How to Apply for a New Motorcycle License in Georgia
A Georgia motorcycle license is required before you can operate a vehicle with two or three wheels that has an engine capacity of more than 50cc. However, a motorbike license is not needed for all types of two-wheeled vehicles. Motorbikes, scooters and mopeds with an engine size smaller than 50cc do not count as motorcycles and, therefore, do not require a special license to operate.
Drivers who want to obtain a motorbike license can do so in one of two ways. The first method involves passing a knowledge test, road skills test and vision exam at the Department of Driver Services (DDS). The second way to get a license includes taking a motorcycle safety course to receive a waiver of the DDS tests. With either of these options, a driver may choose to get an instruction permit in order to practice driving a motorcycle, but permits are not mandatory for any age group. Below, learn more about getting a motorcycle license in Georgia and find out which tests, fees and classes may be required.
Requirements for Motorcycle Permit Credentials in Georgia
A GA motorcycle permit, or Class MP permit, allows you to practice riding your motorcycle before applying for a license to operate a motorcycle at the DDS. A permit is not required, but it may be beneficial to obtain if you wish to start riding sooner. The minimum motorcycle permit age is 16 years of age, whereas the minimum age for getting a license is 17 years of age.
In order to get a permit, you must pass a 30-hour DDS driver training class, a motorcycle written test and a vision exam. If you are younger than 17 years of age, then you will also need to complete a behind-the-wheel driving program, and if you are younger than 18 years of age, then you must have your parent, guardian or driver training instructor sign your application for a license when you are ready to apply.
When applying for motorcycle permits, you must provide documentation that shows your identity, full Social Security Number, your residential address in Georgia and proof of your citizenship or legal presence in the U.S. If you hold an out-of-state learner’s permit or driver’s license, then you must surrender it to the DDS.
Additional documentation is required if you are younger than 18 years of age when you apply. You will need to submit:
- A certificate of school enrollment or verification that you have completed high school or a GED.
- An Alcohol and Drug Awareness (ADAP) program completion certificate.
- If you used a Parent-Teen Driving Guide to complete your driving practice, then you must submit a driving log, driving agreement and other materials you completed in the guide.
Georgia Motorcycle Permit Restrictions
Motorbike permits come with certain restrictions in order to keep you safer while practicing your riding skills. No matter your age when you get a permit, you are not allowed to do the following:
- Drive before sunrise or after sunset
- Carry any passengers
- Drive on roadways with limited access (such as certain freeways)
- Ride without the appropriate safety equipment required under Georgia motorcycle safety law
How to Get a Motorcycle Permit in Georgia
To obtain your motorcycle instruction permit, you must visit one of the DDS licensing center locations and pass both a vision test and knowledge test pertaining to driving a motorcycle. Be prepared to pay a licensing fee and present proof of your identity, Social Security Number, residential address and legal presence in the U.S. You will be issued a Class MP motorbike permit after you successfully complete these steps.
Georgia Motorcycle License Requirements
To obtain a Class M license in Georgia, you can either complete tests through the DDS or take an approved riding safety class. If you choose to get a license by taking exams at the DDS, then you will need to pass a knowledge exam, vision test and a riding skills exam. By completing motorcycle training instead, you will only need to pass a vision test at the DDS and present your certificate of class completion.
The minimum motorcycle license age is 17 years of age regardless of which method you choose for getting your credentials. You will also need to pay licensing fees anytime you are issued a new credential at the DDS.
When applying for a Class M motorcycle license, you will usually need to provide a variety of documentation. However, if you are applying for a motorcycle endorsement and you already hold a regular Georgia driver’s license with a Secure ID star in the righthand corner and you are a U.S. citizen, then you usually do not need to bring these documents to the DDS.
When applying for an identification card or any driver’s license, you need an identity document such as an original or certified birth certificate, U.S. passport or certificate of citizenship or naturalization. Second, you must prove your Social Security Number by providing one document that shows your full number, such as a Social Security card, paystub, tax form or other paperwork. Third, you must verify your residency by showing two documents that include your Georgia address, such as a bill or bank statement.
