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On 19 May, the International Driving Permit (IDP) Network gathered online for the first time under Mohammed Ben Sulayem’s presidency. The 147 Member Network was updated on the Working Party 1 (WP.1) advocacy work and advancement taking place within the United Nations and was presented with key statistics from the IDP website.

IDP website, tourism

On the advocacy side, the FIA was pleased to reiterate the success of ensuring the IDP remained a standalone document for travellers intending to drive abroad.

The Tourism Services Department then turned its attention to amending the Convention(s) to support FIA Mobility Clubs in both their existing IDP issuing capacity, as well as combat unauthorised issuance seen currently on the internet. To this point, the FIA has engaged with an Informal Group of Experts on making such changes to the 1949 and 1968 Conventions. Introducing minimum qualifications to issue IDPs in combination with an explicit mandate from the Clubs’ country will allow each Club to act against unauthorised issuers. As stated in the meeting, Clubs have been able to block IP addresses of unauthorised issuers. Furthermore, efforts to continuously update the FIA/UNECE IDP Repository have been a key focus of the Department. The Repository displays authorised issuers in a formal capacity and legitimises their IDP issuance standing at the United Nations level. It must be noted that the FIA does not have the authority to introduce amendment changes on its own, it can only advocate for its interest and identify delegate support at a country level. 

The floor was then given to Dovetail Consultancy to provide data on the revamped IDP website which aims to provide a Public Information Service, challenge fake IDP sellers online, try to out rank in Search Engine, and send visitors to official issuing authorities. The statistics amplify the current trends taking place for IDP searches on the internet. The market for IDPs is returning to normalcy and even showing an increase in inquiries. The website provides crucial information to end-users on where to go for an IDP. It is a mechanism of assistance that drives individuals to Club websites for the purchase of an IDP. Among the key figures, Dovetail Consultancy highlighted that:

  • 82% of visitors are going to a country page and that 237,000 visitors viewed country page information.
  • visitors are spending 59 seconds per visit on average.
  • 66% of visitors are using their mobile while 34% use their desktop.
  • 60% of visitors are men.
  • the top 10 countries are USA, UK, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Jordan, Peru, United Arab Emirates, Canada, South Africa and Germany.

Following this presentation, FIA Member Clubs were asked to go to the IDP website and check that their Country page information is correct and up to date. Another advice given to them was to backlink the IDP website to their own Club website in order to drive both websites up the search results.

The Tourism Services Department will continue working on the amplification of IDPs. The FIA will be sending out press releases and social media content highlighting IDPs. Furthermore, an IDP handbook will soon be under development.

The next WP.1 session will be held on 19-23 September and an IDP Network meeting will directly follow.