International Driving Permit Cuba

International Driving Permit Cuba

Cuba, the largest island in the Caribbean, is full of history, culture, and fascinating mysticism. Live music plays through the cobblestone squares of Old Havana, a World Heritage Site, and vintage cars are still roaming the streets. The beautiful old buildings of the Cuban colonial city evoke a sense of a country where time has stopped.

Cuba is also rich in natural beauty. This vast island has more than 5,000 kilometers of coastline, many of which are lined with dazzling beaches. Coral reefs sparkle in turquoise waters, and Cuba’s lush countryside and high islands have hosted the president. The most convenient way to tour this beautiful island is by renting your car.

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.

Why do people carry IDPs?

International driving permits are accepted by more than 150 governments and can contain information, including your name, photo, and driving license number. You can also use this software to convert a person’s identity information into different languages; this helps the system speak the same vocabulary. Many nations strongly recommend international driving permits, and other countries cannot issue an ID for use in conjunction with American driver’s licenses. The International driving permit accompanying the US driver’s license is only available in the United States. Several foreign countries require that the driver be legally registered with the international driving permit recognized. Driving if a driver does not have a valid driving license is liable to a fine. Make sure the foreign country requirements before traveling are checked.

United Nations agreement on traffic regulations

The Geneva Convention on Road Transports was signed in Geneva on September 19, 1949. One hundred one states have ratified the treaty. Since it came into force on March 26, 1952, it has replaced previous treaties relating to road traffic, especially the 1926 International Convention on Vehicle Transportation and the International Convention on Roads, among the signatories (“Parties”). Convention on Transportation and Regulation of Inter-US Automotive Traffic under Article 30 of the Convention.

Many Parties have also ratified the more recent Convention, the Vienna Convention on Road Traffic, in 1968. Among the signatories of the 1968 Vienna Convention, this replaces the previous Road Transport Convention, including the Vienna Convention on Road Transports, per Article 48 of the Convention.

Benefits of carrying an IDP

All non-resident drivers require an international driving permit to drive legally in many countries. If you do not have it and you’re caught by law enforcement, you run the chance of being fined heavily. Simplify communication with local governments. The International Driving Permit presents US driving license information in 10 languages ​​(English, French, Spanish, Russian, Chinese, German, Arabic, Italian, Swedish, and Portuguese).

Major companies require IDPs to rent a car. If you’re considering renting a car, remember that most major car rental companies in most countries require the lessor to present a valid international driving license. This also applies to countries where the law doesn’t require foreign drivers to possess this document. Knowing that doing something illegal may result in fines can be stressful and overwhelming for a few people.

Driving requirements in Cuba

Foreign travelers with valid domestic and international driver’s licenses can drive on Cuban roads—requirements for driving in Cuba. You need to have these two critical documents. Your local driver’s license is valid as long as your IDP is attached when you travel by car in Cuba.

Using only a domestic driver’s license in Cuba is as invalid as an international driver’s license. These two important documents are used together and must be presented to the authorities to be valid. To apply for an International Driving Permit, you do not need to take lessons, attend a driving school, or take a driver’s license test in Cuba.

The IDP contains your name and driver’s license, but the IDP does not replace your local driver’s license, and IDP is only used as a translation of a native driver’s license. International Driving Permits are not only used for transactions in the countries you visit, and IDP is used in combination with a national driver’s license. It is helpful, especially if you get pulled over by traffic authorities, as it has translated documents of your details.

Inter-American driving permit

An Inter-American driving permit (IADP) is an ID card that gives the owner the right to drive a private car in any foreign country if a valid driver’s license from their government is attached. Inter-American driving permits are similar to the International Driving Permit (IDP) but unique to North America, Central America, and South American drivers. To qualify for an Inter-American driving permit, you must have a valid driver’s license. The IADP is a party to the 1949 Geneva Convention or the 1968 Vienna Convention, so it may not be issued in all countries in the Americas. Therefore, most foreign countries only issue IDPs.

Renting a Car in Cuba

Driving in Cuba can be made more accessible when using rental cars to travel around Cuba’s Islands. For first-time travelers renting cars may seem confusing, especially when traveling abroad. If you plan to rent a vehicle in Cuba, you must understand many important facts to decide. It also includes a list of necessary items to rent a car, a list of inclusions, etc.

