Turning 16 is a special age. Some might call it sweet and for good reason. In Massachusetts, 16 year olds can start the process of getting a driver’s license. This first time driver’s guide to getting licensed will help you reach this important milestone. Here are the basic steps.
Step 1 – Study
To get a learner’s permit, you’ll need to know Massachusetts driving laws. Download the driver’s manual and start studying! You’ll need to remember a wide range of topics including:
- Requirements for Obtaining and Renewing Licenses
- Penalties and Reasons for License Suspension or Revocation
- Vehicle and Driving Safety
- Road Rules for Driving, Parking, Interpreting Road Signs, etc.
- Vehicle Ownership and Registration
Step 2 – Get a Permit
Once you’re ready, apply for a learner’s permit. Fill out an online application, pay the $30 fee, and schedule a time to take the test. Testing is traditionally performed in-person, but due to COVID, it’s now also available online. You’ll need permission from a parent or guardian and must also provide sufficient ID. It’s a multiple choice test that must be complete within 25 minutes. 18 correct answers are required to pass and you’ll know results immediately.
Step 3 – Learn & Practice
Once you have your permit, the fun really begins. You can start actually driving on the roads. Just make sure you follow the rules about having a licensed driver over the age of 18 with you at all times. Additionally, there are restrictions on driving at night. Breaking a law while driving with your permit can delay getting your license, so be sure to know what you can and cannot do.
Driver’s Education Courses are available from many companies throughout the state. Taking a course and following applicable laws will allow you to get licensed before turning 18. Otherwise, you’ll need to practice and drive with a permit until then.
Step 4 – Take the Road Test
Once you meet the requirements for testing, you can schedule your road test and pay the $35 fee. A sponsor must accompany you to the test and give you permission to drive their vehicle. Be sure to bring your learner’s permit. The person performing the test will tell you where to go and what to do. Keep in mind that there’s no practice or dry run. If you fail the test, you must wait 2 weeks to reschedule. Use this time to study driving rules and practice!
Step 5 – Drive Safely
Once you pass your test, that’s it! You’ll be able to get an official license from the Registry of Motor Vehicles. Remember to drive responsibly. Insurance rates are notoriously expensive for first time drivers, as you’re more likely to make mistakes and get into accidents. By being conscientious, you’ll build a clean driving record and earn lower insurance premiums over time.
Summary of First Time Driver’s Guide to Getting Licensed
We hope this first time driver’s guide to getting licensed is useful to you as you reach this important milestone in your life. Although the process can be stressful, it’s also exciting and a lot of fun. The rules and procedures for getting licensed are important preparation for the rules of the road. Enjoy the experience and drive safely!