Driving abroad

International permit: terms and countries for which it is necessary

Publié le null - Directorate for Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister)

Are you planning to drive while traveling abroad? Think you need an international driver's license? Before applying, check whether the country where you are going requires it or whether you can simply drive with your French driver's license. Service-Public.fr tells you all the rules you need to know and helps you identify the countries where the international permit is needed.

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Image 1Crédits: Ronstik - stock.adobe.com

If you want to drive temporarily in a foreigners country, you do not necessarily need to have an International Driving License (IDP) in addition to your English driving license.

Indeed, if you are traveling in theEuropean Economic Area, in the UK or Switzerland, you do not need an International Driving License (IDP).

For other countries, the rules vary. Indeed, your French driving license is enough to drive temporarily in several non-European countries. In other countries, an international driving license is required or recommended, in addition to your French license.

Some countries do not recognize national and international permits. A driving license must then be obtained on the spot.

See the summary of rules by country on the Road Safety website.

For full details on how to obtain an international license, see the backgrounder " International driving license abroad ' of Service-Public.fr.


The international license is the translation of your French license.