International Driving Permit Oman

What Is An International Driving Permit?

An International Driver’s Permit is a legally accepted translated version of your national driving license and can be used in 150 countries worldwide. In comparison, an International Driver’s License is not usually permitted as a legal license when driving abroad, although a small few countries will accept it.

What is the difference between an international driver’s license and a permit?

An International Driver’s License is also a translated copy of your driver’s license, but it is not commonly accepted in the majority of countries, including Oman. Although they are not accepted often if you already have one they can be beneficial to carry with you anyways, as they can help overcome language barriers.

To compare, an International Driving Permit is a legally accepted form of driver’s license. It will allow you to drive freely in 150 countries, without the need to get individual licenses for every country you visit. It is usually a small white booklet, with white pages and is slightly larger than a passport. It will contain your information such as your name, a photograph, and all your driver information.

An International Driving Permit commonly referred to as an IDP will contain translations of your national driving license into 12 different languages, including English, Russian, Chinese, Arabic, and Spanish. Depending on the country you intend on visiting, an IDP can be valid for 1 or 3 years.

Both an International Driving License and IDP can be applied for online, although an International Driving License tends to be faster to apply for. Always make sure to check information on the country you are traveling to before departure, to see if you need an IDP or if an International Driving License is accepted.

How do International driving permits / international driver’s licenses work in Oman?

An International Driver’s Permit is not legally required to drive in Oman if you are staying for 3 months or less. However, if your license is presented in a Non-Roman nor Arabic alphabet, then you will legally be required to get an IDP.

Although it is not legally required to have an IDP in Oman, it is a good idea to carry one anyway, as it can act as a translation document and also is usually required by vehicle rental companies to obtain a rental car.

The exception to these rules are tourists with driving licenses that have been issued in the Gulf Cooperation Council, which includes Oman, and allows its residents to drive between the countries included in the council. The following countries are a part of the Gulf Cooperation Council;

  • Bahrain

  • Kuwait

  • Oman

  • Qatar

  • Saudi Arabia

  • United Arab Emirates

How do I get an International Driving permit for Oman?

You can do the application process for an International Driving Permit easily online at our website – “insert website link”.

When applying for an IDP, you must fill out the application form and also provide the following documents:

  • Your national driving license

  • Valid Identification, such as a passport

  • Completed application form

  • Debit or Credit card for the fee

How much does an IDP cost?

Obtaining an IDP on our website will cost you $49.00 per year.

How long does it take to get an IDP?

The waiting period to get your IDP will vary depending on where you are ordering it from, due to delivery time. Once you have filed a completed application and provided the correct documents, you can apply online and can expect to see your digital IDP arrive in your email within 2 hours. To obtain your physical IDP, which you will need when driving, you can expect it to be delivered to your address within 2 to 30 days.

If you are in a hurry to get your IDP, we offer an express service for an extra fee. This will allow you to receive your digital IDP in only 20 minutes after the application is approved!

United Nations agreement on road traffic

The United Nations road traffic agreement is an international agreement that was made between UN countries, to authorize the usage of International Driver Permits. This agreement also ensures that all IDPs being issued are authorized for use, and also allows countries to authorize other automotive associations to issue IDPs on the government’s behalf.

So far 3 automotive conventions have occurred, with the first happening in 1926 in Paris, followed by one in 1949 which was held in Geneva, and the last one was in 1968 in Vienna.

Benefits Of Carrying An IDP In Oman

Legal requirement

Although tourists are permitted to drive in Oman with their own valid driver’s license, it is highly recommended to obtain an IDP.

functions as an international form of id

Since an International Driver’s Permit contains information such as your name, valid photograph, and driver information, it can be used as a translated form of ID, proving very beneficial in countries that you don’t speak the language of.

car rental companies

Most rental companies will require tourists to have a valid IDP before they will let you rent a car. You will also need to have your driving license from your home country, alongside other documents.

Driving Requirements For Noncitizens

short-term visitors vs long-term stay

Tourists who are staying in Oman on a short-term basis are permitted to use an IDP for 3 months. If you intend on staying in Oman longer than this, it is necessary to get a valid Oman license instead.

If you are staying in Oman for a longer period of time or moving there on a more permanent basis, you can use your IDP for 3 months while you start the process to get an Oman license instead.

When Do I Need To Get A Driver’s License in Oman?

A tourist who wishes to stay in Oman for longer than 3 months, except for visitors from the countries that are part of the Gulf Association will need to get a valid Oman License. When obtaining an Oman driving license you will need to complete the following steps:

  • You will need to get an eye test from a licensed optician.

