What is the difference between an International Driving Permit (IDP) and an International Driver’s License (IDL)?
An International Driving Permit is a small grey booklet marginally larger than a passport containing a translation of your original driving license in 10 languages, including English, French, Russian, Chinese, Arabic, and Spanish. It is recognized by 141 countries worldwide and is valid for one year.
In comparison, an International Driving License is not a legal document and cannot be used to drive in foreign countries or instead of an IDP.
How does an IDP work in Bosnia and Herzegovina?
Visitors must have a valid International Driving Permit (IDP) to rent a car and legally drive in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Bosnia and Herzegovina signed two United Nations treaties. Any visitor who intends to drive in Bosnia and Herzegovina must first obtain an IDP in their nation of residence or place of habitation of residence.
The IDP, suitable for two years, proves that you own an active driver’s license in your country of residency. In the event of an accident, vehicle damage when traveling overseas, or the loss of official identity like a passport, it will also help to protect you and your family. Language hurdles can be addressed thanks to the IDP’s global recognition and availability in 10 languages.
Similar to this, citizens and residents of Bosnia and Herzegovina who intend to drive outside of their country must apply for an IDP through the BIHAMK.
Benefits of Carrying an IDP in Bosnia
Functionality as an ID
IDPs are a convenient travel document as it doubles as identification documents. This is advantageous if you want to keep your passport under lock and key due to security considerations. An IDP can be used instead of a national ID card, especially if it is in a language that is not internationally used.
Quicker traffic authority stops.
Traffic police may have trouble deciphering your driver’s information on your license during a routine traffic stop. Having an IDP ensures that officers can quickly note down your particulars and send you on your way. This may be especially handy during the unfortunate event of an emergency or motor misfortunes.
Car rental companies
Car rental companies worldwide require you to have an International Driving Permit and a valid driving license to rent a car. This is due to the United Nations recognizing an IDP as a valid driving permit. Having an IDP will ensure that your valuable vacation time isn’t wasted on trying to convince a conservative car rental agency of the validity of your foreign driver’s license.
How to Apply for an IDP?
Applying for an IDP is often straightforward. Bring a copy of your driver’s license when you visit your approved dealer (front and back). Most locations also offer on-site photocopying services. Two passport-style photos are also required, with your signature on the reverse. Automobile groups make up the majority of certified IDP sellers; as part of their offerings, they can provide you with passport images. You must then complete the brief application form.
In rare circumstances, you can submit your application via postal mail. If you do this, the application will often be processed and the new permit mailed out in less than a week. If you apply in person, you only have to wait 30 minutes, depending on how busy the location is.
Penalties For Not Having an IDP
If you are stopped over and found to be in one of the nations that demand an IDP but do not have one, you could face fines or citations. The consequences are particularly harsh and may include arrest and deportation if you drive in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Driving and Safety in Bosnia and Herzegovina
If you heed the warnings and abide by the laws, driving in Bosnia and Herzegovina is as safe as anywhere else. This is a sizable and stunning region; every year, countless travelers pass through Bosnia and Herzegovina while traveling across the Balkans. However, you shouldn’t let this deter you because there are some stunning, jaw-dropping spots to explore in remote areas with the most significant risk.
Unexploded landmines remain the threat; therefore, exercise caution and stay on designated roads, avoiding off-roading and getting lost in your vehicle. Additionally, abandoned structures may have mines that haven’t detonated.
Rules of the road in Bosnia-Herzegovina
- You drive on the right-hand side of the road
- A suitable child car seat must be used for children under five.
- The front seat is not permitted for passengers under the age of 12.
- The legal limit for driving while intoxicated is 0.05 percent.
- Alcohol-impaired individuals are not allowed to ride in the front seat, not even as passengers.
- You must drive with your headlights on, even during the daytime.
- Uphill traffic has the right of way on mountain roads.
- Trams going left get priority.
- At pedestrian crossings, you must stop as soon as a pedestrian signals their want to cross.
- The speed limits are 50 km/h for built-up areas, 80 km/h for open roads, 100 km/h for dual carriageways, and 130 km/h for motorways.
Car rental in Bosnia-Herzegovina
Not all the details in the guidelines mentioned above will apply to anybody wishing to rent a car in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Here are the most crucial details for renter car drivers to be aware of, even though it might be a good idea to read everything anyway:
- The age requirement to rent an automobile is 21.
- You require an IDP
- Some rental car businesses need that you have had your driver’s license for at least two years.
- Most companies demand that you deposit money with a credit card.
- Check with your rental company first because you might not be permitted to drive outside Bosnia-Herzegovina unless you make prior arrangements.
