International Driving License Malaysia – Application Requirement

Posted on May 9th, 2009

International Driving License for Malaysian

Malaysian who travel abroad to other countries as tourists can use their domestic license to drive rented car or caravan especially in countries like Australia or New Zealand.

The same applies to those who work overseas for a short period. Those going to neighboring countries like Thailand and Singapore should have no fear of driving there.

As long as the licenses are valid, meaning it has been renewed (not expired) and the vehicle driven be it cars or motorcycles have the required insurance coverage, there should exist no problem at all.

Readers should bear in mind that the above amenities are made possible where most countries of the present world have agreed to extend this important service to its citizens, thus making it much easier for them to travel around.

Nevertheless, it should be remembered that there are a few countries which still do not have bi-lateral relations, thus not enabling their citizens this privilege.

One can apply to the International Driving License from Road Transport Office (J.P.J) all over the country. The rules and regulations are as follows, including the necessary documents required:

a) Domestic license which is still valid for at least a year and its photostat copy.

b) Identity card (original) and 1 copy photostat

c) 2 copies coloured photo, passport size

d) Application form JPJL1

e) International Driving License fee for 1 year (RM150)

To my knowledge, you have to surrender your Domestic Malaysian License in place of your International Driving License. As no one is permitted to posses 2 driving licenses in Malaysia.

If in the later stages, you no longer require usage of this said license (which is rather costly anyway) you could then surrender it for your C.D.L (Competent Driver’s License) domestic license later.

Other than J.P.J offices, this license is attainable from the Automobile Association Of Malaysia (A.A.M) office also.

Now that you know how to obtain the International Driving License, what are you waiting for. Apply for it now and Happy Driving.

305 Comments • Posted in International License


  1. Shai Samsuri

    Hi Cikgu Yap, just to clarify again, cos there are contradictory answers by your goodself previously regarding Malaysian driving license holder wanting to drive in Indonesia. Which is it? Do we need IDP in Indo or our DL is valid in Indo. Thanks Cikgu.

    • Cikgu Yap

      A Malaysian license can be used in Indonesia. However, if time permits, ideally it is better to secure an IDL. Hope this clarifies the previous misunderstanding.

  2. rin anuar

    Dear Cikgu Yap,

    Thank you for your very informative explanation on the above subject.

    2. I have a question: I have just obtained a PDL a day ago, and wanted to change my PDL to an IDL, as I would be leaving for Geneva next week for a 3 year assignment. As I understand it, a PDL is not entitled for an IDL unless one has obtained a CDL. However, if I am a holder of a diplomatic passport, would it be possible for me to change my PDL to IDL? Or would it be okay if I only use my just-obtained PDL in Geneva, as stipulated in Geneva Declaration, without having to apply for an IDL from JPJ?

    Thank you in advance Sir.

    • Cikgu Yap

      In my opinion, PDL should be usable in Switzerland for a reasonable length of time. PDL cannot be changed to IDL.

  3. Aaron Basedow

    I am currently in Australia. Does anyone know to get the international driving permit from JPJ on my behalf or not?

    • Cikgu Yap

      Malaysian IDLs are normally for Malaysians only. If you are a foreigner, I believe you are not entitled to apply for it. Nevertheless, an IDL must be applied for in person.

  4. Willie Ng

    I’m going to South Korea in 2 weeks’ time, is there a need for me to get an international driving license in order to drive a car there?

    • Cikgu Yap

      Always best to get an IDL. But Malaysian license can very well be used there.

  5. Edmond Chok


    I will visit South Korea during end of September. I’m a Malaysian citizen who is working in Beijing right now. Is there any way to apply an IDL in Beijing without back Malaysia? Then regarding the previous comment, u said that “Malaysian license can very well be used there”, what do u mean by that? means no need get an IDL and straight away use our Malaysian Driving license at South Korea?

    • Cikgu Yap

      Though Malaysian license can be used in South Korea, it’s always best to get IDL to be on the safe side.

