is the lesser period)
  • cannot be post-dated
  • may be reissued on the expiry of the old IDP (with a new photograph), but if you're resident overseas for more than 12 months you should apply for a local licence
  • can only be issued to holders of a current Australian state/territory driving licence (not an overseas driving licence)
  • can only be issued to people over 18 years of age (includes provisional licence or P plate)
  • cannot be issued to people who hold a learner driver permit

Non-drivers and International Driving Permits

Even if you don't intend driving when you travel overseas, carrying an International Driving Permit can be helpful as an extra form of identification.

Besides allowing you to drive in foreign countries, IDPs:

  • are officially sanctioned by the United Nations and accepted worldwide (in over 150 countries) as a recognisable form of identification
  • carry your identification details in nine languages (English, Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Italian, German, Arabic, Swedish and French), in case you need to communicate with foreign authorities
  • provide an extra photo ID along with your personal details (this can be useful if you are ever asked to surrender your passport, which can happen under certain circumstances in some countries)

What you need to get an IDP

To apply for an International Driving Permit, you need:

  • two (2) passport size coloured photographs of the applicant with the full name of the applicant printed on the reverse side, printed on photographic paper, showing your full face without any headwear or dark glasses obscuring your features and no more than 12 months old (photocopies or fax copies are not acceptable)
  • a current Australian drivers licence

Where to get an International Driving Permit

International Driving Permits (IDPs)

Where IDPs can be issued from selected RACQ branches (Please note: RACQ Travel Head Office at Fortitude Valley and Zillmere RACQ Vehicle Inspection and Assessing Centre are unable to issue IDPs).
Who RACQ can issue IDPs to both RACQ members and non-members
Cost $39

Passport Size Photos (for use on IDPs)

Where

Passport size photos (for use on IDPs) can be provided at the following RACQ branches:

  • Brisbane (Brisbane CBD, Eight Mile Plains & Indooroopilly branches)
  • Gold Coast (Elanora, Nerang & Southport West branches)
  • Maroochydore branch
  • Toowoomba
  • Townsville


Use the RACQ Branch Locator for branch address and contact information.

Who RACQ can provide passport size photos (for use on IDPs) to both RACQ members and non-members
Cost Members: $9.95 (inc. GST), Non-members: $12.95 (inc. GST)

Postal applications

To apply for your IDP by post, print out and fill in an application form. Send your completed form along with a clear copy of your current Australian driver's licence (both front and back), two (2) passport size coloured photographs of yourself with your full name printed on the reverse side, printed on photographic paper, showing your full face without any headwear or dark glasses obscuring your features and no more than 12 months old (photocopies or fax copies are not acceptable), and the correct amount of money. Please note, cheques and money orders are not an acceptable form of payment for an IDP.

If you are applying for or requesting the reissue of an International Driving Permit (IDP) from overseas, RACQ also requires:

  • proof that you are not resident in the country from which you are making the application
  • proof of travel plans to other countries (e.g. travel agent itinerary), and
  • the date of your return to Australia


Submit your application to:

The Royal Automobile Club of Queensland Ltd
International Driving Permits
2649 Logan Road
Eight Mile Plains
QLD 4113

Or

The Royal Automobile Club of Queensland Ltd
International Driving Permits
PO Box 4
Springwood
QLD 4127

Warning on fraudulent IDPs

Please note that the only authorised IDP issuing bodies in Australia are the state and territory motoring organisations.

Counterfeit IDPs are being offered for sale on the internet, usually at inflated prices. These forged IDPs are illegal. If you hold one, you may get into a great deal of difficulty with the traffic authorities in foreign countries.

More information

For a full list of the countries requiring an IDP, or any other information relating to international licences, call 13 1905, visit your nearest RACQ branch.

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