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Applying for a Pennsylvania New Driver’s License

Drivers in Pennsylvania are required to apply for drivers license in order to legally operate a motor vehicle on the public roads and highways within the state. Before beginning with the drivers license application process, you need to get a copy of the Pennsylvania Driver's Manual and go through a physical examination. You will also need to fulfill several other requirements set by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.

Did you know? As part of the process for obtaining a DMV drivers license, driving applicants are required to pass a knowledge test. More than 60 percent of new drivers fail the knowledge exam on their first try. Avoid being one of them by preparing with our practice driving tests.

How to Apply for a Pennsylvania Driver's License:

  • Visit a PA DOT location.
  • Provide the required documentation.
  • Pass the eye screening.
  • Pass a knowledge test.
  • Take and pass a road test.
  • Have your photo taken.
  • Pay the PA drivers license fees.

Learn the process for getting drivers licenses in Pennsylvania by reviewing the sections below.

Types of Drivers Licenses in Pennsylvania

Drivers need to complete a drivers license application to operate motor vehicles in Pennsylvania. They may apply for different types of PA driving licenses, including the following:

  • Class A - issued to drivers who operate vehicle combinations with a weight of 26,001 pounds or more (GVWR).
  • Class B - issued to drivers who operate a single vehicle with a weight of 26,001 pounds or more (GVWR).
  • Class C - issued to drivers who operate a motor vehicle that does not belong to Class A or B.
  • Class M - issued to drivers who operate a motorcycle.

First-Time Driver (Under 18) in Pennsylvania

Driving applicants must apply for drivers license credentials to legally operate a motor vehicle on public roads in Pennsylvania. However, in order to get drivers licenses in the state, you must first meet specific requirements and obey certain restrictions set by the PA Department of Transportation (PennDOT).

For more information, visit our Learner's Permit page.

Pennsylvania New Drivers (Over 18)

PA Driver's Study Guide and Driver's Practice Test

Pennsylvania DMV drivers license applicants are required to pass a knowledge test as part of the application process. To prepare for the license to drive test, study the Pennsylvania Driver's Manual and gauge your knowledge by using our online practice driving tests. The practice tests contain similar questions to those on the official knowledge test.

How to Apply for Drivers Licenses in PA

Visit the nearest Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (DOT) office in order to begin the drivers license application process. When visiting in person, you will need to provide the following documentation:

  • A completed Non-Commercial Learners Permit Application.
  • Your Proof of identity.
  • Two proofs of Pennsylvania residency.
  • Your Social Security card.
  • Payment for the applicable fee.

PA Drivers License Eligibility Requirements

Driving applicants, who want to apply for a Pennsylvania drivers license, need to meet a certain age requirement. You can obtain a learners permit starting at 16, as the first step in getting a license to drive. If you would like to apply for a Class C drivers license, you will need to meet the following requirements:

  • Be at least 18 years of age.
  • Have a PA learners permit.
  • Pass a driving test.

PA Written/Driving Test

In order to operate a motor vehicle in Pennsylvania, you will need to pass a written knowledge test. The knowledge test contains questions about road rules, regulations and traffic signs. The PA DOT conducts the test as part of the learners permit application process. Take one of our practice driving tests to get prepared for the official PA DOT knowledge test. The practice test contains questions similar to those that you will answer on the actual exam day.

PA Driving Test

Driving applicants in Pennsylvania may schedule the driving test either online or by phone. This particular test examines the driver's ability to understand and obey traffic signs, as well as to follow traffic laws and regulations while operating a motor vehicle. The Pennsylvania driving test will examine you on maneuvers that include the following:

  • Ability to use vehicle controls, such as lights, horn, parking brake, windshield wipers and more.
  • Ability to obey warning signs, stop signs and traffic lights.
  • Knowing how to parallel park.

During the Pennsylvania driving test, you will not be allowed to drive with other passengers aside from your examiner. Note that the vehicle you use for the driving test must be registered and insured. Additionally, it must have a valid state inspection sticker and a valid emissions sticker.

New Pennsylvania Resident

New Pennsylvania residents can apply for drivers license at any near PA DOT office within 60 days of the establishing residency. In the application process, the driving applicant will need to surrender any existing out-of-state drivers license. However, if the out-of-state has been expired for more than six months, then you will have to apply for learners permit first.

In addition to getting drivers licenses, drivers must conduct a title transfer and register their vehicle in Pennsylvania within 20 days of their move. In order to title and register your motor vehicle in PA, you must first conduct a VIN inspection. Your VIN number must be verified when you are moving to the state.

Replace Drivers License in Pennsylvania

In the misfortune of a lost or stolen drivers license in PA, apply for drivers license replacements at the nearest DOT office. You also have the option to complete this process online or by mail. Driving applicants must complete a Non-Commercial Driver's License Application to Change/Correct/Replace and pay the applicable fee. For more information on how to get a duplicate drivers license, click here.

Locate a DMV in Pennsylvania

Find the nearest DMV office to you by searching through our PA DOT locations page. Easily obtain contact details you need, such as phone numbers and office hours directly on our site.

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