How to Get a Drivers License in California
Gearing up to get your California driver’s license? Congratulations! It’s finally time to get ready for that moment you’ve been waiting for, and we want to make it easy for you. That’s why we’ve provided a guide to getting your driver’s license that teaches you everything you need to know about what it takes to be a license holder in the Golden State.
California Drivers License Eligibility
There are several requirements you must meet in order to earn your driver’s license in California, and these conditions vary by age. The basic steps are:
- Take a California drivers education course
- Have your provisional learner’s permit for at least 6 months (though be careful not to let it expire!)
- Fulfill 6 hours of driver’s training (this is behind-the-wheel training with an instructor)
- Log 50 hours of driving practice (10 of those hours occurring at night) with an adult that is at least 25 years of age
- Take a road test
How many of these California drivers license requirements you need to complete depends on how old you are. If you are:
- Between the ages of 15 1/2 and 17 1/2: Complete all of the above steps
- Over age 17 1/2 but below 18: You will only need to apply for a provisional permit and apply for a driver’s license
- 18 or above: Apply for a driver’s license
To help you understand California drivers education and the requirements you’ll need to fulfill, we have a handy downloadable PDF. This checklist will help you stay on track and earn your driver’s permit and license in no time.
Get On Your Way with I Drive Safely’s Drivers Ed Course!
We understand how busy you are, and that’s why we created our 100% online California Drivers Ed course! It gives you the flexibility you need to start working toward that license without having to move your schedule around. You also get to:
- Study from home, or anywhere there’s an Internet-connected computer!
- Study in short bursts or cover a lot of ground at once
- Read brief, easy-to-understand chapters
- Use animations, slideshows, and more to aid in your learning experience
- Take helpful multiple-choice quizzes for review
- You only need an 80% to pass the final exam!
How to Apply for Your Drivers License
After completing the California driver’s license requirements, teens who are at least 16 years old can apply for a provisional license. A parent or guardian needs to sign a form (see our Forms You’ll Need page) verifying that the teen driver has fulfilled the necessary hours. They will also need to sign their teen’s application form when they bring their son or daughter to the DMV. At the DMV, the teen can take their behind-the-wheel driving test in order to receive their teenage driver’s license in California!
Benefits of Getting a Drivers License in California
As a California resident, you’re likely well-aware of the fact that a car is pretty much necessary in this state. But fortunately, there are advantages to being able to drive here, including:
- The freedom to go wherever you want, whenever you want (although, if your license is provisional, you’ll need to adhere to driving curfews)
- Get where you want to on YOUR schedule, not anyone else’s; no waiting for public transportation!
- It’s the most common form of identification; when asked to prove your identity, typically you will be asked for your driver’s license
- It’s a milestone! Most teens view getting their driver’s license as their first step toward adulthood
So what are you waiting for? Get signed up for a driver’s education course and get on the path to your California drivers license! And if you have any questions at all, feel free to check out our FAQs page.