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Apply for an IDP by post

Get your International Driving Permit by post

One of three ways to get your hands on an IDP

It's quicker to apply at a Post Office but if you can’t get to your nearest issuing Post Office, you can get an IDP from us – by post. 


Things you need to know

  • We’ll use best endeavours to process and issue your permit within 10 working days of receipt into our office
  • You must send a full photocopy, rather than the originals of the personal documents, along with a photo, payment and the original completed application form.
  • If you’re applying for both types of permit (1949 and 1926) then you’ll need to send two photos and two fees (£8.50 per permit).
  • No more than one permit of each type can be issued to an applicant.
  • IDPs will normally be returned in your stamped addressed envelope.

What you'll need

1. A passport photo

A recent passport-sized photo on photographic paper, signed by you on the back. Do make sure it meets all of the requirements of the photo checklist on the application form.


2. A copy of your driving licence
  • The photocard must be valid – check the expiry date shown at 4b. (on the front).
  • You can send a copy of your UK practical pass certificate instead (valid for two years from the date of your test) together with a copy of your provisional licence.
  • We can’t accept a licence check code or a print out of your driver record. So if you can't provide a copy of your full UK driving licence (or of your practical test pass certificate plus provisional licence) you’ll need to include an extra £4 search fee with your payment, as we’ll need to check your driving entitlement. This search isn’t available to holders of Northern Ireland licences, who must contact their issuing authority direct.

3. A photocopy of your passport

Make sure the copy shows the page(s) of your passport that feature your photograph and identification details.


4. A self-addressed envelope

The envelope must be stamped, self-addressed and – ideally – C5-sized (229mm x 162mm). Please don’t send padded or A4 envelopes. The envelope doesn't need to be stamped if you're paying the secure/overseas mail fee.


5. An original signed application form

The form must be signed by you, the licence holder. And, unfortunately, we can’t accept applications that have been photocopied, emailed or faxed.


6. Payment
  • The cost is £8.50 per permit – the statutory charge of £5.50 plus £3 postal application processing fee.
  • Cheques and postal orders should be made payable to ‘Automobile Association’.
  • We can’t accept payment by bank drafts or card (credit/charge/debit).

Anything else?

  • Priority fee – if you want your application processed quickly – within five working days of receipt – please include an additional £4 priority fee, and mark the envelope to us with ‘PRIORITY IDP’.
  • UK Secure Post – if you want your permit(s) returned by secure, tracked next-working-day post (parts of Scotland might take two working days) please enclose an additional £7. A signature will be required at the delivery address. This is an optional service and is independent of Royal Mail.
  • BFPO – all mail to BFPO addresses will be returned by standard first class mail, even if the return address is outside the UK. No additional postal charges.
  • Overseas mail – you need to enclose a self-addressed envelope, no stamp. For permits to be returned to an overseas address, an additional postage fee of £7 (or a courier fee of £27) is payable. A signature may be required for items returned to an address outside Europe, the USA and Canada.
  • Overseas courier – you need to enclose a self-addressed envelope, no stamp. If you want your permit returned to an overseas address by courier, an additional £27 is payable and you must provide an overseas contact phone number on the application form. There may be extra charges depending on the delivery location.

Before posting your application – checklist

Regretfully we'll have to return incomplete applications to you, so here's a few things to check before you send...

  1. Have you signed and completed the application form in full?
  2. Have you enclosed the other 5 supporting documents/copies?
  3. Have you enclosed the correct payment, including money for any extras you want?

Already applied?

Standard application normally take at least 10 working days. If you want to contact us about your application, simply call 0370 600 0371 (choose option 5, and then option 2)