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  1. #11
    copake_ham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Zentena View Post
    Why would you need an AAA issued IDP in the USA? You'd need one issued by a non USA body. So if you're saying the AAA issued IDP isn't valid in the USA that makes perfect sense.

    If you're making plane changes check the baggage limits for each leg. Some of those discount European airlines have baggage limits smaller then a lens cap. Even BA last month severely limited baggage. :rolleyes:

    Instead of paying for overweight why not buy film there? Or even some clothing?
    I am a member (goodness knows why) of AAA.

    I guess it was before we owned cars that came with their own Roadside Assistance Plans.

    I have travelled extensively in Europe, Australia, Canada and Mexico and just needed my good old New York State Driver's License to rent a car!

    Why would anyone get a AAA IDP?

  2. #12

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    An IDP is a translation of your drivers license. If you get pulled over with out you'll get a ticket or worse. Or maybe the officer will just give you the dumb tourist warning.

    http://www.caa.ca/english/travel/documentation/idp.html

    If the AAA is like the CAA you don't need to be a member to get the IDP.

  3. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by copake_ham View Post
    I am a member (goodness knows why) of AAA.

    I guess it was before we owned cars that came with their own Roadside Assistance Plans.

    I have travelled extensively in Europe, Australia, Canada and Mexico and just needed my good old New York State Driver's License to rent a car!

    Why would anyone get a AAA IDP?
    Hmm...I got one in the event that I am involved in an accident...seems like it would possibly indicate to the local cops that I am trying to abide by the laws in force.

    As I understand this matter, it seems that AAA is not the body that issues the IDP of it's own accord. It is one of two agencies that is authorized by the US Government to issue the IDP in it's (the US Government's) behalf.

    The IDP is not good for inter American (US, Central, and South American) travel. There is another license for that purpose.
    Art is a step from what is obvious and well-known toward what is arcane and concealed.

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  4. #14
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    I've driven in probably over 20 countries. Never got an IDP from AAA or CAA - ever.

    Regards, Art.
    Visit my website at www.ArtLiem.com
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  5. #15
    Ed Sukach's Avatar
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    The last time I drove in Europe (Baden-Baden, Germany) I backed the rented Opel Vectra into a post (something of a barrier column), with the height a centimeter or so below the area visible though the rear window. When I reported the accident to the police, I was asked for my passport and driver's license. I gave them both my Massachusetts license and my International Driving Permit. They really focused on the IDP - far more familiar to them than the (peculiar) State license.
    I'm sure that the Mass. License would have been honored, eventually, but it was well worth it to have the IDP, in terms of avoiding confusion at a stressful time.

    BTW ... I have a high regard for the Baden-Baden Police; Courteous, efficient (the reporting process took ~ five minutes) and they did everything to put me at ease. They could serve as role models for the police over here - with one exception - my son-in-law, a Detective, now, for a local Police Department (in case he reads this).

    Check-in at the Rental Office was also simplified - they are very familiar with IDPs.

    Additionally, the IDP (Complete with recent photograph) serves as an additional form of identification.
    Carpe erratum!!

    Ed Sukach, FFP.

  6. #16
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    I hear what some are saying but I think the IDP is a "vestigial artifact" from an earlier era when it was somewhat unusual for a foreign tourist to rent a car.

    After all, it is the car rental company that is most concerned with whether you have a valid driver's license. If they are willing to accept your State-issued license and assume the liability of providing you with a vehicle - what's the point of an IDP?

    Maybe I'm just a risk taker, but it seems to me that getting an IDP when you have a valid driver's license is like getting a belt to wear with your suspenders (er...braces to the Brits)!

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ed Sukach View Post
    3. Again it is ADVISED (in light of #2, above), that ALL valuables be carried on board.
    Here is the problem: How you you carry a Super Trekker or a Peli #1650 with a valuable camera on board?

    I used to check my Super Trekker, but I ended up with a bent Gitzo Studex tripod...

    The baggage insurance by the airlines is not sufficient for a professional photo equipment.
    If you're not taking your camera...there's no reason to travel. --APUG member bgilwee

  8. #18
    Ed Sukach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by copake_ham View Post
    After all, it is the car rental company that is most concerned with whether you have a valid driver's license. If they are willing to accept your State-issued license and assume the liability of providing you with a vehicle - what's the point of an IDP?
    I never said it was a necessity. To me, anything that relieves stress and smooths the way, especially when one is hampered by a lack of fluency in another language, is worth it ... WELL worth it.

    If you would rather CAUSE stress to another, not to mention struggling yourself ... by all means forget the IDP.

    As for me -- I'll use - and recommend - the IDP to all who ask.
    Carpe erratum!!

    Ed Sukach, FFP.

  9. #19

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    If you're in a non-English speaking country trying to hand an English license to a police officer might not getting you to far.

    The car rental company only cares about getting it's money. It could care less if you end up in jail -)

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Zentena View Post
    If you're in a non-English speaking country trying to hand an English license to a police officer might not getting you to far.
    As far as I know, the laws in most countries permit driving with a valid driving license from any other country.
    If you're not taking your camera...there's no reason to travel. --APUG member bgilwee

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