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What to Know Before You Drive Abroad on Your Next International Vacation

When traveling out of the country from the beautiful city of Santa Monica—one of the many beach cities that is part of the Los Angeles metropolitan area in Southern California—consider whether you plan on driving while abroad on this international vacation. If so, there are a number of things to consider so that you have the correct permits and insurance to guarantee you are properly covered and don’t end up in a confusing and possibly uncomfortable situation with foreign drivers and local authorities in the event of an accident.

First, make sure you can legally drive abroad in the first place with just your American driver’s license. Different countries have different rules so it all depends on where you are traveling. Some require you to obtain an International Driving Permit, or IDP, which can be purchased for a small fee from the National Auto Club or AAA. This basically translates your driver’s license into a number of different languages and will work in most countries. You must be 18 to obtain an IDP, but driving ages vary from country to country anyway.

As far as auto insurance goes, international coverage is often tough to obtain. There are a few exceptions, of course. Most insurance companies will cover travelers who are headed to neighboring countries to the United States, namely Canada or Mexico. However, if you are traveling across an ocean to Europe, South America, Asia or anywhere else, you will need to obtain auto coverage from an independent company that specializes in insuring those who drive abroad, like Express Financial & insurance Services, who serves Santa Monica, California.

As insurance covers you against the unpredictable, it is often integral to international travel, especially when traveling in countries where drivers, local traffic laws and roads are exactly that. Which is exactly why you should definitely purchase auto insurance if you plan on driving abroad on your next international adventure.