How to Apply for a New Motorcycle License in Arizona
An Arizona motorcycle license is required for anyone who wishes to operate a motorbike in the state. The type of motorbike license you obtain from the Motor Vehicles Department (MVD) will dictate which types of bikes you are allowed to ride and what rules you have to follow. There are several classes of licenses and permits that will allow you to practice riding or have full riding permissions in the state.
First, a motorcycle permit may be necessary if you want to get your first credentials when you are younger than 18 years of age. Second, a graduated motorbike license, also known as a class G license, will be granted if you are still younger than 18 years of age when you fulfill the requirements of your permit. Third, you can obtain a class M license once you have passed the necessary tests and met the age requirements. Alternatively, endorsements can be added to a regular driver’s license if you wish to operate motorcycles in addition to passenger vehicles. Below, learn everything you need to know about getting each of these credentials.
What is an Arizona motorcycle endorsement?
Motorcycle endorsements are special designations that can be added to a regular Class D operator’s license, a Class G graduated license or even a commercial driver’s license if you want to drive a motorcycle in addition to a passenger or commercial vehicle. Instead of being issued a separate motorcycle license to drive a motorcycle, your regular credentials will simply indicate an “M” on the back that shows you are allowed to drive both types of vehicles. On the other hand, you can also get a license that only allows you to drive a motorcycle if you do not plan on operating other vehicles.
Motorcycle Permit Requirements in Arizona
An AZ motorcycle permit is the first step in getting your license if you are younger than 18 years of age when you first apply. The minimum motorcycle permit age is 15 years and six months of age. In order to obtain a permit, you will need to pass a written test relating to motorcycle safety and operation as well.
When going to the MVD for a motorcycle license, you must present documents showing your identity, legal presence in the U.S. and your age. You are required to show one “primary” document such as an enhanced driver’s license, certified birth certificate, U.S. passport, Arizona ID card, permanent resident or resident alien card, certificate of naturalization or citizenship, military ID or other similar documentation.
During the DMV motorcycle application process, a “secondary” document must be shown as well. Examples of secondary documents include non-enhanced driver’s licenses, Social Security cards, W-2 forms, professional licenses or school IDs, among other credentials.
Arizona Motorcycle Permit Rules and Restrictions
“What does a motorcycle permit allow you to do?” many drivers wonder once they get their credentials. Motorcycle permits do not come with all of the same privileges as a license, as they are meant to allow riders time to practice their skills. Motorcyclists with a permit cannot:
- Ride before sunrise or after sunset.
- Operate on freeways or interstates.
- Use their bike during any other time when it is too dark to see a distance of at least 500 feet.
How to Get a Motorcycle Permit in Arizona
When getting a motorcycle license permit as a first-time driver, you should be prepared to take a test for passenger vehicles and motorcycles if you have not already obtained a regular driver’s license permit. If you already have a regular permit, though, then you will only have to take a test pertaining to motorcycling.
The AZ MVD uses a single online application for motorbike permits, licenses and other credentials. You may choose to fill this form out before heading to the MVD in order to save time. Make sure you bring the appropriate documentation showing your identity, legal presence and age and be prepared to pay a fee for your permit.
Arizona Motorcycle License Requirements
The minimum motorcycle license age in Arizona is 16 years of age. If you apply for a license when you are younger than 18 years of age, then keep in mind that you must first hold a motorbike permit for six months and your credential must be valid at the time you apply for your license. In addition to meeting the minimum age to get motorcycle license credentials, you also need to complete a rider training program or have your parents verify that you have practiced riding for at least 30 hours. These requirements do not apply if you are older than 18 years of age when you apply for a license.
Anytime you apply for a bike license from the MVD, you will need to show documentation verifying your age, identity and legal presence in the U.S. Just like getting a motorcycle learners permit, you can meet this requirement by providing one primary document such as a birth certificate, enhanced driver’s license or U.S. passport and one secondary document such as a Social Security card, non-enhanced driver’s license or school ID. The Arizona MVD provides a complete list of acceptable documents that you can refer to.