How to Get a Motorcycle License in Georgia
The steps for getting a motorbike license in Georgia vary slightly depending on whether you plan on completing a safety course to waive your tests. When asking, “How long does it take to get a motorcycle license?” keep in mind that it varies based on which of the two methods you choose to complete. If you want to take all of the required examinations at the DDS, then you will need to pass a knowledge test, road skills test and vision exam. On the other hand, if you wish to take a safety class instead of passing exams at the DDS, then you must enroll in an approved course and bring your certificate of completion when you are ready to apply for your credentials.
You will be issued a Class M motorbike license upon successfully meeting these requirements. If you already hold a different class of driver’s license, then you must surrender your old credentials to the DDS. A new card will be issued, indicating that you are eligible to drive motorcycles in addition to any other class of vehicle that you were originally licensed to drive. Refunds are not issued when you turn in your old license and you will still need to pay a fee to receive your new credentials.
Getting a Georgia Class M License as a New Resident
When moving to Georgia from a different state, you must transfer your driving credentials within 30 days of establishing residency. If your out-of-state motorbike license is valid or has been expired for less than two years, then you can simply surrender it to the DDS, take a vision test and skip the road test and written test. If you are transferring a motorcycle license in Georgia that has been expired for more than two years, then you will need to take a vision test, written exam and road skills test.
Regardless of whether your out-of-state motorcycle driver’s license is valid or expired, you must provide documentation showing your identity, Social Security Number, legal presence in the U.S. and residential address.
Required Motorcycle Classes in Georgia
Taking a motorcycle class is optional but the DDS highly recommends it for all riders. Not only does the motorcycle safety course make motorcyclists safer and more knowledgeable, but it also allows them to skip the written test and skills exam at the DDS.
Classes offered through the Georgia Motorcycle Safety Program will satisfy the DDS requirements if you wish to get a waiver for your tests. Registration for the basic rider course (BRC) costs $250 and is nonrefundable. Once you sign up for a class, you will be registered for a specific class and must attend all of the sessions in order to pass.
Motorcycle safety courses cover classroom lessons as well as riding practice that will help make you a safer and more confident motorcyclist. Upon successfully passing the class, you will receive a waiver that is valid for 90 days. When you visit the DDS, you must present this certificate in order to bypass the knowledge and skills tests.
Note: If you are younger than 17 years of age when you take a safety course, then make sure your 17th birthday occurs before the 90-day test waiver expires. You cannot get a license before turning 17 years of age and cannot skip the knowledge and skills tests if you take the class so far in advance that your certificate expires before you visit the DDS.
Georgia DMV Motorcycle Test Details
When applying for motorcycle licenses, all drivers should be prepared to take a vision test, which requires at least 20/60 vision and a visual field of at least 140 degrees in one eye with or without corrective lenses. Applicants who did not take a motorcycle safety class will need to pass a knowledge exam and road skills test as described below.
Military members and their dependents may waive the testing requirements if they have completed an approved safety course. In such cases, a Motorcycle Safety Program Military Waiver Application will be required when applying at the DDS.
Written Motorcycle Test
The motorcycle knowledge test consists of a road rules test and a road signs test, each of which contains 20 questions. Applicants must get a minimum score of 15 out of 20 on both tests. The information is based on the contents of the GA motorcycle handbook.
Motorcycle Road Test
The rider skills test (RST) includes four different exercises that are used to evaluate your ability to ride safely and control your motorcycle. Make sure you bring a helmet approved by the Department of Transportation (DOT) as well as protective glasses or goggles for your exam.
Do you need a motorcycle license to drive a scooter in Georgia?
You do not need a Class M motorcycle license in Georgia to operate scooters and mopeds that have an engine size of 50cc or less. These vehicles are not categorized as motorcycles and can, therefore, be driven with a regular driver’s license, permit or limited permit.
Georgia Motorcycle License Cost
You will need to pay various motorcycle license fees when applying for your credentials at the DDS. A regular driver’s license, which includes Class M credentials, costs $32 and is valid for a period of eight years. A Class MP learner’s permit costs $10 and is valid for six months.