Types of vehicles

Most cars you can borrow are old, which adds an antique ambiance when you go around Cuba’s colorful and preserved country. The area is famous for displaying old automobiles in Cuba – this nation is essentially a museum for classic automobiles! Cuba provides a wide variety of rental cars for any traveler. In Cuba, you could get a lot of vehicles such as Mercedes, VW, Audi, and other vehicles with an average price of 150,000 per month. The Geely car brand has been mentioned as a good choice for rentals. Be careful in choosing the car size and location of a rental.

Rental companies

There are many car rental agencies that you can get in Cuba that can be pretty overwhelming, but this allows you to choose which company will most meet all your requirements. Cuba has three big car rental companies, Cuba Cars, Havana Auto, and Rex. You may book online for car rental sooner; you will reduce delays on arriving in Cuba if the car you choose is all you think about. A Cuban tourist needs to have rented a car to explore Cuba. The easiest option for making a reservation online is to compare different companies offering your desired service that is perfect for your budget.

Rental costs

The rental of cars in Cuba is cheaper than the average car rent anywhere on the globe. Due to limited car availability and model variety, vintage cars in Cuba range from standard to vintage. The car rental rate may increase during travel seasons, and it sells out frequently in Cuba. Tanks can be purchased separately or covered by the rental. A one-way trip to Cuba is allowed and accessible for all car rental agencies in your selected destinations.

Age requirements

The minimum yearly age requirement to rent a car and to drive in Cuba is 21 years for a resident of the United States. Aside from that, it is impossible to drive a vehicle through Cuba without paying for it. Adults are more comfortable driving long distances away from Cuba escapades versus young age and are less worried about driving a rental car in Cuba unless they’re in danger. This is to ensure everyone’s safety when traveling.

Insurance costs

Aside from buying the best automobile for traveling, choosing a car that provides coverage for its car rental package is also important. However, Cuba allows the government to provide rental services based upon car insurance and not a car rental agency. Cuba’s auto coverage costs depend on you and what you want, and prices vary according to the coverage you choose and the amount you can avail of.

Documents required

The rental process for Cuban vehicles is straightforward. The car rental company will ask you to bring the documentation. You can get the International driving permit online at our website. You must obtain all necessary documents to be legally driving in Cuba, and this document above must be provided to car rental firms upon collection.

Driving and Safety


One of the traffic rules you must follow is to bring your national driver’s license and International driving permit with you whenever you travel. You do not need a Cuban driver’s license; if you are driving in Cuba and its roads, you only need a national and international driver’s license.

No drunk driving

Due to Cuban drunk driving, alcohol-drunk travelers are not allowed to drive. There should be no alcohol containers in the vehicle, regardless of whether the bottle containing the alcoholic beverage is open or not. According to the Cuban Drinking and Traffic Act, the legal blood alcohol level is 0.0%. Therefore, drunk driving in Cuba causes problems.

Caution when driving at night

Drivers should be careful when driving in Cuba at night. There is a shortage of street lights in the countryside, especially in remote areas. Driving at night without proper lighting can result in poor visibility and can lead to an accident. Pedestrians and animals can also suddenly jump into the road at night. When driving in Cuba, do not use headlights in the sun. It is illegal in Cuba, and headlights can only be used on Cuban emergency vehicles per day. Oncoming cars are flashing their headlights, indicating a traffic police patrol on the highway and a police checkpoint on the main road.

Speed limits

The speed limit imposed by the Cuban government is 80 kilometers (50 miles) per hour, which is the average speed limit on major roads. 50 km / h (31 mph) is the average speed on major highways, with a top speed of 100 km / h (62 mph). Cuba’s back roads are not allowed to exceed the speed limit of 50 kilometers per hour.

You can drive an average of about 70 km (43 miles) per hour while driving safely and at your average pace in Cuba. Always follow the speed limit. If you are caught by a law enforcement officer or involved in a speeding accident, it will take several months before you are released.


You must follow the mandatory seat belt law to ensure safety while driving in Cuba. Driver and passenger seat belts are compulsory. If you are traveling with your child, you must use a child seat. If you are driving a rental car in Cuba and your child is under two years old, the child seat system is an essential tool. The child seat system helps reduce the risk of injury to the child in an accident. Children under the age of 12 cannot sit in the passenger seat.

