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International driver permits

An International Driving Permit (IDP) serves primarily as a translation of a person’s foreign driver's license.

Overview

When driving in Massachusetts, you have to have your foreign license on you at all times.

An International Driver’s Permit (IDP) does not grant driving privileges. You must have your valid foreign license and your I-94 or relevant documentation with you when traveling.

International driving permits are valid for one year and are not valid in the country of issuance. The year of eligibility to drive in Massachusetts begins again each time you lawfully re-enter the US.

You are not required to have an IDP on you when driving in the United States, though it is helpful to have if your license is printed in a non-English language.

Massachusetts does not honor licenses from every foreign country. A complete list of countries can be found in Appendix A of the MA Driver’s Manual. An international version of a foreign driver’s license is only honored if on the complete list.

North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)

Massachusetts is legally required to honor the provisions of the Agreement Between The Parties To The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Regarding the Status of Forces. NATO military and civilian personnel may drive in the Commonwealth, however they must have a photo ID and a movement order issued in English and French. Civilian dependents of NATO forces may use their home country license to drive in the state.

 

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