International Driving Permit: Do I need one?

(Rewrite: What is International DL, importance of having one while coming to USA, validity of IDP, driving with IDP, renting with IDP.)

I personally wouldn’t spend time to get an International Driving Permit (IDP) which has a 1 year validity. This is because I prefer to use public modes of transportation so for me getting a DLL is a waste of money and time. But for those who like to drive, don’t forget to bring your original driver’s license when you come to America.

Every State in the U.S. has different rules with regards to International Driving License (or Permit). For example, in Texas, its actual validity is only for 1 month even though it bears a validity of 1 year in the card.

Some car rental companies like Enterprise and Thrifty allow International Students to rent a car using their Indian Driver’s License. You can use that to rent a car with insurance and drive with someone with a U.S. driver’s license. You can also use your Indian driver’s license to get your license here.

Getting a driver’s license here is an easy process and if you have already driven a car in India, it should be easier. If you still don’t know how to drive, you could learn how to in just a few days. For now, I do suggest that you don’t spent time and waste money in getting International Driving License (or Permit). How to get a driver’s license here is a whole new topic to talk about.


  1. Amal on July 15, 2015 at 2:11 PM

    Hello, i am Amal and my date of travel to TEXAS is on 19-08-2015…i doubt if i could get my final marks memo from the university(Undergraduate in OSMANIA UNIVERSITY ACCREDITED ENGINEERING COLLEGE)…. However i will have my original semester wise memo’s, so are they enough to show the immigration officer(in case he asks for my educational docs)?
    Can i take original semester wise marks memo only(concerned with edu docs) and submit the original final marks memo by asking my parents to courier from India later in 20 days?

  2. kiran on October 1, 2010 at 3:43 AM


    I had applied for this spring 2011…I didnt have any driving license(both two wheeler and four wheeler) with me up to now..I m learning car driving now..So i m thinking of applying to License now .. what do you suggest me ..Getting a license here in India or Applying for a license in USA?

    …Do you think that driving license in India will be of use in USA??

    Thanks in advance

    • HSB on October 1, 2010 at 4:01 AM

      Its good to learn car driving in India (if you can). But, Indian DL cannot be used here. You will ultimately have to drive a car in US and have to get DL in USA.

      • kiran on October 1, 2010 at 4:05 AM

        so it will be of no use applying for a license in India…. i m thinking of applying up to now and i wont apply

        thanks for your reply..

        • HSB on October 1, 2010 at 4:55 AM

          Its good to have DL in India too. When you go on vacation or something, you will not have time to get DL. So, get it done now.

          • Chitturikiran on October 3, 2010 at 6:42 AM

            k thanks

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