  • Get a form from a doctor with your blood type/ blood group.

  • Fill out a license application form from the Royal Oman Police.

  • You will then need to go to the Directorate of Licensing and Vehicle Registration office and submit the above forms, alongside a valid passport, proof of residence, and two photographs. You will receive your driving license book which costs OMR 5 ($12.99).

  • Once everything has been submitted, you are then required to take your driving lessons with a licensed instructor, and upon completion, you will then need to sit the driving test required to legally drive. If you pass, you can then avail of a valid Omani driving license, which costs OMR 20 ($51.94).

  • Some countries are exempt from needing to sit a driving test in Oman for a license. They are as follows: Australia, Brunei, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Jordan, Japan, Luxembourg, Lebanon, Morocco, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Spain, Turkey, Tunisia, United Kingdom, and the United States.

Renewing your IDP or Driving license in Oman

You cannot currently renew an IDP while driving in Oman. An IDP will only allow you to drive for 3 months, and once that period is up you need an Oman driving license.

If you need to renew your driver’s license in Oman, you can apply at the police headquarters, and you will need to provide the following documents: A driving license a renewal form; a Copy of your passport, a copy of your residence card, Vision test form and your expired driving license.

Vehicle Rental In Oman

Renting a car in Oman is a great way to explore this country, with plenty of car rental agencies available. Some big agencies such as Europcar are available, as well as some affordable companies like Avis. Public transportation is quite minimal in Oman, even in the main cities, so many tourists prefer the freedom and flexibility car rental provides, especially when it comes with an affordable cost.

Like many other places, it is best to shop around online to find the best vehicle and price to suit your needs.

The minimum age to drive in Oman is 18, and international drivers must be 21 to drive in Oman, and most rental companies will request drivers to be a minimum age of 20.

renting vehicles in Oman

It is highly recommended to travel around Oman by car. For a lot of people, this will mean renting a vehicle. Public transport is available, mostly in the cities, but it is often unreliable and doesn’t let you explore outside of the urban areas.

Vehicle rental in Oman is easy and convenient, with plenty of car rental agencies to choose from located in airports or around the cities. It is good to know that most car rental agencies won’t rent to anyone under the after of 20, and would usually charge a young driver’s fee for anyone aged between 20-25.

Vehicle rental costs

Car rental in Oman is considered very reasonable, and prices vary depending on several factors such as size and type of vehicle, any add-ons requested such as GPS, wifi, car seats, and the age of the driver. Insurance needs will also may car rental costs to fluctuate.

Pretty much all car rental agencies charge a young driver’s fee for any tourist aged between 20-25. This is primarily due to the increased insurance risk inexperienced drivers pose, especially while driving in a foreign country with roads and laws you are unfamiliar with.

In general, car rental can start as low as $19 per day, up to as high as $209 per day for luxury cars or large SUVs. It is always a good idea to shop around online and reserve the vehicle of your choice before heading to a foreign country, to avoid disappointment on the day if your desired vehicle isn’t available, and you end up getting a smaller or more expensive car.

Car insurance policy

Every car must have a minimum of Third Party, Fire, and, Theft insurance in Oman. Failure to have adequate insurance will cause issues with local police and can result in fines.

Car rental companies may require you to purchase full driving insurance depending on where you are driving the car. Since it is your responsibility to make sure your car is adequately insured, check with the rental company to see if insurance is provided and if not, you will need to contact an Omani insurance company to insure vehicles, to drive legally.

Documents required

All car rental companies will request international drivers to provide documents when they are driving abroad. The following documents will be requested by the rental vehicle company and failure to provide these documents will result in you being unable to rent a car in Oman:

  • Your valid driver’s license or valid Omani driving license

  • Your IDP

  • Another valid identification, such as a passport

  • Visa debit or credit card for the payment

Hire car driving tips

  • It is recommended to shop around online and possibly reserve your car online for your trip to Oman.

  • When receiving the car you have chosen, always check that the car is fit for the purpose you need it for, and is the right size to fit all the passengers and luggage. Always make sure everything is in good working condition, such as lights, breaks, and oil.

  • Take note and inform the rental company to any damage that has previously been done to the car, both inside and out. By doing this, you will ensure that you are not liable for any previous damage and will avoid paying any damage fees you didn’t incur.

Driving And Safety In Oman.