    • Cikgu Yap

      Most countries accept our license. But some countries, like Japan, insists on an IDL. Therefore always better to have IDL.

  6. Calvin

    Hi Cikgu, I am a Malaysian with valid drivers license. I wlll be traveling to Spain for a holiday for 3 days and I intend to drive there.Do I need an IDL? Tq in advance …

    • Cikgu Yap

      Through Malaysian driving license can be used, but it’s better to get IDL.

  7. Thing

    Hi, this is really useful information you have here. :) I would like to know that how long does it take for them to process IDL?

    • Cikgu Yap

      Getting IDL should take no more than an hour.

  8. Roy

    hi, I’m a Malaysian who’s constantly going back Brunei for holiday. I just got my PDL last few weeks. Is it okay for me to drive a Brunei car in Brunei with my pdl?or I need to wait for 2 years after I got my cdl?

    • Cikgu Yap

      PDL only for learning purposes. After getting CDL, you can drive immediately with it.

  9. Esther on

    Hi there, thanks for your previous did help out a lot on my process of converting my license..

  10. Sam

    Hi, I have got the IDL, do i need to bring the Malaysia driving license along where ever i travel? Is the IDL sufficient? Thanks for your advice.

    • Cikgu Yap

      Your IDL can be used overseas. Domestic license not necessary.

  11. David Khaw

    Do car rental companies in Australia accept Malaysian driving license (not the IDL)?

    • Cikgu Yap

      They do. But better to get the IDL before leaving for Australis would be my advice.

  12. anuar

    hi, i’m got the P driving license, can i drive in Australia?
    if if can, do i need to put P plates because their website did’nt mention it.

    • Cikgu Yap

      As Australia also practices P system, no harm of you using it there.

  13. Hannah

    Hi Cikgu Yap,

    I’m a little confused – I thought that the IDP was only valid abroad when accompanied by a valid driver’s licence. But if you have to surrender your domestic driving licence, then what happens? Are you left with only the IDP? Or do you have an international driving licence too?

    Thanks in advance.


    • Cikgu Yap

      Irregardless whether your domestic license is taken back by the authorities or not, your IDL is valid to be used overseas in most countries.

  14. A.Osman

    Hello cikgu yap,

    i will need to drive a car in italy for 1 day, getting an IDP/IDL would be costly and impractical for me. i have gotten a license translation letter from JPJ (to english), is this good enough to drive in italy

    many thanks

    • Cikgu Yap

      You should have no problem driving in Italy. Bring along English translation of your driving license.

  15. Driftomaniacs

    Hi Cikgu Yap!
    I think this is very informative and pretty much clarifies things up for us Malaysians. I thought it was complicated before, but after reading this post of yours, I’m glad it’s actually that easy, thank you sir.
    By the way I was just wondering though, in our license there are these classes/types/catagories that enable us to handle particular vehicles/machines right? Lets say in my domestic driving license I had class E full and H, would I be permited internationaly to drive/handle those vehicles/machines as stated in my domestic driving license after I’ve surrender and convert it to IDL? Also how about those GDL and PSV licenses? Would it all be compile in the IDL?
    Thanks in advance for your respon sir.

    • Cikgu Yap

      Usually, IDL will indicate driving and riding licences which you possess. FOr GDL and PSV license, bring along your domestic licenses. For all you know, the overseas authorities may permit you to handle tractors and lorries there. In Malaysia for instance, goods ferrying and transport vehicles can only be permitted for the local people only. Foreigners are disallowed.

  16. Saw

    Hi Cikgu Yap,

    If we surrender our domestic license in order to convert to IDP, could we still use the IDP in Malaysia?


    • Cikgu Yap

      Your IDL can be used locally.

  17. Victor

    Hi Cikgu Yap,

    I am a Malaysian currently working in Australia and will be there for at least another 2 years. Do i need to apply for IDL for 2 years and this will allow me to drive in Australia? Also, do i still need or dont need to sit for Australia road regulation test before i could drive using the IDL that i obtained?

    Please advise.

    Thank you.

