Driving in Florida


Tips for visitors who are planning to drive on their Florida vacation.

  • Of course, remember to drive on the right side of the road.
  • Legal speed limits are posted on the right side of the road.
  • You may turn right at a red light after coming to a complete stop, unless a sign indicating “no right on red” is posted at the intersection.
  • Headlights must be on from dusk to dawn, as well as in fog or rain. Turn off windscreen wipers when stopping at toll booths.
  • When law enforcement vehicles are in one of the “break-down” lanes, either assisting a motorist or pulling over a speeding vehicle, you must move to the far lane, away from the police or slow to 20 miles per hour below the speed limit.
  • Law requires wearing your seat belt. In addition, children under age 4 or less than 40 pounds (15 kg) must be in a child car seat, usually available from your car hire company.
  • Driving while drinking alcohol or while under the influence of alcohol is illegal. Appoint a “designated driver” in your group who will drink only non-alcoholic beverages and drive home safely.
  • Drivers may dial *FHP on Florida interstates and highways in an emergency to reach the Florida Highway Patrol (state police).
  • Some interstate highways have tolls – for example, the Florida Turnpike (Ocala to Homestead), Alligator Alley (1-75 between Miami and Naples) and the Bee Line Expressway (Orlando to Cape Canaveral). Many coastal islands have bridges, at which a fare is also charged.
  • Motorists who travel Florida’s Turnpike in Miami-Dade county will pay tolls via an all-electronic collection system. Officials caution motorists that under no circumstances should they attempt to stop in high-speed electronic tolling lanes. For more information about the toll road changes, click here.
  • You only need your documentation of identification, such as your driver's license from your native country, to drive in Florida. You do not need an international driving permit. For more information, visit http://www.flhsmv.gov/FLVisitorsFAQs.htm

Car rental

To rent a car you must have your driving license, passport and a credit card. The minimum age for car hire is 21, but some agencies will charge more for drivers under 25 years of age. Major companies will allow you to pick up a car in one location and drop it off in another (for an extra charge). Most major companies also have programs allowing customers to utilize the TOLL-BY-PLATE electronic collection system wherein tolls, plus varying service fees, are automatically charged to the credit card used to rent the vehicle. For details, including pricing options at participating car agencies, visit www.sunpass.com/rentalcar. You can generally make reservations before you leave your country, either by phone or online.

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Eva Radermacher
Eva Radermacher February 24, 2015 5:28 AM
Is it still necessary to have an international driver´s license when driving in Florida? I am a German citizen with a German driver´s license. The information at the website of Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles is dated from the year 2008.
Thank you for your answer.
Hi good afternoon;
1) To drive in florida (Miami and Orlando) is mandatory to have the international driving permit (IDP) or just take the driver's license of the driver of the country, within the validity period along with a valid passport??
2) I'm wondering if it is mandatory to have the international driving permit (IDP) because I read some articles saying they created a law mandating the use of PID. But I've been told that this law is no longer valid. Is it true?
From already thank you very much!!
We will be travelling to Orlando in November with this year with my mother-in-law who has a disabled badge in the UK. Can you tell me if this is valid in Orlando? Many thanks.
Answer: Hi Sue,
Thanks for reaching out.
Disabled Parking Permits: Florida honors any special license plate or parking permit issued to a disabled person by other states or districts, or by a foreign country that issues disabled parking permits that display the international symbol of accessibility.
If your current permit doesn’t display one of the international symbols of accessibility, you’ll need to obtain a temporary parking permit at any Florida County Tax Collector's Office . To get one, you’ll need a copy of your current parking permit and proof of ID like a valid passport or comparable identification to verify your ownership of the out-of-country/state parking permit. The temporary parking permit may be issued up to six months and costs $15.
So the bottom line is, she’s good! Just bring the permit.
Sunny Regards,
Lauren Tjaden for VISIT FLORIDA