Driving inside the main city Muscat is usually fine. Road conditions throughout Oman are considered of a good standard and are well maintained. However, driving outside of the main city can prove dangerous for tourists who are unfamiliar with the local roads. There are often wandering animals such as camels and goats on the roads.

Heavy rainfalls and severe flooding can cause riverbeds to appear across the roads. This can make driving conditions hazardous, so tourists are recommended to avoid taking a road trip during severe weather.

Oman is generally considered one of the safest countries in the Middle East to visit as a tourist. The political situation in Oman is generally calm, but sometimes unannounced demonstrations throughout Oman and tourists are advised to avoid these during your trip to not cause issues with the royal oman police.

The Crime rate in Oman is quite low compared to most of the world.

Road rules in Oman

The road rules in Oman are strictly enforced to prevent any accidents, and police patrol the roads. It is highly recommended international drivers familiarize themselves with all local road rules and traffic laws during their visit to Oman. Breaking rules and traffic laws in Oman can result in fines, driving bans, and possibly imprisonment.

It is also necessary for tourists to carry legal identification such as a passport, along with a valid license, your visit visa, and your IDP with you during your trip.

For international visitors staying in Oman longer than a visit visa, make sure you carry identification, your local license, a resident card copy, and your resident visa or employment visa.

Drinking and driving

Oman has very strict drink driving rules, with an absolute zero policy for any traces of alcohol to be consumed while driving. If a road user is caught driving under the influence of alcohol, you can be faced with fines of OMR 200 and possibly imprisonment for 1 year.

Driving side and overtaking

It is important to remember that driving is on the right side in Oman, and overtaking must be done on the left-hand side unless the driver ahead is signaling to change lanes. Overtaking is permitted in Oman, but drivers are urged to do so with caution. It is prohibited to overtake on a yellow line.

speed limits

Speed limits in Oman absolutely must be obeyed to prevent road accidents. When driving through urban areas, the speed limit is between 40 – 80km/h. When driving outside of urban areas, you can maintain a road speed of 90km/h, and up to 120km/h on highways. There are speed cameras in place on roads throughout Oman, and speeding will result in fines.

Phone usage

Like the majority of countries in the world, it is not permitted to drive while using your phone in Oman. If you must have a phone while you are driving, it must be in a hands-free device.

Top 3 Places to Visit in Oman.

Oman is a country located in the Middle East, neighboured by the UAE, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia. It sits at the mouth of the Persian Gulf and is considered to be the oldest independent Arab state. The main language spoken in Oman is Arabic, with different dialects occurring on the borders. English is very well spoken here, with children learning it from a young age in schools, and is often used in the business sector.

Oman has a subtropical climate, consisting of a dry climate with summer monsoons and dry, dusty winds. Because of this, Oman is home to many different deserts, that is beautiful to visit.


Oman’s capital city Muscat is a very popular tourist destinatin, and is full of forts, palaces, museums, and markets. You can go and see the Qasr Al Alam Royal Palace, and non-Muslims are permitted to visit the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque on most mornings, which is home to the second largest Persian carpet in the world.

Muscat is a busy and populous city, with plenty of restaurants and bars. Non-Muslims can obtain a liquor license to allow them to drink alcohol in Oman.

Musandam Fjords

For nature lovers, the Musandam Fjords is a beautiful location to visit in Oman. Although it is quite isolated, locals do live in this area in small villages. It is located in the northernmost point of Oman and is separate by the UAE.

Some of the best things to do here are taking boat rides to explore the breathtaking coasts and peaks that rise from the water, dolphin spotting from a dhow, and scuba diving. Since the population is sparse, the wildlife is abundant.

Masirah Island

For sun-seeking tourists, Masirah island is located just off of Omans coast and is a unique destination full of sun, wildlife, beaches, and history. Masirah island has a few small towns located on the island.

It is also home to an Omani Airbase, which visitors can view. Some of the top activities to do in Masirah island include taking boat rides out to see the many shipwrecks nearby, and also watching the 30’000 turtles that appear annually during hatching season.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What should I do if I lose my IDP in Oman?

Unfortunately, accidents happen, and in the unfortunate case of losing your IDP you can easily let your IDP issurer know, and a replacement will be sent to you. Since you can legally drive with your valid driving license, you do not need to stop driving while waiting for you replacement.

Can I drive at night in Oman?

Although it is safe to drive at night within the main cities, vision can be impaired at night time driving in unlit urban areas. There are always animals frequently on the roads outside of cities, so it is best to avoid driving outside of the cities at night.


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