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Young drivers who lack experience behind the wheel may drive more irresponsibly and are at greater risk of being involved in accidents. Fortunately, there are graduated driver licensing (GDL) programs in place designed to properly train young drivers and help them attain good driving habits.

It’s smart to understand graduated driver’s license rules, GDL laws, and GDL restrictions, especially if you or a teenage loved one is preparing to drive soon for the first time.

Key Takeaways

  • State GDL laws put restrictions on licenses of inexperienced drivers and then allow them more freedom as they gain experience with age.
  • Young drivers are required to have a learner’s permit and hold it for an appropriate amount of time before applying for their licenses.
  • Drivers in an intermediate stage can get their state driver’s license, but you need to do more work before gaining the same rights as a more experienced driver.
  • After gaining experience, young drivers can enjoy full driving privileges. They can drive at any time, and they can have anyone in the car.

What is graduated driver licensing?

Graduated driver licensing (GDL) rules enable new drivers to obtain experience on the road and adopt positive driving habits before they are allowed to drive with fewer restrictions.

“The laws vary from state to state. But generally speaking, a GDL program will apply certain rules to a new driver, such as prohibiting the driver from driving alone, driving with other unlicensed passengers, or driving at night,” explains Jobin Joseph, managing attorney for TrafficTickets.com in New York City.

Lyle Solomon, an attorney and financial expert with Oak View Law Group in Rocklin, California, believes GDL laws are the single most effective technique for minimizing teenage driver crashes.

“It involves a three-step licensing system aimed at reducing the factors that put novice drivers in danger,” he says. “GDL systems allow teenage drivers to obtain experience in lower-risk situations. Drivers gain more driving rights as they progress through three stages: the learner stage, the intermediate stage, and the full privilege stage.”

The idea is that as young new drivers gain more experience on the road, they “graduate” to the next level of licensing privileges, which will carry fewer restrictions than the previous level.

Teen driving risks and GDL laws

Adolescent drivers are involved in crashes four times more than drivers over the age of 20, according to the Institute for Highway Safety. The CDC has also reported that motor vehicle crashes account for the deaths of more teenagers than any other cause.

“Hence, state governments have responded by restricting an adolescent’s ability to drive until they have more experience and are hopefully less likely to be involved in an accident,” says Joseph.

Learner stage

The first GDL level is the learner stage, which includes getting a learner’s permit, driving with supervision, and passing a driving test. Learner’s permits in most states mandate that the permit holder is of minimum age, only operate the vehicle in the presence of a fully licensed driver, and earn a particular number of hours while driving under these rules in order to graduate to the next level of licensing.

“A learner’s permit, or provisional driver’s license, is a restricted license that new drivers must get before being granted a full driver’s license. You can drive with this permit until you pass your driver’s test,” Solomon adds.

Lauren McKenzie, an insurance broker for Learnandserve.org, powered by A Plus Insurance, points out that drivers with learner’s permits are only permitted to operate a motor vehicle with a parent, legal guardian, or licensed trained professional while practicing driving.

In particular, your learner’s permit may require a minimum 12-month holding term, prohibit nighttime driving between 10 PM and 5 AM, and may not allow more than one passenger (not including parents or guardians) — or any passengers at all, per Solomon.

“The requirements for obtaining a learner’s permit differ from state to state, but most will require the driver to pass a vision test, prove their residency, and complete a driving exam that can be written, practical, or both,” Joseph continues.

A teenager may also be required to take a driver’s education course.

“In some states, they can take the course as young as 14 years old, but in most states, they usually must wait until they are 15 years old and first have their learner’s permit with a minimum number of hours logged,” cautions McKenzie. “The driver’s ed course requires a written test as well as a driving test that is supervised by an adult driver’s ed instructor. The teenager must pass both tests to be eligible for their full privilege driver’s license after maintaining their learner’s permit for a required amount of time. You must have an overall score of 80% on the written and driving test in order to pass.”