    • Cikgu Yap

      As you’ll be quite a while there, ideally get an IDL.

  18. Ai Li

    Can I drive in Canada use my Malaysia driver’s licence? Thanks,

    • Cikgu Yap

      If unable to get IDL, your Malaysian driver’s license should be usable in Canada.

  19. April

    Hello Cikgu Yap,
    I am a Vietnamese on an assignment in Malaysia. I am going back for good to Vietnam in August and my Malaysian P license will expire next year January. Can I exchange it to international license now as i want to drive in Vietnam later? Thank you.

    • Cikgu Yap

      You intention is not viable.

  20. Isaac

    Hi Cikgu Yap,

    I will be travelling to UK for 2 weeks and intend to rent a car around UK. Can my Malaysia driving license able to use there?

    I heard that from your blog we can translate our driving license from Malay to English? How to go about that?

    Thank you very much

    • Cikgu Yap

      Malaysian license usable in UK. Do not be unduly regarding translation. It’s only a minor problem.

  21. kay vin

    Hi Cikgu Yap,

    I’m a Malaysian working in Singapore going for a trip to South Korea in 3 weeks time. i heard some saying that we have to get an international license by paying RM150 valid for 1 year. must i have IDL to be able to drive in Jeju Island, South Korea? as my friend told me they cant rent a car to drive without IDL there? how can i check that please?

    many thanks.
    Kay Vin

    • Cikgu Yap

      If unable to get IDL, use your Malaysian driving license in South Korea. Due to economic factors, most countries accept each other’s license nowadays.

  22. Rebecca

    Hi Cikgu Yap,
    Can my husband, a British with a British driving licence with long stay visa drive in Malaysia.


    • Cikgu Yap

      Yes your hubby should have no problem driving here. Like other countries, foreign licenses can be used here for a reasonable period of time.

  23. Jenna

    I will be travel to Taiwan for 2 weeks and intend to rent a car there. Can my Malaysia driving license able to use there?

    • Cikgu Yap

      Yes, your driving license can be used there.

  24. somboi

    Hi Cikgu Yap,

    Thank you for your informative post. Hopefully you can help me with the following since I will be going to Jeju, South Korea:

    1) Other than JPJ and AAM, can I get my IDP through Driving School?
    2) My driving license is renewed at the post office (no picture). Do I have to renew my license with picture before applying for IDP?
    3) Can I apply on behalf of my husband since he’s away on business; so, I hope I can help him apply.

    Hope to hear from you soon.
    Thank you!!

    • Cikgu Yap

      Normally, IDL must be applied for personally at JPJ. Some runners and driving schools do have ways to process the above license on behalf of other people.

  25. kathy

    Mu husband is a british. HIs british driving license is already expired and using a malaysia driving license. Can he use it in new zealand?

    • Cikgu Yap

      Yes, your husband can use his Malaysian license in NZ.

  26. Quah

    I will be traveling to US and Canada for 3 weeks holiday and intend to rent a car there. Can I use my Malaysian driving licence to drive in US and Canada?

    • Cikgu Yap

      Yes, you can use your Malaysian license in US and Canada.

  27. Udaikiran

    Dear Concern,

    This is the first time I came to Malaysia and I am from India. May I no the procedure to get the international driving licence for four wheelers and should be valid for 5 years.

    Also I want to take the driving classes ,and I stay at chemor are there any institutes to give such training on driving.


  28. Wee

    I want to rent a car to tour in China, can I use Malaysia driving license ?

    • Cikgu Yap

      Be prepared to face difficulties. Chinese authorities have some restrictions towards Malaysian license.

  29. Nick

    Hi Cikgu Yap,

    I am a Dutchman holding a Malaysian P License, will I be able to get my IDL/IDP from the JPJ? I will be going to Australia soon and was wondering if I could use it there?

    Do let me know. Thanks a lot!

    • Cikgu Yap

      Dear Nick, With a local driving licence, you should be able to get IDL from the local authorities. The above is usable in Australia.