- To protect yourself from unforeseen expenses, make sure to purchase car rental excess insurance documents before your trip. Almost often, doing this in advance and with a different insurer will be less expensive.
- In contrast to the UK, you must drive on the right and pass on the left.
- On Bosnian highways, the national speed limit is 130 km/h (80 mph). It is 80 km/h on the main route outside a built-up area. For populated regions, it is 50 km/h.
- In case of emergency, dial 112
- In the front and back seats, seat belts use is required.
- The legal limit for drivers of private automobiles is 0.05 percent blood alcohol. That’s the same as Scotland but lower than the 0.08 percent in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland.
Police frequently stop people they believe are speeding, intoxicated, or with questionable license plates. Sometimes they check to see whether the person is carrying any suspicious belongings or drugs. If you are pulled over by the police, remain inside your foreign vehicles, ask the officer to repeat your infraction and cooperate politely if you are asked to go to the police station. Even more, problems can arise while traveling if you resist arrest.
For a minor infraction like speeding, police officers in Bosnia and Herzegovina will occasionally stop tourists and punish them heavily. Anything charged higher than that should make you suspicious, as speeding only merits roughly 40 marks. There is nothing to fear if you pay attention to the speed limits, as was earlier discussed, and you are confident that you are not exceeding them.
If you should receive a fine, pay it directly at the appropriate office rather than the police officer because they are not permitted to collect fines. Paying in person at the office would also prevent you from accepting bribes.
Top 3 Places to Visit in Bosnia and Herzegovina
The most incredible road trip places in Bosnia and Herzegovina should be known now that you are familiar with the country’s laws and regulations. Driving is the best way to explore Bosnia and Herzegovina’s natural environment. Bosnia & Herzegovina, albeit less well-known than its other European nations, has untold wonders just waiting to be uncovered.
The nation’s capital is a bustling city with everything you might want, including retail malls, dining options, and places of worship. For a reason, Sarajevo is known as the “Jerusalem of Europe”! Visitors can glimpse Bosnia and Herzegovina’s violent past through mosques, cathedrals, and museums like the Jewish Museum and Sarajevo Tunnel Museum. Mosques and cathedrals like the Gazi Hursev-beg Mosque also serve as tourist attractions.
The names “the most beautiful town in Bosnia and Herzegovina” and “The City of Sunshine” have been given to Mostar, arguably the most popular tourist attraction in the country. With its architecture, Mostar combines the ancient and the new. One example is the Old Bridge, or Stari Most, which gives a picturesque view and bridge driving where you may land in the Neretva waters.
The Museum of War and Genocide Victims and the War Photo Exhibition are just a few of the historical museums that can be found in Mostar.
The mountainous environment in Bosnia and Herzegovina country is well-known for allowing hikers and campers. One of the famous mountains that travelers like to visit is Jahorina, particularly in the winter because of its ski resort and the other wintertime activities one may engage in. Popular ski areas with first-rate lodging options exist in the region, including Pension Winter, Hotel Lavina, and Apartments Arctic.
Are There Fuel Stations in Bosnia And Herzegovina?
The absence of fuel stations in rural areas in Bosnia and Herzegovina is another helpful driving characteristic. Fill up your car with fuel before starting a drive across the countryside or the rural areas of Bosnia and Herzegovina. If you aren’t driving in Bosnia and Herzegovina cities, make sure your tank is filled. The worst-case situation is getting stuck in the middle of a foreign hillside without any energy and nobody to ask for help.
Is Bosnia and Herzegovina Safe?
Pollution and natural disasters are two more crucial variables to consider when driving in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Those with respiratory conditions must prepare their medication and take care of their health because the air in Bosnia and Herzegovina is dirty.
In Bosnia and Herzegovina, earthquakes are a common sort of natural disaster. One of the strongest occurred in 2016 and was felt in almost all of the nation’s main cities. Driving in rural areas where common landslides can be dangerous because falling debris poses a risk of injury.
What if my IDP expires while I’m in Bosnia and Herzegovina?
Yes, generally speaking, assuming your home driver’s license is still in good standing. However, the cost of the automotive association mailing your replacement paperwork to you would be your responsibility. You would need to use your new local license to apply for an IDP locally if you no longer possess a valid driver’s license from your home country.
How long does it take to get an IDP for Bosnia and Herzegovina?
Applications made in-store can be processed right away when you come. Give the IDP at least 4-6 weeks to reach you if you apply by mail. Deliveries to international addresses can take longer.
Is the IDP mandatory in Bosnia and Hergevoia?
The Quebec driver’s license is accepted in some countries but not many others. Check the restrictions in place in different jurisdictions, even within the same nation, as they might differ.