Here are the learner stage restrictions for each state:

State Min. Entry Age Holding Period Min. Amt. of Supervised Driving Other regulation of note
Alabama156 months50 hrs. (none w/ driver ed.)Supervising driver can only be parent, guardian or driving instructor.
Alaska146 month40 hrs., including 10 at night or in inclement weather 
Arizona15.56 month30 hrs. including 10 at night (none w/ driver ed.) 
Arkansas146 monthsNoneFourteen-year-olds can drive with a permit after they pass a written test. Unsupervised driving not allowed if the driver has an instruction permit or a learner’s permit.
California15.56 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night 
Colorado1512 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightFifteen-year-olds enrolled in a driver’s ed class can apply for an instruction permit. Supervising drivers must be a parent, stepparent, grandparent, guardian or driving instructor.
Connecticut166 months (4 months with driver ed)40 hrs. 
District of Colombia166 months40 hrs. in learner’s stage; 10 hrs. at night in intermediate stageLearner’s permit required for all applicants regardless of age. Drivers in the learner’s stage aren’t allowed to drive between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m.
Delaware166 month50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night 
Florida1512 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightDrivers with a learner’s permit can’t drive between sunset and sunrise for the first three months.
Georgia1512 months40 hrs. including 6 at night 
Hawaii15.56 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night 
Idaho14.56 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightThe state has three learner’s permit levels — driver training for drivers 14 ½; supervised instruction with a nonprofessional supervisor; and an instruction permit for people who are 17 who completed driver education and supervised driving or drivers who are 17 and older without driver education or supervised driving.
Illinois159 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightDriver education allowed for 15-year-old permit applicants. Permit applicants without driver education allowed at 17 years, three months.
Indiana156 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightPermit applicants must be at least 15 years old and completed a driver education course. All 16-year-olds can apply for a permit.
Iowa1412 months20 hrs. including 2 hrs. at night 
Kansas1412 months50 hrs. for learner phase,including 10 hrs. at nightDrivers who are 15 can drive without supervision to and from work or school. Fifteen-year-old drivers can get a restricted license if they complete driver education.
Kentucky166 months60 hrs. including 10 at night 
Louisiana156 months50 hrs. including 15 hours at nightDriver education required for a permit for people under 17 years old.
Maine156 months70 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightDriver education required for a permit if the person is under 18 years old. Permit holding period apply for applicants under 21.
Maryland15 yrs., 9 mos.9 months60 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night 
Massachusetts166 months40 hrs. with 30 hrs. advanced driver training 
Michigan14 yrs., 9 mos.6 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightPermit applicants under 18 must complete the first segment of driver education.
Minnesota156 months50 hrs. including 15 hrs. at night, or 40 hrs. with 15 hrs at night if parent completes 90-minute coursePermit applicants under 18 must take driver education. The permit stage is for all drivers over 18 unless they complete driver education.
Mississippi1512 monthsNone 
Missouri156 months40 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night 
Montana14.56 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightEnrollment in driver education is required for permit applicants under 15.
Nebraska156 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night (none with driver’s ed)Drivers who are 14 years old and live at least 1.5 miles from a school and live outside of a metro area can get a learner’s permit or limited license. Limited license allows the teen to drive while supervised.
Nevada15.56 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night 
New Hampshire15.5None40 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightNo learner’s permits. At 15 ½, a person can drive while supervised by a licensed driver who’s at least 25.
New Jersey166 monthsNone 
New Mexico156 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightPermit applicants under 18 must take driver education.
New York166 months50 hrs. including 15 hrs. at night 
North Carolina1512 months60 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightDriver education is required for permit applicants under 18.
North Dakota14Under 16: 12 months; 16: 6 months or until age 18, whichever comes firstunder 16: 50 hours; 16 and over: none 
Ohio15.56 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night 
Oklahoma15.56 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightFifteen-year-olds in Oklahoma can drive if supervised by an instructor.
Oregon156 months50 hrs.; 100 hrs. w/o driver’s ed. 
Pennsylvania166 months65 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night and 5 of which must be in inclement weather 
Rhone Island166 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightDriver education is required for permit applicants under 18.
South Carolina156 months40 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night 
South Dakota146 months; 3 months w/ driver edNone 
Tennessee156 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night 
Texas156 months30 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightTeens between 15 and 17 must pass the classroom portion of a driver education course to get a permit.
Utah156 months40 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightPermit holders under 18 can only driver with supervisor of a driving instructor, parent, guardian or a responsible adult who accepts liability for the driver by signing the permit application. Permit applicants must enroll in driver education. Learner stage driving can include up to five hours in a driving simulator.
Vermont1512 months40 yrs. including 10 hrs. at night 
Virginia15.59 months45 hrs. including 15 hrs. at night 
Washington15 with driver’s ed; 15 1/2 without driver’s ed6 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightPermit applicants must enroll in driver education. People 15 ½ can apply for a permit and not enroll in driver education.
West Virginia156 months50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night (none with driver’s ed.) 
Wisconsin15.56 months30 hrs. including 10 hrs. at nightDriver education enrollment is required for permit applicants under 18.
Wyoming1510 days50 hrs. including 10 hrs. at night 

