The Texas learner’s permit allows new drivers to practice driving without getting harassed by police officers. And this permit is a must for people under 18.
The learner’s permit also has restrictions. Teen drivers must have a trainer by their side whenever they’re practicing. And the person must be in the passenger’s seat.
In Texas, the trainer must have a driver’s license and be an adult at least 21 years old.
Now, these procedures are for people under 18. The question now is, does someone over 18 need a learner’s permit to practice driving in Texas?
Let’s rephrase the question and give a clear response.
Do you need a learner’s permit over 18 Texas?
No, you don’t need one. Learner’s permit in Texas is only for teenagers (under 18). Individuals between the ages of 18 to 24 have different requirements.
They have to attend a driver education program, which the Texas Department of Public Safety requires.
The driver ED course is for six hours. And if you want to obtain a driver’s license, you need to attend the Impact Texas Driving program.
Once you can meet both requirements, application for a license is a breeze. Just visit the Department of Public Safety’s office, and present the required documents.
Another reason you should take both courses (Driver Education training and Impact Texas Driving) is because it will exempt you from taking driving lessons. And that means there won’t be a need for a learner’s permit.
However, the driving lessons can be beneficial to new drivers too. You’ll gain more driving experience from it. So, if you want to improve your driving, you can create time for driving lessons.
Alright, that’s it about the age group that requires a learner’s permit. You can keep reading to learn more.
How To Get Learner’s Permit Under 18 Texas
Every teenager in the US is looking forward to the day they would own a driver’s license. It might not be such a big deal in other parts of the world. But it is to teens in the United States of America.
However, it’s not easy to get a driver’s license in Texas or other parts of the country. Applicants have to pass through several hurdles to get it.
Teens need a learner’s permit to practice driving. They need to take a written exam, pass a vision exam and have hours of driving lessons.
The DPS (Department of Public Safety) stated the requirements. So, you have to abide by them when applying for a learner’s permit.
A Handy Tip: You can start attending the driver education program at the age of 14. But that is the classroom phase. You can only apply for a learner’s permit when you turn 15.
Let’s discuss how teens can get their learner’s permit
Step#1: Attend the driver education program:
This state-approved driving program is one of the requirements to apply for a driver’s license. But if you’re applying for a learner’s permit as a teen, you have to take it.
The driver ED program is information-packed. You’ll learn several things about driving that will help you along the way. These include road signs, traffic laws, and other essential things about driving.
Additionally, the driver education program will help prepare you to scale through the written examination.
Teenagers have the liberty of choosing from four different types of driver education programs. These include:
- Attend a driver education course organized by public schools in Texas
- Attend a state-approved driving school’s traditional driver education course
- Attend a state-approved approved driver training school online driver education program
- Choose the PTDE (parent-taught driver education) program.
So, you can choose any course from the four above. Here’s Lone Star State’s official page, where you can select your preferred driver education course.
Step#2: Get all documents ready:
The DPS requires several documents to process your learner’s permit application. So, it would be best if you had the documents ready before proceeding to their office.
Here are the documents the DPS (Department of Public Safety) requires from learner’s permit applicants.
- SSN (social security number)
- Proof that you reside in Texas
- VOE (Verification of Enrollment and Attendance) form issued by any school in the state.
- Proof of your identity
- US citizenship while non-citizens have to present evidence that they are lawfully present in the country
- The state’s driver education certificate (Choose any of the four options)
- Proof of vehicle insurance
- Proof of vehicle registration
If you’re not a car owner, you may have to sign a statement confirming this claim.
Step#3: Pay the application fee:
Once you have all the documents ready, head over to the DPS office, but before leaving your house, ensure you have booked an appointment.
The DPS advises applicants to book an appointment to reduce waiting time. That doesn’t mean you can’t visit them without an appointment.
If you don’t have an appointment, try to go there on time to avoid waiting long hours. The DPS office can be so crowded most times. And as you know, the application process for each person can be time-consuming.
Once your documents are accepted, you need to thumbprint, sign, and pay an application fee of $16.
A vision exam is one of the things you also need to take when applying for a learner’s permit. And you need to pass it. Otherwise, the DPS may delay your permit a little.
But please keep this in mind. Delay is not denial. If you fail the vision test, you’ll be referred to an eye specialist for help. The eye doctor may give you a corrective lens that will help to boost your vision.
A Handy Tip: Most people might be asking questions like, “Is it possible to retake a vision test?” Yes, it is. Once the doctor has succeeded in correcting your vision, you can go back for the test.
Step#4: It’s time to take your written exam:
Most people get scared whenever the word “examination” is mentioned. And yes, there’s a reason for teens to feel a bit nervous about the written exam for a learner’s permit.
This exam isn’t meant to fail people. It is supposed to test the applicant’s knowledge of several aspects of driving. These include traffic rules and laws, signs, etc.
The DPS wants to ensure drivers are well-prepared before allowing them to drive on the road. Don’t forget that one driver’s ignorance can lead to several casualties, which the DPS is trying their possible best to avoid.
What makes this written exam difficult is the numerous things applicants need to read and comprehend. And don’t forget, people in this category are teens who are also in school.
So, if you combine school work with the learner’s permit written exam, applicants’ workload would increase.
By the way, applicants have to answer 30 questions in total and get 70 percent of them. That’s the pass mark.
A Handy Tip: How many times can you sit for the Texas written exam? It’s three times. Your application fee allows you to sit for the written exam thrice within 90 days.
If one fails after all three attempts or doesn’t pass the exam after the 90 days window, they have to pay another application fee to retake the exam.
Step#5: Take delivery of your learner’s permit:
Once you pass the written exam, you’ll have your learner’s permit handed over to you.
The DPS will give you a paper permit while you await the card permit, which may arrive in 2 to 3 weeks.
You can use the paper permit. So, there’s no point waiting for the card permit to arrive before you start learning how to drive.
And remember, the Texas learner’s permit is only valid for six months, or when you reach 18, anyone that comes first.
Step#6: Check the restrictions on the permit:
The learner’s permit isn’t the same as the driver’s license. It has a range of restrictions, which teens must follow.
You cannot drive with a learner’s permit unsupervised. The restriction is that you must be in the company of an adult. And it should be someone who’s at least 21 years old and have a driver’s license.
Another restriction also is that you cannot drive while using a wireless communication gadget.
Furthermore, you have to drive for 30 hours, adequately supervised. Without this, you won’t get a provisional driver’s license.
Do you need a learner’s permit over 18 Texas? No, you don’t. Only teens, who’re under 18, require a learner’s permit.
The permit allows teens to start their driving practice journey without being harassed by officers on duty.
Learner’s permit application is easy. The written exam is what many people find difficult. And one in about three people fails the exam. But you can hinge that on poor preparation or lack of focus on their part.