British drivers don’t need IDPs

IDP issued in Germany Credit: Nicolas Bouliane CC

Since Brexit, there seem to have been a number of opinions and controversies concerning the need for UK visitors to the EU and International Driving Permits (IDP).

No need for IDP

The British Embassy in Madrid has always insisted that there is no requirement for British visitors to hold an IDP but in 2022 large numbers of drivers who didn’t hold one were fined incorrectly.

Now, prior to the Summer holiday season, the N332 organisation in Spain has shared the latest information about the need to show proof of having passed the UK driving test when visiting Spain.

It has been confirmed that for UK residents who visit European Union member states, Switzerland, Iceland and Liechtenstein there is only the need to be able to show a full and valid UK driving licence and there is no need to obtain an IDP.

Only applies to UK licence holders

This only applies to UK licence holders and other non-EU licence holders will almost certainly need to present an IDP.

There are however some exceptions and you may need an IDP for the EU and Norway if you still hold a paper licence or if your licence was issued in Gibraltar, Guernsey, Isle of Man or Jersey.

Looking specifically at Spain, you do not need an IDP for periods of up to six months but if you are intending to drive for a longer period then you may need to apply to swop your UK licence for a Spanish one.

N332 organisations offers advice

The N332 organisation consists of a group of road safety professionals interested in improving Road Safety.

They spend part of their free time in helping drivers to solve their doubts about the Spanish Traffic Law and for that reason created a Facebook page in 2015 which posts articles and answer doubts for drivers who do not speak Spanish.

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Written by

John Smith

Married to Ophelia in Gibraltar in 1978, John has spent much of his life travelling on security print and minting business and visited every continent except Antarctica. Having retired several years ago, the couple moved to their house in Estepona and John became a regular news writer for the EWN Media Group taking particular interest in Finance, Gibraltar and Costa del Sol Social Scene. Currently he is acting as Editorial Consultant for the paper helping to shape its future development. Share your story with us by emailing, by calling +34 951 38 61 61 or by messaging our Facebook page


    • Peter Hugo

      01 July 2024 • 10:39

      If Spain can screw it up they will, the article could have been better written and more precise. I am convinced the Spanish government have a department in Spain that review all government documents and if these documents are easy to understand then this special department get involved to make sure the information is not easy to understand.

      • Brian

        01 July 2024 • 13:52

        Your thoughts sound about right to me!

    • Phill

      02 July 2024 • 09:17

      Good day all readers seems to have gone quiet on the 90day rule was hoping that us home owners would get some extra time to spend at our homes any news ???

    • Peter Brown

      02 July 2024 • 15:09

      No mention of how difficult it is to get a IDP now is moved away from postiffices. To certain paypoint shops the nearest paypoint that sells IPDs to me is 5 miles away before it was a five minute walk. And at one time you could get them online from AA of RAC but not now.

    Comments are closed.