  30. Lav

    Hi, When submitting my IDP application to JPJ, will my Malaysian driving license get taken away by JPJ? I am travelling to Greece whereby as I understand I need to provide an IDP and national (Malaysian) driving license.

    Thank you.

    • Cikgu Yap

      Dear Lav, Authorities nowadays probably will not take away your Malaysian licence.

  31. Tina

    Hi Cikgu Yap,
    I am a Malaysian and just renewed my domestic license(CDL) and it only expire in 2019.
    I plan to visit and drive in Taiwan for only 3 weeks.
    If I apply for International Driving License(IDL) now for a year, do I need to surrender my CDL to JPJ?
    If yes, after one year, I need to go back to that JPJ branch that I surrender my CDL and collect it back? Do I need to pay anything to reclaim back my CDL(which only expire in 2019)?


    • Cikgu Yap

      Dear Tina, JPJ nowadays do not take back your domestic licence when you apply to IPL.

  32. Zihui

    Hi Cikgu Yap,
    I am a Malaysian and having the domestic license(CDL). I planned to visit and drive in Thailand for only 1 week. Do i need to apply for International Driving License(IDL) for renting car there?
    If yes, do I need to surrender current CDL? And how can i convert back to CDL from IDL in JPJ?

    Thanks in advance.


    • Cikgu Yap

      For short period, use your Malaysian license.

  33. Rizz

    Dear Cikgu Yap,

    I will travel to Saudi Arabia next year. Do you know whether i can used the International License there?

    Thank you

    • Cikgu Yap

      Your IDL should be usable there.

  34. Andrew tee

    Cikgu Yap,

    Last time I am working at Singapore and already convert Malaysia driving license to Singapore driving license.
    Now I am come back to Malaysia so I still can use Singapore driving license and driving in Malaysia.?


    • Cikgu Yap

      If you choose not to convert your licence back into a Malaysian one, you can drive in Malaysia. Convert back to Malaysian licence would be a better suggestion.

  35. Shekinah

    I would like to ask:
    I’m malaysian with driving liscence where I plan to drive in Japan do I need to change my driving liscence into IDL? Thanks

  36. SG Ong

    I plan to rent a car in US for tourism purposes. I’ve read your comments above and I believe Malaysian driving license can be used in US without IDL or any further documents right? My situation is a bit different.

    I am a handicapped driver. But I am still using my valid earlier Malaysian driving license (laminates series) which I obtained before I became disabled and not an OKU license. Since I became disabled, I continue to renew and use my earlier driving license which is ‘D class’.

    Do I need to change to a new driving license with the A class? (i probably guess i did)?
    Can I use this handicapped “A class” license to rent and drive a rental car in California?


    • Cikgu Yap

      Studying your circumstances, my opinion is you’re still able to use your original licence for rental purposes.

  37. Ashish Manoj


    I was wondering whether with a Malaysian PDL license it would possible to rent a vehicle in Australia? In addition I was wondering if I could apply for IDL with my PDL?


    • Cikgu Yap

      To be sure, you need to contact the car rental companies in Australia. Applying IDL with your PDL, no, it is not possible. You’ll need a CDL.

      • Ashish Manoj

        Is it possible to drive in Australia with a Malaysian PDL?


        • Cikgu Yap

          PDL not full license, so NO!

  38. mandave

    Hello Cikgu,

    I’ll be on a short holiday in europe in sep/oct 2015 and am intending to drive from zurich to amsterdam via the black forest, Germany and Luxembourg and Brussels… All in all, the drive should not take more then 4 days.
    Do I need to get an international DL or will my Malaysian DL be enough?

    Many thanks


    • Cikgu Yap

      If time permits, get IDL better.

  39. Hossain MD Sazzad

    I am a foreign Student from Bangladesh studying in quest international university perak, ipoh.. I have my license of bangladesh. I want to change that into international license. So how can i do that? and how much money is needed?
    thank you.

    • Cikgu Yap

      You have to change your license into IDL at your home country. Nonetheless, your Bangladesh license can be used here.

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