Sources: Governor’s Highway Safety Association and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and Highway Loss Data Institute

Intermediate stage

After you’ve logged sufficient time practicing on the road comes the intermediate GDL stage. Drivers in the intermediate stage are allowed to test for and get their state driver’s license but must do more work before having the same driving rights as more experienced drivers.

“The specific rules imposed upon an intermediate license holder will vary from state to state,” Joseph continues. “For example, in New Jersey, after completing a motor vehicle test and attaining a probationary driver’s license, the license holder will be permitted to drive unsupervised. But they will still be restricted to driving between 5 AM and 11 PM, and the number of passengers allowed with an intermediate license remains restricted.”

In other states, the rules will vary but the principle is the same: Get new drivers the experience they need to learn safe driving while not putting others at risk by restricting their access to the road, explains Joseph.

Here are the intermediate stage rules that apply to each state:

State Min. Age Unsupervised Driving Prohibited Passenger Rules Other regulations of note
Alabama16Midnight-6 a.m.No more than 1 passenger; secondary enforcementFull license privilege at 17 and after at least six months of driving.
Alaska161 a.m.-5 a.m.No passengers younger than 21 
Arizona16Midnight-5 a.m.No more than 1 passenger younger than 18; secondary enforcement 
Arkansas1611 p.m.-4 a.m.No more than 1 passenger younger than 21Applicants for an intermediate license must be 16 and not have a crash or violation for six months. Drivers less than 18 can’t operate a motor vehicle with unrestrained passengers.
California1611 p.m.- 5 a.m.First six months, no passengers younger than 20 (limited exception for immediate family); secondary enforcementLicense applicants who didn’t take a driver’s ed course must wait until 18 for a license. Those drivers don’t have an intermediate license stage.
Colorado16Midnight-5 a.m.No passengers for first 6 mos.; no more than 1 passenger for 2nd 6 mos.; secondary enforcementA person who is 15 ½ can apply for an instruction permit, which allows driving while supervised by a parent, stepparent, grandparent or guardian. Sixteen-year-olds may apply for a permit, which lets them drive while supervised by a licensed driver who is 21 or older.
Connecticut16 yrs., 4 mos.11 p.m.-5 a.m.First 6 mos. no passengers except parent or driving instructor; 2nd 6 mos. no passengers except immediate family or driving instructorDriver education or home training required for applicants younger than 18. Parents must attend two hours of instruction about teen-driving laws if the applicant isn’t 18 years old yet.
District of Colombia16.5Sept.-June: 11 p.m.-6 a.m. Su-Th, Midnight-6 a.m. F-Sa; July-Aug.: Midnight-6 a.m.First six months, no passengers; after that, no more than two passengers under 18Applicants younger than 21 must go through the intermediate stage until they’ve achieved full status or turn 21.
Delaware16.510 p.m.-6 a.m.No more than 1 passengerEveryone in a driver under 18 must have a seatbelt on. If not, the teen faces a two-month suspension. Driver education required for any applicant under 18.
Florida1611 p.m.-6 a.m.(age 16); 1 a.m.-5 a.m. (age 17)None 
Georgia16Midnight-5 a.m.; secondary enforcementFirst 6 mos. no passengers; 2nd 6 mos. no more than 1 younger than age 21; thereafter no more than 3 passengers; secondary enforcementLicense applicants younger than 17 must complete driver education.