Legal driving age

Young people love adventure and experiencing new things, like trying to drive in Havana, Cuba. Excitement and thrills can lead to law violations and accidents. Unlike the legal driving age of 18 in Cuba, the driving period of Cuba is 21 years or older and requires a valid domestic and international driver’s license for one year.

Driving and overtaking

When driving to Cuba, go on the right side of the road towards Cuba. This is almost the same side of the road that other countries have. By following the driving guidelines, you can drive safely in Cuba. Therefore, you need to know that traffic rules apply on the right side of the road, and you need to go on the right side and overtake the left side. The way through Cuba is simple, easy to understand, and easy to remember. Cuba travels on the right side of the road, so you cannot overtake on the right side but the left.

Emergency numbers

Police-106 Ambulance-104 Fire brigade-105

Top 5 Places to Visit in Cuba


The UNESCO World Heritage Site of Old Havana or Old Havana is part of the well-preserved history of Cuba. Strolling down the cobbled streets and seeing the magnificent Baroque and neoclassical buildings make it easy to imagine what Cuba’s life was like 200 years ago. Significant renovations are breathing new life into historic buildings. The main attraction is Cathedral Square, where the Cuban Baroque Cathedral in San Cristobal is located. Legendary restaurant, Hemingway hangout Bodeguita del Medio, and Castillo de la Real Fuerza Military Fortress. Also, Plaza Vieja is one of Havana’s top spots in the old town.


One of Cuba’s most famous beach destinations, Varadero has one of the best beaches in the Caribbean. It extends along the Hikakos Peninsula, which juts out into the sea off the north coast, and the drawbridge connects it to the mainland. Over 50 hotels line the strips bordered by this famous palm tree, and its illustrious white sands attract visitors worldwide. Varadero’s tranquil Parque Josone also has a lush flower garden, restaurants, a swimming pool, and a small lake that can be rowed by rowboat. Other popular activities besides diving and snorkeling are deep-sea fishing, golf, skydiving, and day trips to cultural attractions.


Exploring the city of Trinidad, Cuba, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is like going back in time. Beautifully restored buildings and cobbled streets in the city center create a quaint colonial atmosphere. Much of the architecture dates back to the 17th and 19th centuries when Trinidad flourished in both the sugar and enslaved person trade. Today, Trinidad is one of the best cities to visit in Cuba, alongside Havana. Enjoy the vibrant atmosphere at the cobbled Plaza Mayor, the city’s central square. Above the square stands the Neoclassical Church of the Holy Trinity.

Cayo Coco

Known for its beautiful beaches, Cayo Largo del Sur Island’s Playa Paraiso (Paradise Beach) is one of the best beaches in Cuba. This sublime beach of powder-white sand and baby-blue waters covers the protected western edge of the island and blends with the similarly gorgeous Playa Lena. Cayo Largo del Sul Island is a genuinely sun-worshiping destination, usually in a dry and sunny climate, with some of Cuba’s most beautiful beaches, many hotels and resorts, and several attractions.

Parque Nacional Viñales

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Parkenacio Narvinales is a beautiful and lush valley of Sierra de Los Organos, north of Pinar del Rio. A steep limestone hill called Mogote cuts through the valley, creating a dramatic landscape. The valley floor of Parkenaciano Narvinales is an agricultural area where tobacco, fruits, and vegetables are grown. The park offers excellent hiking and horseback riding on the hills for outdoor enthusiasts. The nearby charming town of Viñales is an ideal base for exploring the surrounding area. Tour operators also offer day trips from here in Havana.


Can foreigners drive in Cuba?

Foreign travelers with valid national and international driving licenses can take the Cuban route. The Cuban government requires drivers.

Can you drive in Cuba with a US license?

Foreign visitors may drive in this country assuming they carry a valid International Driving Permit or a valid national driver’s license. IDPs are documents to translate drivers’ licenses into 12 languages across the world.

Is a local driver’s license valid in Cuba?

International drivers with valid national and foreign country passports can travel through Cuba. It is mandatory to be able to travel to Cuba, and this is the documentation necessary. If you drive a Cuban auto, you can obtain a local driver’s license. Using a national driver’s license in Cuba is invalid, as is a foreign driver’s license, and they must be used and presented together with the relevant authorities.

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