I have an upcoming International trip that I'll be driving on the Jeju Island, also known as the Hawaii of South Korea.  In order to drive there, the rental car company requires an International Driving Permit (IDP). The permit basically translates your driver license into several foreign languages. It is similar to a passport book that you will need to carry with you to overseas if you plan on driving there. It is always important to check the driving license requirement in the foreign country that you wish to drive whether your home country's driver license is sufficient or you are required to carry an IDP in order to hire a car when you get there. You don't want to get a hefty fine for driving without an IDP while on vacation.

How to Get International Driving Permit In USA?

How Long Does It Take to Get An International Drivers Permit?

Obtaining an International Driving Permit (IDP) is really inexpensive. You can either obtain by mail or simply stop by your local AAA branch. You do not have to be a AAA member in order to apply there. By mail can take weeks, so the simplest and fastest method is to stop by a local or nearby AAA branch. You will receive the IDP on the same day.

How to Get An International Driving Permit in USA?

  • Locate a local AAA branch. AAA Branch Locator You do not have to be a AAA member.
  • Bring your current valid US driver's license to the branch. 
  • Bring 2 passport photos. If you do not have them, AAA office can take the photo for you. If you are a AAA member, the fee can be free or they give you at a discounted price based on the AAA location. If you are not a AAA member, there's a small charge plus taxes for the passport photo service. In my case, I'm not a AAA member so I was charged for $15 + tax.  
  • At the branch, fill out the International Driving Permit application form which is provided at the AAA center. The form simply asks basic information about you, brith place city and country, driver's license number, your address (must match the address on your current driver's license), dates of intended to travel and to drive, signature... all basic information and the agent is ready to help if you have any questions.  
  • Pay $20 fee plus the passport photo service if any. Credit cards are accepted. 
  • Sign the last pate of your IDP under your photo, and you are all set. 

The whole process is very easy and simple. The whole thing including getting my passport photo taken there took around 10 minutes in and out of the AAA office with a ready to go IDP.

Important Things to Know

  • The International Driving Permit (IDP) requires your signature on the line directly beneath your photograph. 
  • Your valid US driver's license must accompany the IDP at all times. 
  • Permit is valid for one year from date of issue. 

On the IDP's front page, it states the start date and written by the AAA agent.