Driving permits for driving overseas

About the International Driving Permit (IDP)

The need for an IDP varies between countries but it's recognised and recommended in many, especially where English is not widely spoken because it provides translations into many languages: English, Spanish, Russian, Chinese, German, Italian, Japanese and French. New Zealand is part of the 1949 Convention and only issues the 1949 Convention on Road Traffic International Driving Permit.

However, it's not a driver licence in its own right. You must also carry your current New Zealand's driver licence with you when you travel. Together both documents allow you to drive legally in most other countries.

List of countries that accept IDP

An IDP can only be issued to a full licence holder over 18 years of age. It is not available for commercial use. You must also carry your current plastic New Zealand driver licence and International Driving Permit together when you travel. 

All New Zealand Driver Licence details must be legible for application to be successful as ID of applicant must be verified before we can process and produce IDP.

  • An IDP cannot be used permanently in another country. The IDP is valid for 12 months from the date of issue. 
  • An IDP cannot be used on a working holiday. It is for travelling/holiday purposes only. If you start work abroad, you need to contact the local licensing authority about a driver's licence.

Applying for your IDP

You can apply online or at an AA Centre or AA Licensing Agent. Online applications require:

  • Scans of both sides of your current New Zealand driver licence in JPG format, approximately 85mm wide by 55mm high at a resolution of 300dpi (please note: old New Zealand paper licences are not accepted)
  • A scan of a recent passport-sized photograph (plain background in JPG format, 35-45mm wide and 45-55mm high, resolution of 300dpi)
  • Cost: $45 by card plus delivery - please make sure you select your preferred delivery method on the form

Apply online for an IDP

Applications at AA Centres and AA Licensing Agents require:

  • Your current New Zealand driver's licence (please note: temporary licences and old New Zealand paper licences are not accepted). All New Zealand Driver Licence details must be legible for application to be successful as ID of applicant must be verified before we can process and produce IDP.
  • A recent passport-sized photograph printed on a good quality photo paper (plain background, 35-45mm wide, 45-55mm high) You can have a passport photo taken at an AA Centre - AA Members receive a discount on this additional cost
  • Cost for IDP: $35 

Your application will be processed at the counter and your IDP will be given to you. The application form is available online or at AA Centres and AA Licensing Agents.

International Driving Permit application form

Find AA Licensing Agent


Receiving your IDP

After your online application has been processed, your IDP will be delivered via the option you selected. 

For New Zealand addresses, you'll receive your IDP within four to six working days. For overseas addresses, you'll receive your IDP within 14 working days, though this may vary depending on the delivery method you choose.

The AA accepts no liability for any correctly addressed document once it has been delivered to a postal or courier service for onward delivery. In the event that the document is lost, a new application and processing fee will be required.

driving permits for overseas



Important information

Delayed delivery - 

  • Domestic deliveries: Currently experiencing some delays, please refer to NZ Post for the latest information

NZ Post Domestic Deliveries Updates

  • International courier deliveries: Expect up to 14 working day delays to standard delivery times due to Covid-19 related disruption
  • Untracked international delivery (Airmail): Available for some countries, expect delays of up to 14 working days for all destinations. PLEASE NOTE: This is non tracked delivery. 
  • International Courier delivery service to Iran and Mali is currently suspended
  • Severe weather, natural disasters, and other conditions beyond our control can occasionally disrupt services. If there is an active service disruption this can add further delays.
  • Change to requirements for driving with a 1949 IDP in Vietnam – IDP 1949 is not recognized in Vietnam.


Using an IDP overseas

List of countries that accept IDP

IDP are valid for one year from date of issue. However this period may be shorter in some countries. 

IMPORTANT: Please make sure to check with the local driver licence authority of your destination for the most up-to-date information about IDP requirements and restrictions before going applying for an IDP.


A - C Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Argentina, Armenia, Aruba, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain (1), Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bhutan (2), Bolivia (1), Bosnia & Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei (2), Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia (4), Cameroon, Canada (1,2), Cape Verde Islands, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Congo Dem Rep., Costa Rica (2), Cote d'Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Curacao, Cyprus, Czech Republic
D - F Denmark, Dijibouti, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt (2), El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Estonia, Eswatini, Fiji, Finland, France & French Overseas Depts., French Polynesia
G - I Gabon, Gambia (2), Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Gibraltar, Greece, Guatemala, Guernsey, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy
J - L Jamaica (1), Japan, Jersey, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kiribati (2), Korea (Rep.), Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho (2), Liberia, Libya, Lichtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg
M - O Macao (2), Macedonia (FYROM), Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Mali, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal (2), Netherlands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Nicaragua (1,2), Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman (2)
P - R Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines (2), Poland, Portugal (inc Madeira & the Azores)(2), Qatar (2), Russia, Romania (2), Rwanda
S - U San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia (3), South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, St Kitts & Nevis, Sudan, Suriname, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Taiwan (2), Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Trinidad & Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States of America, Uruguay
V - W Vatican City, Venezuela, Zambia, Zimbabwe


Table notes

  1. For private vehicles only
  2. Certain conditions or time restrictions apply
  3. Only if country of residence does not issue 1968 IDPs
  4. Cambodia IDP use NOTICE: If you are planning to travel to Cambodia be aware that an IDP should be enough as Cambodia is also one of the countries that signed the 1949 IDP Convention. However, it's only recently that Cambodian government has announced the official issue of IDP, so it has not been widely used within the country yet. Cambodia Automobile Association would recommend applying for a Cambodian license for foreigners if they are planning to drive or stay in Cambodia for a long period of time.

Countries that do not accept IDPs

Anguilla, Antigua, Cambodia, Cayman Islands, China, Myanmar, Niue, Samoa, Tonga, Vietnam and Windward Islands do not accept IDPs or current New Zealand driving licences. However a Visitor's Driving Licence can be obtained after arrival. You will be required to provide a current New Zealand driving licence to the authorities and pay a Visitor's Driving Licence fee.

The Cook Islands do not accept IDPs, however visitors from certain countries can use their local licence. Certain conditions or time restrictions apply.

IDP for overseas licence

The AA is only authorised to issue International Driving Permits for New Zealand driver licence holders. If you hold an overseas licence and are looking to obtain an IDP, please check the FIA – International Driving Permit website to find out which authority issues the IDP for your licence.


For any further enquiries regarding International Driving Permits please email us at: internationalmotoring@aa.co.nz