How to Get a Motorcycle License in Arizona
The first step in getting your motorbike license in AZ is to submit the Driver License/Identification Card Application on the MVD website. This form is used for all types of license applications, so be sure to select the correct option when submitting it. Next, you may need to take a skills test if you have not completed the necessary driving practice or received a certificate from an approved education program.
When asking where to get motorcycle license credentials, note that you must go to one of the MVD office locations or approved third-party location to complete your application. Upon successfully getting your license, you will receive either an updated driver’s license with an M endorsement or a separate license that can only be used for operating a motorcycle.
Getting an Arizona Motorcycle License as a New Resident
If you are new to Arizona and hold an out-of-state motorbike license, then you will more than likely be exempt from the testing and driver’s education requirements as long as you are at least 16 years of age. The AZ MVD will generally accept your bike license as proof of successfully completing all of the requirements, but note that the MVD may administer tests at its discretion when you apply for a new license.
Required Motorcycle Classes in Arizona
You can always choose to take a motorcycle class in order to improve your skills and become a better rider. However, the MVD requires that you take a class approved by the Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) or complete 30 hours of riding practice if you are younger than 18 years of age when applying for your license. Successfully completing a motorcycle safety course will allow you to receive a card or certificate, which can be presented to the MVD to verify that you have met the training requirements.
There are more than 30 places where you can take a motorcycle training course in Arizona, including at least one location in the counties of Cochise, Maricopa, Mohave, Pima, Pinal, Yavapai and Yuma. If you are younger than 18 years of age and do not want to complete a class, then you must have your parents or guardians verify in writing that you have completed the necessary training instead.
Arizona DMV Motorcycle Test Details
The type of motorcycle test you need to take will vary depending on your age, riding experience and the type of license or permit you are obtaining. At the very least, you should be prepared to pass a vision screening, which requires visual acuity of 20/40 or better in at least one eye. If your vision does not meet this standard without using corrective lenses, then you will receive a restriction on your license.
In addition to the vision test, you may need to take a written exam or motorcycle driving test as described below.
Motorcycle Written Test
The written motorcycle test in AZ is required for applicants who are younger than 18 years of age and wish to get a permit. First-time drivers who do not already hold a regular permit will need to take a motorcycle permit test as well as a general knowledge test. Test-takers must pay an application fee, which will provide three attempts within a 12-month period.
While DMV motorcycle tests are required for first-time applicants, you should also be prepared to take one if you are renewing your motorcycle license. The MVD can require a knowledge test any time you renew or change your license.
Motorcycle Road Test
A DMV motorcycle driving test will be required if you are applying for a license and do not have an MSF course completion certificate. The motorcycle driving test takes 10 to 15 minutes to complete and includes a demonstration of your skills in a closed, off-street track.
There are several locations that offer motorcycle driving tests in Arizona, but note that not all MVD or authorized third-party offices will provide this type of testing. Note that all exams require scheduling an appointment ahead of time.
Do you need a motorcycle license to drive a scooter in Arizona?
Motorcycle licenses or endorsements are required to operate any motorbike or motor-driven cycle. With that in mind, you will need to apply for an endorsement on your Class D license if you wish to operate a motor scooter or other similar vehicles. Remember, motorcycle endorsements come with the same requirements as licenses, so you must complete the same testing and application steps described above as necessary.
If you take a motorcycle driving test with a motor scooter that has an engine capacity of 100cc or less, your license or endorsement will contain a “J” restriction indicating that you are only allowed to operate bikes with a 100cc engine or smaller. To get this restriction removed, you will need to retake the skills test on a motorcycle with a larger engine.
Arizona Motorcycle License Cost
How much does it cost to get a motorcycle license? You should be prepared to pay Arizona motorcycle license fees each time you get a new credential or need to update an existing one. Note that the fees for licenses vary based on your age and the class of license you are obtaining, but an instruction permit or motorbike endorsement will cost $7 regardless of your age.
Regular licenses will cost the following amount based on your age:
- 16 to 39 years of age – $25.
- 40 to 44 years of age – $20.
- 45 to 59 years of age – $15.
- 50 years of age or older – $10.