Hawaii1611 p.m.-5 a.m.No more than 1 passenger younger than 18 except household membersLicense applicants younger than 18 must complete driver education.
Idaho15Sunset to sunriseLicensees 16 and younger can have no more than 1 passenger younger than 17License applicants younger than 17 must complete driver education.
Illinois1610 p.m.-6 a.m. Su-Th, 11 p.m.-6 a.m. F-SaFirst yr. no more than 1 passenger younger than 20License applicants older than 17 don’t need to take driver education or the intermediate stage.
Indiana16 yrs., 3 mos.First 180 days, 10 p.m.-5 a.m.; thereafter, 11 p.m.-5 a.m. Sun.–Fri.; 1 a.m.-5 a.m. Sat.–Sun.No passengersThe minimum age for an intermediate license is 16 ½ with drivers education and 16 years, nine months, without that education.
Iowa1612:30 a.m.-5 a.m.First six months, not more than one passenger under 18; parents may waive that requirement.Driver education required for an intermediate license and for unrestricted license if the person is under 18. Full driving privilege occurs at 17 and after at least one year of driving. Ten supervised hours with two hours at night in the intermediate stage.
Kansas169 p.m.-5 a.m. for first six monthsNo more than 1 non-sibling for first six months. 
Kentucky16.5Midnight-6 a.m.No more than 1 passenger younger than 20 except with driving instructorLicense applicants who are 18 must complete a driver education course.
Louisiana1611 p.m.-5 a.m.No more than one passenger younger than 21 between the hours of 6 pm-5 am; no passenger restriction from 5 am-6 pmDriver education required for a intermediate license for people under 17 years old. Drivers who are 17 and older must complete an education program, but doesn’t require behind-the-wheel experience.
Maine16Midnight-5 a.m.First nine months, no passengersDriver education required for license if the person is under 18 years old.
Maryland16.5Midnight-5 a.m.No passengers younger than 18 for first five months; secondary enforcement 
Massachusetts16.512:30 a.m.-5 a.m. (between 12:30 a.m.-1 a.m. and 4 a.m.-5 a.m. the night driving and passenger restrictions are subject to secondary enforcement; enforcement is primary at all other times)First six months, no passengers younger than 18 (between 12:30 am–1 am and 4 am–5 am the night driving and passenger restrictions are secondarily enforced; enforcement is primary at all other times)Driver education required for license applicants under 18 years old.
Michigan1610 p.m.-5 a.m.No more than 1 passenger younger than 21License applicants under 18 must complete the second segment of driver education.
Minnesota16Midnight-5 a.m.No more than 1 passenger younger than 20; 2nd 6 months no more than 3 passengers younger than 20 
Mississippi1610 p.m.-6 a.m. Su-Thu; 11:30 p.m.-6 a.m. Fri-Sat.NoneLicense applicants 17 and older don’t have to go through 12-month learner’s permit holding period. License applicants 17 and older skip the intermediate license phase.
Missouri161 a.m.-5 a.m.No more than 1 passenger younger than 19 for first 6 mos.; no more than 3 passengers younger than 19 thereafter 
Montana1511 p.m.-5 a.m.First 6 mos. no more than 1 passenger younger than 18; second 6 mos. no more than 3 passengers younger than 18License applicants under 16 must complete driver education.
Nebraska16Midnight-6 a.m.; secondary enforcementFirst 6 mos. no more than 1 passenger younger than 19; secondary enforcement 
