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Driving Abroad

If you are planning to travel abroad after obtaining a new passport (visit the New Passport page for more information), one of the most important items to familiarize yourself with is driving internationally. Different countries have different rules and regulations concerning driving. In order to be prepared for the procedures of the nation that you are about to visit, it is recommended that you go through this traveler’s checklist of tips and facts about driving abroad.

International Drivers License

One thing to keep in mind when traveling abroad is that most countries do not recognize a United States driving license. So, in order to operate a motor vehicle abroad, you must apply for an international driving license in USA, which is also known as an international driving permit (IDP). The international driving permit USA can be adapted into 10 different foreign languages, and this IDP is easily obtained. International driving permit applications can be completed at of the following Department of State-approved auto associations:

In order to obtain an international driving document, you must meet these eligibility requirements:

The cost to get international drivers license credentials is less than $20.

Car Insurance

There are a number of factors to remember when it comes to car insurance and driving abroad. First of all, your auto insurance most likely does not cover your driving internationally. Thus, you would need to purchase coverage if you decide to operate a motor vehicle in another nation. The only exception to this situation concerns countries that neighbor the United States. Your car insurance policy may cover your driving in Canada, Mexico or another designated nation; however be sure to verify this with your auto insurance provider.

Another factor to consider is that the amount of your auto insurance, even if accepted, may not be sufficient when driving abroad. If your car insurance policy does not meet the nation’s minimum requirements, you will have to purchase additional coverage, be it in the US or the nation you are traveling to.

A third issue to be mindful of is that some countries may have lower auto insurance requirements than the United States. If that is the case, it is still recommended that you purchase at least the US minimums to keep yourself safe.

Tips for Driving Internationally

Before driving abroad, US citizens are encouraged to review the items on this list:

If you are interested in also getting a first time passport, visit the New Passport page.