The difference between an international driver's license and a regular one.

A driver's license, often referred to in common everyday life as a driver's license, is an official document confirming the right to drive the corresponding category of vehicle. This document is of the usual, that is, national, and international standards, which have several differences.

The history of automobile rights

The first driver's license appeared in 1893, they were issued in Paris to a French motorist who remained unknown. At that time, an exam was not required; to obtain a license, it was enough for the driver to demonstrate the ability to drive a car.

In Russia, the first driver's license appeared in 1900. They were issued in St. Petersburg after the decision of the St. Petersburg mayor "On the procedure for passenger traffic in a car." The identity card of that time contained a photograph of the owner and his passport details. Obtaining a certificate was possible only after passing an exam, which tested not only the ability to drive, but also the knowledge of the location of various streets and buildings in the city. At that time, driving licenses were issued by the local administration and were not recognized in other cities. Only in 1936 were unified rights approved, which were issued under the name "Driver's Certificate", which had three categories.

Ordinary driving license

The modern national driving license or simply ordinary driving license complies with the requirements of the International Convention on Road Traffic. They provide five categories, giving the right to drive a certain type of vehicle:

  • A - motorcycle;
  • B - by car up to 3500 kg, for the carriage of no more than eight passengers;
  • C - by a car up to 3500 kg with a trailer with a maximum mass of up to 750 kg;
  • D - a car for the carriage of more than eight passengers with a trailer with a maximum mass of up to 750 kg;
  • E - a car with a trailer with a maximum mass of over 750 kg.

To obtain a driver's license, it is required to pass an exam in the traffic police after a course in driving a car in a licensed organization. Category A is available from the age of 16, B and C - from 18, D - from 20, and E - if you have a driving experience of at least one year.

International driving license

An international driving license gives the right to drive a vehicle in any country. This is a document of the established form, which is issued in addition to the national driver's license. To obtain international rights, the second examination is not required, it is enough to provide the necessary documents to the traffic police department:

  • application for the issuance of an international driver's license;
  • national driving license;
  • medical certificate;
  • passport of the Russian Federation;
  • photographs 35 × 45 mm;
  • a receipt for payment of the state fee.


An international driving license is valid only with a regular (national) driving license and cannot be used without it. Their validity period is limited to one, three or five years and cannot exceed the normal validity period. There is no need to pass any exams to get them. You just need to collect the necessary package of documents.


  1. An international driver's license cannot be used independently, without a national one.
  2. No examination is required to obtain international law.
  3. International driving licenses are valid for a limited period.
  4. A regular driving license is not sufficient to drive a car while traveling abroad.