Nevada1610 p.m.-5 a.m.; secondary enforcementFirst 6 mos. no passengers younger than 18; secondary endorsementDriver education is required for all license applicants under 18 unless there’s no driver education classes offered within a 30-mile radius of the person’s house.
New Hampshire161 a.m.-4 a.m.No more than 1 passenger younger than 25 
New Jersey1711 p.m.-5 a.m.No more than 1 passenger except dependentsNight driving and passenger restrictions waived for new drivers who are at least 21.
New Mexico15.5Midnight-5 a.m.No more than 1 passenger younger than 21License applicants under 18 must complete driver education.
New York16.59 p.m.-5 a.m. unsupervised driving prohibited at all times in NYC; limited daytime unsupervised driving allowed on Long IslandNo more than 1 passenger younger than 21 
North Carolina169 p.m.-5 a.m.No more than 1 passenger younger than 21; if a family member younger than 21 is already a passenger then no other passengers younger than 21 who are not family membersDriver education is required for license applicants under 18.
North Dakota16; 15 for a parent- requested restricted licenseSunset or 9 p.m. (whichever is earlier) to 5 a.m.No passenger restrictions 
Ohio16age 16: midnight-6 a.m.; age 17: 1 a.m. to 5 a.m.; secondary enforcementNo more than one passenger unless supervisedDriver education is required for license applicants under 18.
Oklahoma1610 p.m.-5 a.m.No more than 1 passenger 
Oregon16Midnight-5 a.m.First 6 mos. no passengers younger than 18Driver education is required for license applicants under 18.
Pennsylvania16.511 p.m.-5 a.m.First 6 months, no more than 1 passenger younger than 18; thereafter, no more than 3 passengers 
Rhone Island16.51 a.m.-5 a.m.First 12 mos. no more than 1 passenger younger than 21Driver education is required for license applicants under 18.
South Carolina15.56 p.m.-6 a.m. EST; 8 p.m.-6 a.m. EDTNo more than 2 passengers under 21 except when driving to and from school 
South Dakota14.5 yrs.; 14 yrs., 3 mos. w/ driver ed.10 p.m.-6 a.m.None 
Tennessee1611 p.m.-6 a.m.No more than 1 passenger 
Texas16Midnight-5 a.m.; secondary enforcementNo more than 1 passenger under 21; secondary enforcementThe minimum license is 18 for applicants who don’t complete driver education.
Utah16Midnight-5 a.m.for first six months, no passengers; secondary enforcementAll license applicants must complete driver education. Passenger restrictions end after six months or when the driver turns 18, whichever comes first.
Vermont16NoneFirst 3 mos. No passengers; second 3 mos. no passengers except family; secondary enforcementDriver education is required for license applicants under 18.
Virginia16 yrs., 3 mos.Midnight-4 a.m.; secondary enforcementLearner’s permit: no more than one passenger under 21; provisional license and under 18: no more than one passenger under 21; secondary enforcementDriver education is required for license applicants under 19.
Washington161 a.m.-5 a.m.; secondary enforcementFirst 6 mos. No passengers younger than 20; 2nd 6 mos. No more than 3 passengers younger than 20; secondary enforcementDriver education is required for license applicants under 18. Intermediate license holders aren’t eligible for a full license until 18 with a crash or violation history.
West Virginia1610 p.m.-5 a.m.No passengers younger than 20 for first 6 mos. No more than 1 passenger younger than 20 for second 6 mos. 
Wisconsin16Midnight-5 a.m.No more than 1 passengerDriver education is required for license applicants under 18.
Wyoming1611 p.m.-5 a.m.No more than 1 passenger younger than 18Applicants for full license who are under 17 must complete driver education and have an intermediate license for at least six months.

Sources: Governor’s Highway Safety Association and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and Highway Loss Data Institute

Full privilege

After getting sufficient supervised driving experience behind the wheel, young drivers attain a level of full driving privileges. In most states, at this stage, the driver is allowed to have anyone in the car and drive at any time.

“Once drivers have completed the learner’s permit stage with a minimum number of hours logged and graduated to the intermediate stage with less supervision and a minimum number of months, they can apply for a full privilege driver’s license so long as they meet the minimum age requirement in their state,” McKenzie notes.

Here’s when each state allows full privileges:

State Full privilege minimum age
Alabama17 years
Alaska16 years, six months
Arizona16 years, six month
Arkansas18 years
California17 years
Colorado17 years
Connecticut17 years, four months driving with passengers; 18 years for nighttime driving
Delaware17 years
District of Columbia18 years
Delaware17 years
Florida18 years
Georgia18 years
Hawaii17 years
Idaho15 years, six months, driving with passengers; 16 years, nighttime driving
Illinois17 years, driving with passengers; 18 years, nighttime driving
Indiana17 years with drivers ed, driving with passengers; 17 years, three months, without drivers ed; 18 years, nighttime driving
Iowa17 years
Kansas16 years, six months
Kentucky17 years
Louisiana17 years
Maine16 years, nine months
Maryland16 years, 11 months, driving with passengers; 18 years, nighttime driving
Massachusetts17 years, driving with passengers; 18 years, nighttime driving
Michigan17 years
Minnesota16 years, six months, nighttime driving; 17 years, driving with passengers
Mississippi16 years, six months
Missouri18 years
Montana16 years
Nebraska16 years, six months, driving with passengers; 17 years, nighttime driving
Nevada16 years, six months, driving with passengers; 18 years, nighttime driving
New Hampshire16 years, six months, driving with passengers; 17 years, one month, nighttime driving
New Jersey21 years
New Mexico16 years, six months
New York17 years with drivers ed; 18 years without drivers ed
North Carolina16 years, six months
North Dakota16 years
Ohio17 years, driving with passengers; 18 years, nighttime driving
Oklahoma16 years, six months with drivers ed; 17 years without drivers ed
Oregon17 years
Pennsylvania17 years with drivers ed and 12 months free of crash or conviction; 18 years without drivers ed
Rhode Island17 years, six months
South Carolina16 years, six months
South Dakota16 years
Tennessee17 years
Texas18 years
Utah16 years, six months, driving with passengers; 17 years, nighttime driving
Vermont16 years, six months
Virginia18 years
Washington18 years
West Virginia17 years
Wisconsin16 years, nine months
Wyoming

16 years, six months

Can a 12-year-old drive?

In most states, teen drivers are not legally allowed to drive at age 12. However, a few states, such as California, Florida, Arizona, etc., let teenagers drive at the age of 15.

What states allow 13-year-old drivers?

Currently, no state in the country allows you to drive at younger than 14 years of age. So if you are age 13, you will have to wait at least a year until you can apply for and receive your learner’s permit, depending on your state of residency.

What state can you drive at age 14?

Alaska, Arkansas, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota are among the states that currently allow you to drive with a learner’s permit as young as age 14. Some of these states require you to wait a few months after your 14th birthday.

What state can you drive at age 15?

Currently, Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming permit you to drive as young as age 15. Be aware that some of these states mandate that you be a few months older than 15 years.

What states allow 16-year-old drivers?

In all other states – including Connecticut, Washington DC, Delaware, Kentucky, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island – you must be a minimum of 16 years old to begin driving with a learner’s permit.

The purpose of state laws for teen drivers is to ensure that new and inexperienced drivers are safe on the road. For instance, new drivers in most states are not allowed night driving or unsupervised driving. These rules may seem restrictive, but they can help prevent tragic accidents. Ultimately, following the state laws is the best way to ensure a safe driving experience for everyone.

Frequently asked questions on teen driving

Can a 16-year-old drive out of state?

According to attorney Jobin Joseph, whether or not a teenage driver can drive to another state will depend on their home state’s rules that issued their license in the state they intend to go to. Some states allow drivers with valid learner’s permits from any other state to drive into their state. Other states prohibit drivers with learner’s permits from doing so. Joseph recommends contacting the Department of Motor Vehicles in your state and the state you intend to drive into to determine what rules and restrictions apply.

Can a 17-year-old drive out of state?

This will depend on the rules of the state that issued your permit or license as well as the rules of the state you want to drive to, per attorney Jobin Joseph. He recommends contacting the Department of Motor Vehicles in both states to understand applicable laws.

How many passengers can a 16-year-old driver have?

While every state has its own set of rules regarding who can drive and how many passengers they are permitted, most states allow no more than one passenger if you are 16 or younger, according to attorney Jobin Joseph. It’s always best to check first with your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles regarding passenger rules for young drivers.

How old do you have to be to have a passenger in your car?

When driving with a learner’s permit, you are typically only allowed to operate a motor vehicle with an adult parent, legal guardian, or licensed trained professional present as a passenger. As you graduate to higher levels of driving, more passengers with fewer restrictions are allowed. Even after receiving your full privilege driver’s license, your state may still impose restrictions on who can ride with you and the age of those passengers. To learn more, contact your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.

Can a 17-year-old drive with passengers in Florida?

Seventeen-year-olds with a Class E driver’s license are subject to several passenger restrictions in Florida, according to attorney Lyle Solomon. From 1 AM to 5 AM, 17-year-olds are barred from driving unless accompanied by a 21-year-old licensed driver or traveling to and from the workplace. Since Florida requires full privilege drivers to be at least 18 years old, drivers with their instruction permit are only permitted to have one passenger over the age of 21, per insurance broker Lauren McKenzie. Because 17-year-olds in Florida only have their learner’s permit, they cannot carry younger passengers with them in the vehicle.

Is drivers education for teens required?

Every state has its own rules on whether drivers ed is required for new drivers. Driver education classes are for teens to learn road rules and safe driving practices.

Are there any 17 year old driving restrictions?

Yes. Many states have Graduated Driver License (GDL) laws that restrict where and when a 17-year-old can drive. These laws typically require a new driver’s drive time to be limited to daytime hours, a passenger over a certain age to be present in the vehicle, passengers under a certain age shouldn’t be present in the vehicle, no cell phone use and limited to and from trips to work and school

What are the safest cars for teen drivers?

Safety is a major factor for all drivers, but especially for teen drivers. Look for vehicles earning a top rating from the IIHS and vehicles that come with electronic stability control (ESC). Some of the safest options for teen drivers are the 2016 Toyota Camry LE, 2016 Honda Civic LX, 2016 Subaru Legacy 2.5i, 2017 Hyundai Tucson SE and the 2015 Chevy Traverse LT.

What is the best insurance for teen drivers?

Adding your teen to your policy is almost always more cost-effective than getting the teen their own policy. Speak with your insurance agent to find out what it will cost to add your teen, but also be sure to shop around to find the best insurance option for your teen driver.

Sources:

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.“Teenagers” Accessed June 2022.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Graduated Driver Licensing“Accessed June 2022.

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Erik Martin
Contributing Researcher

 
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Erik J. Martin is a Chicago area-based freelance writer whose articles have been published by AARP The Magazine, The Motley Fool, The Costco Connection, USAA, US Chamber of Commerce, Bankrate, The Chicago Tribune, and other publications. He often writes on topics related to insurance, real estate, personal finance, business, technology, health care, and entertainment. Erik also hosts a podcast and publishes several blogs, including Martinspiration.com and Cineversegroup.com.

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